Essential Questions To Ask At Your First Prenatal Appointment

First prenatal appointment

Congratulations! You just found out you’re pregnant and eagerly made your first prenatal appointment, but it’s not for 5 more weeks.  Wait, what?  Doesn’t the doctor need to confirm that I’m pregnant and tell me what to do next? 

I had so many questions running through my head during those weeks waiting for my first appointment.  I didn’t know what to expect or what I should be doing.  As you adjust to the excitement, joy, anxiety, and worry of being pregnant, have a notebook handy to write down any question that pops into your mind.  By the time you have your appointment, you’ll be glad you kept track of your questions. To help you get started, I put together a few essential questions to ask at your first appointment.

Important Questions to Ask at Your First Prenatal Appointment

What lifestyle changes do I need to make?

Do I have any bad habits that could harm me or the baby?  Do I need to make any changes to my work situation?  Your doctor will be able to determine what changes, if any, need to be made.

What diet changes do I need to make?

Being pregnant comes with guidelines.  There are certain foods that are harmful to your baby.  Your doctor will be able to give you a list of foods to avoid to help guide your eating habits.  In addition to avoiding certain foods, there are also certain nutrients you’ll need to increase, which leads to the next question.

What prenatal vitamins do you recommend?

While getting nutrients from food is ideal, you’re probably not getting everything you need to support your growing baby.  Ask your doctor if they recommend a certain prenatal vitamin and what nutrients are most important to look for when choosing a vitamin.

What medications can I take?

If you’re taking any prescription medicine, check to make sure these are safe.  Your doctor will also be able to provide you with a list of over-the-counter medicines that are safe to take.

What exercises are safe for me to do?

Can I continue my current exercise routine? Ask your doctor about your current routine and if any modifications are needed.  No matter what your current level of physical activity, your doctor can recommend safe and beneficial activities for you.

How much weight should I gain?

Depending on your BMI, this can be different for everyone.  I wanted to know when I should start gaining weight, how much more I should be eating each day, and about how much per week I should expect to gain.

How often will I have appointments?

Being pregnant means lots of doctor’s appointments.  Each provider is different, so be sure to find out how often you need to schedule visits.

What type of genetic testing is available?

You’ll have the option to get a variety of tests done throughout your pregnancy.  Your doctor can explain what each test determines and when you would have it done.  Most of these are optional. You and your partner can discuss and decide which tests, if any, you want to have done.  

Is there anything in my medical history that is a cause for concern?

Your doctor will likely get an in-depth medical history of you and your family at your first visit.  This can help determine if there’s anything that might lead to an increased risk for complications for you or your baby.

Will you be delivering my baby?

If your doctor isn’t available to deliver your baby, who will be there?  Some practices have multiple doctors who rotate delivery shifts.  If that’s the case, as you get closer to your due date, you might have the option to schedule appointments with those doctors. That way you will have met them at least once and won’t have a stranger delivering your baby.

What prenatal classes do you recommend?

Hospitals usually offer a variety of prenatal classes.  There are also tons of online options.  See what recommendations your doctor has regarding what classes are important to take.

What symptoms should I expect?

It’s good to know what symptoms to expect while pregnant.  Your doctor can give you suggestions and advice on what to do to relieve the uncomfortable symptoms.  It’s also important to know what symptoms are abnormal and what to do if you experience them.  Find out who you can call if you have concerning symptoms and what symptoms warrant an emergency.  Your doctor can tell you what to do and where to go in these situations.

This appointment is an opportunity for you to discuss any concerns you have or anticipate having during your pregnancy.  Don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you need.  Your doctor is there to answer them.  Knowing the answers to your questions will help you feel more prepared to have a healthy pregnancy.

Your life is about to be filled with an abundance of joy.  So, even with all those questions racing through your mind, make sure you enjoy every minute of it!

Related Post: 9 Things To Do The Moment You Find Out You’re Pregnant

Questions to ask at first prenatal appointment