Birth Doula Blog
Choosing the Right Provider
When choosing a provider, remember that YOU are the customer and you have choices. If you're not vibing with your provider, move on and find someone who will support you.
Be honest with your doctor and tell them there are a few important questions you'd like to ask. If they don't even take the time to hear you out then that's your sign to find someone else. It's best to know early on if they're a good match for your labor experience. Keep in mind that there is no labor police and you have total autonomy over your body and baby's. Provider preference/recommendation is not law and you have the right to choose what feels right to you, even if it's outside of the norm.
If you truly have no say about which provider you get and you're not quite comfortable with them, consider switching to a midwife, a home birth, laboring as long as possible at home, or having a rockstar support partner with you at the hospital.
QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A PROVIDER:
-Do you support unmedicated births and what are your views on them?
-How do you support medicated births and what are your views on them?
-Do you support breech births, how?
-Who are your backups and will I meet them?
-How do you feel about doulas?
-How do you feel about birth plans?
-What are your induction and C-section rates?
-Do you support a VBAC and how do you ensure it'll be as successful as possible?
-How do you view pain during labor?
-What is your plan if I go past my due date?
-How many hours will you allow me to labor after my water breaks?
-How long will you allow the umbilical cord to remain attached?
-Will you administer Pitocin to deliver the placenta?
Remember that if you choose an OB you will likely only labor with them for a short while, as they tend to cover multiple births at a time. Still, knowing ahead of time how they can support you during the expected and unexpected can help you decide on who better aligns with your wishes.
For an even better experience, choose your hospital wisely and get support from a doula or make sure you and your birth partner are well-educated and able to make decisions during complex situations.
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