The first prenatal visit can be exciting and overwhelming for many pregnant women. After all, this is the first time you will meet with your doctor to discuss your pregnancy and ask any questions you may have. While it is essential to come prepared with a list of questions, it is also important to remember that every pregnancy is different.
As such, your doctor may have additional questions for you based on your personal medical history. In general, however, there are a few essential questions that every pregnant woman should ask her doctor during the first prenatal visit. These include questions about pregnancy diet, exercise, and potential risks during pregnancy. You can help ensure a healthy and successful pregnancy by asking these critical questions.
Must Ask Questions for your First Prenatal Appointment
For most pregnant moms, the initial prenatal appointment is the first time you will be meeting your baby’s doctor and starting to receive professional care during your first pregnancy. It is important to remember that this visit is also an opportunity for you to ask any questions that you may have about your pregnancy. The following are essential questions to ask your doctor during your first prenatal visit.
Get a printout of your first-time pregnancy questions to take them to your appointment.
1. What OTC medications are safe for me to use for headaches, allergies, colds, etc.?
During pregnancy, avoiding medications that could harm the baby is vital. This includes both over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Some common OTC medications harmful to pregnant women include ibuprofen, aspirin, and cough medicines with decongestants.
It is essential to talk to your doctor if you are pregnant and need medication for a headache, cold, or other ailments. Your doctor can recommend safe, over-the-counter medicines for you to take during pregnancy.
2. Should I expect to cramp?
Pregnant women need to know if they should expect to cramp because cramping is a common sign of early pregnancy. Cramping can signal something more serious, such as ectopic pregnancy, so it’s important to know what to look for. If you are experiencing cramping during pregnancy, please consult your doctor.
3. Should I expect bleeding?
It is essential to know if you should expect bleeding during pregnancy because bleeding can be a sign of something more serious, such as a miscarriage. If you are experiencing any bleeding during pregnancy, please consult with your doctor.
4. How much weight is normal to gain?
When pregnant, it is important to know how much weight is normal to gain because gaining too much or too little weight can harm you and your baby. Gaining the right amount of weight during pregnancy is essential for helping to ensure healthy delivery and a healthy baby. Your doctor can help you determine how much weight is best for you to gain during your pregnancy.
5. What exercise is safe during pregnancy?
When pregnant, knowing what exercises are safe is essential because doing the wrong exercises can harm you and your baby. It’s important to consult with your doctor to find out which activities are safe for you to do during your pregnancy. Doing the right exercises can help you stay healthy and fit during pregnancy.
6. Is it safe to get a flu shot during pregnancy?
It is good to know if it is safe to get a flu shot during pregnancy because the flu can cause severe problems for pregnant women and their babies. Some issues that can occur are premature labor, low birth weight, and even death. Pregnant women should get the flu shot every year to help protect themselves and their babies from getting the flu. Talk with your doctor about the best option for you.
7. How long can I work, and when should I tell my employer?
You should know how long you can work and when to tell your employer because, during pregnancy, you are at an increased risk for specific health problems. Working too long or being on your feet all day can cause backache, swelling of the feet and ankles, and even preterm labor.
You may also need time off for doctor’s appointments or to rest if you feel poorly. Knowing how long you can safely work and when to let your boss know about your pregnancy can help keep you healthy and avoid any potential issues.
8. Should I write a birth plan?
Knowing what you want your birth to look like and communicating your wishes to your doctor and other caregivers is essential. A birth plan can help ensure you have the best possible birthing experience. Talking over your options with your doctor can help you decide the best birth plan for you.
9. What should I expect during labor and delivery?
Pregnant women need to know what to expect during labor and delivery because it can help them feel more prepared and relaxed when the time comes. Also, knowing what to expect can help ensure that you and your medical team are on the same page throughout the process.
10. Who will deliver my baby?
Knowing who will deliver your baby when you are pregnant is essential because you want to ensure that you are comfortable with the person in the delivery room with you when your baby is born.
You also want to make sure that the person who delivers your baby has experience delivering babies. Depending on the hospital and your health insurance, the doctor you meet with during your prenatal visits may not be the doctor that ends up delivering your baby.
11. What are the reasons I would need a cesarean section?
There are many reasons why you may need a cesarean section during labor and delivery. Some of the most common causes include the baby being in a breech position (facing down), the placenta in front of the baby, covering the cervix, or excessive bleeding. Pregnant women need to know about cesarean sections and what could cause them, so they can be prepared if it becomes necessary.
12. Are my prescription meds okay to take during pregnancy?
Knowing if prescription medications are safe during pregnancy is essential because some medicines can cause congenital disabilities. If you are on any medications, discuss them with your doctor.
13. Should I change my skincare products?
The skin is the body’s largest organ, and what you put on it can be absorbed into your bloodstream. So when you’re pregnant, it’s imperative to use skincare products that are free of chemicals and other harmful ingredients. Your doctor may know of some great skincare products safe for pregnancy.
