You’re expecting and you just had your first visit with your OBGYN. You may have left feeling upset that your doctor wasn’t exactly what you had hoped for or expected. You’re not alone! Many expecting mothers have felt this way. Many also feel that they have no choice but to stay with their doctor they first see or fear hurting their doctor’s feelings. This is an important time in your pregnancy and REMEMBER your DR is working for you. Changing your doctor is a big decision, but it can make a great difference. I would also encourage you to give your physician some grace and/or a visit or two to get to know them.
Here are some questions to ask yourself when you’re considering whether to make a switch:
1. Do I feel supported in the decisions I have made about my pregnancy? Asking questions will help you to better understand your doctor’s views and practices. For example; does your doctor do episiotomies or what is their view on induction of labor?
2. Does my doctor take time to answer all of my questions? It is recommended to have a list of questions ready before your DR appointment to avoid forgetting or feeling rushed to think of questions.
3. Do I feel comfortable or able to ask questions of my provider? Remember there are NO stupid questions. Asking questions help us feel confident in the decisions we are making.
4. Does my doctor allow me time to ask questions? This may depend on whether the provider is on time or not. Aside from that, you should always be allowed some time to ask questions.
5. Do I trust this person to help you make decisions about my pregnancy and labor/delivery? Trusting your provider is very important, they are going to help you make important decisions about you and your baby’s health.
6. Does my doctor share the same views about pregnancy and labor/delivery as me? There are different types of providers; midwife, obstetrician, and family practice doctor, which is the best fit for you?
7. Does my doctor have good bedside manners? Does their personality go with yours? Remember that you will have frequent visits in the last of months of your pregnancy.
8. What is my providers/clinics policy on changing doctors? Many providers will accept new clients as late as 36 weeks or even later, although it is best to make the switch as soon as possible.
So, if you find yourself questioning whether you should switch DRs, be honest with your DR and if you are still uncertain consider finding a new DR. And most importantly, “Go with your gut!”