Yay! You’re pregnant! So what’s next?

Hopefully you are already taking a prenatal vitamin (or at least a folic acid supplement); if you’re not, go ahead and start one. Next, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor or midwife soon. Click here to read about what happens at your prenatal visits.

If you don’t have a doctor yet, you might wonder what you should look for in an Ob/Gyn. The Internet is full of advice about this question, but here’s ours:

  • A good OB will have a low cesarean delivery rate (don’t be afraid to ask – if she doesn’t know her rate, it’s probably too high)
  • A good OB will never cut episiotomies
  • A good OB will be okay with letting you do almost anything during your pregnancy or delivery
  • A good OB will be supportive of vaginal birth after cesarean
  • A good OB will not push you towards induction of labor

Sometimes the best place to start is by picking the hospital. Don’t be afraid to call the OB units of your local hospitals and ask the same questions. A lot of hospitals have cesarean rates well above 30% – even above 50%. Those are probably places to avoid.

If you have specific concerns, ask specific examples. For example, let’s say you have a previous cesarean and want to have a trial of labor; don’t just ask whether a doctor or hospital allow women to try, ask them instead what percentage of their patients do try and succeed.

Hopefully you already have a doctor or midwife you know and trust, or at least will find one soon. If you are stuck seeing someone who you think isn’t quite what you want, don’t be afraid to switch. Remember, it’s your pregnancy – not theirs.