You’ve just learned that you’re pregnant, and you’re feeling a avalanche of emotions. You may be excited because this is something you’ve been hoping for. And you may be worried, afraid of the unknown, or overwhelmed. One of the first decisions you’ll want to make is who will care for you and your baby during your pregnancy. Here are some things to consider when making this important and personal decision. Once you find a healthcare provider you trust, many of your anxieties will be put to rest.
Know Your Style
Do you feel most comfortable with a traditional medical practioner like an obstetrician or would you prefer the more natural approach of a nurse midwife? The decision is yours. Where do you want to have your birthing experience? An obstetrician practices in conjunction with certain hospitals. Many hospitals have very nice birthing suites. Midwives sometimes have privileges at hospitals as well. Be sure to ask your chosen practitioner about this. You may even wish to have a home birth, surrounded by the comfortable and the familiar.
Go With Your Gut
Whatever your preference, it’s likely that you have an emotional attraction to a specific kind of experience. If you’re like me and feel most comfortable in a hospital setting and know that you’ll want pain intervention from an epidural, don’t let a friend or family member sway you with their views. On the other hand, if you’re like my best friend, you may know that you want a natural birth and feel that a midwife or doula would be the kind of nurturing practitioner you need. Definitely, go with your gut. You won’t regret it.
While it’s important to follow your own instincts, you’ll also want to make an informed decision. Ask friends you trust about their experiences. It’s likely that their answers will lead to other questions for your chosen health care provider. Do your research. Look online for articles about various types of healthcare providers. You can read my article at Type A Mom for more detailed information on each type of provider. Use the information you learn to guide your decision-making process.
Keep these three steps in mind when deciding who will care for you and your baby during the next nine months. You’ll feel good about your decision, and knowing that you made the right choice for you will make every other step along the way much easier.