In the meantime, look for skincare brands that list all of their ingredients on the packaging, and avoid those with artificial colors, fragrances, and other harsh additives. Your best bet is to go with natural or organic brands that use plant-based ingredients.
14. What foods can’t I eat?
Knowing which foods you should avoid is essential because they could make you sick when pregnant. Some food-borne illnesses can cause severe problems for both you and your baby.
15. What are some typical symptoms I should expect?
It is essential to know the answer to this question when pregnant because you may experience some of these symptoms, and you will want to be sure that it is just normal morning sickness or pregnancy symptoms and not something more serious.
16. Can I travel during pregnancy?
When pregnant, knowing if you can travel and the risks are essential. Flying during pregnancy can be safe, but some risks are associated with it. You should always consult with your doctor before deciding about traveling while pregnant.
17. What prenatal testing or screening should I do?
There are many prenatal tests and screenings available to pregnant women. Knowing which tests to take and when is essential to get the most accurate results and make informed decisions about the health of you and your unborn baby. Different tests are recommended at various stages of pregnancy, so it is essential to be aware of what is available and when you should schedule them.
18. Do I need to take a prenatal class?
It is helpful to take a prenatal class because it will give you the information you need to have a healthy pregnancy. The class will cover nutrition, exercise, and birthing options. You will also learn about common problems that can occur during pregnancy and how to deal with them. Your doctor will have information about what prenatal classes are available to you.
19. Is sex okay during pregnancy?
Sex is considered safe during all stages of a normal pregnancy, but it’s essential to know that every pregnancy is different. Some couples stop having sex altogether during pregnancy, while others continue to have sex regularly. Talk with your partner and health care provider about what’s comfortable for you.
20. Is it safe to go to a spa/get my hair done?
It’s important to know if it is safe to go to a spa or get your hair done when you are pregnant because many spas and hair salons use chemicals and other treatments that could be harmful to your unborn child. It’s always best to check with your doctor before undergoing any treatment while pregnant.
21. Do I need to sleep in a particular position?
During pregnancy, getting a good night’s sleep is vital. Correctly positioning yourself while you sleep can help achieve this. For example, sleeping on your left side can improve blood flow and keep your baby healthy. Talk to your doctor about the best sleeping options for you.
22. Does my family history put me at risk for any conditions?
A few medical conditions can be passed down from parents to children. Pregnant women need to know their family history to be on the lookout for any potential problems. If a woman knows she has a family history of heart disease, she can take steps to lower her risk of developing the condition during her pregnancy.
By being aware of potential risks, pregnant women can work with their doctors to make the best choices for themselves and their unborn babies.
23. How often will I have an ultrasound?
Ultrasounds are essential to prenatal care because they can help your doctor see how your baby is developing. They can also help diagnose problems early on in the pregnancy. Your doctor will likely schedule one ultrasound midway through your pregnancy and another near the end. Some health insurance plans allow you to have more, but too many are unsuitable for the baby.
24. When will I feel the baby move?
Awareness of baby movement during pregnancy is essential because it can signify a problem. If you’re not feeling the baby move as much as you should, it could mean that the baby isn’t getting enough oxygen or that there is something wrong with the placenta. It’s also an excellent way to monitor the baby’s growth and development. Knowing a ballpark time of when you should start feeling your baby can help give you peace of mind.
25. Any warning signs I need to look out for?
Pregnant women need to know the answer to this question because many things can go wrong during pregnancy if it is not detected early. For example, preeclampsia is a condition that can cause high blood pressure and organ damage in pregnant women. It is essential to be aware of any warning signs to get treatment as soon as possible.
26. Am I able to have a doula?
Know your options! A doula is a non-medical support person who provides physical, emotional, and informational support to the woman before, during, and after childbirth. A doula may also provide postpartum support to the family.
Some women choose to have a doula in addition to their midwife or doctor, while others prefer a doula instead of those professionals. Knowing if you can have a doula is important because they can provide emotional and physical support during labor.
27. Can I email or call with any questions or concerns?
You should know the best way to contact your healthcare provider should you have any additional questions or concerns. For example, you may want to ask about:
- Any new symptoms you’re experiencing
- Changes or concerns with your current treatment plan
- Results of any tests or procedures
28. Who do I contact if I can’t reach you?
Knowing the answer to this question when pregnant is essential because if you can’t reach your doctor, you’ll need to know who to contact for help. Some concerns may be unable to wait until your doctor can follow up with you.
Free Printable of Questions to Ask your Doctor During the First Prenatal Appointment
The first prenatal visit is an essential step in ensuring a healthy pregnancy. During this visit, you will have the opportunity to ask your doctor any questions you may have about your pregnancy. It is also a time to start building trust and communication, which will be essential throughout your pregnancy. You can make the most of this vital appointment by being prepared and knowing what to expect.
Some essential questions include: how often should I come in for appointments, the risks of my pregnancy, and what can I do to reduce the risk of complications? By asking these questions, you can ensure that you and your doctor are on the same page and have all the information you need to make informed decisions about your pregnancy.