What to Bring to Your Prenatal Appointments

Women getting prenatal care
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You might be thinking that your entire responsibility during your prenatal care is to show up and be on time. While this is certainly important, there are some things that you can do to get more out of your prenatal care and to help build a strong relationship with your doctor or midwife. Here are a few suggestions of what to bring to your prenatal appointments:

Medical History

Be sure to bring your complete medical history information to your first prenatal appointment.

Records from your previous pregnancies, surgeries or anything you think your doctor or midwife might want. If this is not your first prenatal visit then be sure to let your practitioner know if anything has changed in your medical history since your last appointment.

List of Medications

No matter what you're taking medications for, be sure to bring an updated list to your prenatal visits. This should also include any medications prescribed by someone other than your doctor or midwife. You will also want to bring in a list of any vitamins or herbal supplements you're taking as well. This may also change as your pregnancy progresses. You may have one set of medications when you begin and as your pregnancy changes things you may change medications, be sure to talk to your practitioner about these changes.

Questions You May Have

It never fails that as soon as you're alone in the exam room, you remember all of the questions you had before your appointment.

Keep a piece of paper handy and write the questions down as you think of them between appointments. This helps you remember the questions and gives you a place to write some answers as well. Bringing someone with you can also be helpful. Having two people hearing the responses can often remember more than one person and remind you of things you wanted to say or learn.


Your Husband, Partner, or a Friend

Bringing another set of eyes and ears, particularly to key appointments like when you first hear the heartbeat or during any prenatal testing, can be a big help. They can remember things you may have forgotten to write down as well as be a witness to your joyful moments. It's also a great way for dads to participate in your pregnancy and get involved from the get go. Even if they can't come to every appointment, remember there are some important appointments that they shouldn't miss. 

An Open Mind

Remember, your doctor or midwife has a lot of knowledge on the subject of pregnancy, labor, birth, and babies. That is why you hired them to be your partner in your prenatal care decisions. If you have questions or want things done a certain way be sure to discuss these with an open mind. Be open and receptive to their ideas and opinions. After all, you'd request the same of them, no? This is the best way to help make decisions about your pregnancy, labor, birth, and postpartum care. 

Use these techniques and tips to help make the most of your prenatal care appointments. You've really only got a handful of appointments to get ready for your baby's upcoming birth, make the most of the time you have and enjoy the process.