Choosing the best obstetrician may seem like a daunting task, but it is an important decision. Your obstetrician will be with you throughout gestation, providing you with advice, support, and pregnancy care. It’s essential that you choose the right obstetrician for your needs, so here’s how to find the best OB/GYN for pregnancy in Alexandria, Virginia.
What Exactly Does an OB/GYN Do?
An OB/GYN, an easier way to say “obstetrician and gynecologist,” is a medical doctor who specializes in female reproductive health. They provide care for patients throughout their lives, from adolescence to menopause and beyond.
In addition to providing preventive care, OB/GYNs also diagnose and treat health conditions that affect the reproductive system. Some of the most common conditions that OB/GYNs treat include infertility, uterine fibroids, endometriosis, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
An obstetrician is a gynecologist with advanced training in pregnancy care, including pre-conception, gestation, childbirth, and post-delivery, so OB/GYN care for pregnant women includes prenatal care, delivery, and postpartum care. They are also trained to provide care for women who are experiencing complications with their pregnancy.
All obstetricians are gynecologists, but not all gynecologists are obstetricians. So, if you suspect you’re pregnant or have taken a test to confirm, make sure to book an appointment with an OB/GYN to ensure you receive the proper care and don’t have to switch providers.
Expecting? Here’s How to Find the Best OB/GYN for Pregnancy in Alexandria, Virginia
Look for an obstetrician with a great reputation and the right qualifications.
When searching for the perfect OB/GYN for you and your baby, there are several key factors to take into consideration. First, look into the OB’s experience. You want someone who has experience in delivering babies and caring for pregnant women, and one that has a solid reputation in the local area.
You can use online reviews and social media posts to get an idea of what it’s like to work with specialists. Also, ask your friends and family to get an idea of an obstetrician’s track record. Your health insurance company is another great place to learn more about respected providers.
Be sure to ask about their credentials as well. While most states require OBs to be licensed, it’s possible the obstetrician you’re considering might hold more than one type of license or certification.
Make a list, and then narrow it down.
Once you’ve done your research and narrowed down your list to three to five providers, be sure you note any important differences between them. Some may have lower rates for appointments or delivery, while others may offer additional services like home visits or personalized nutrition plans. It’s important to make sure you understand the differences between your top choices so you can make an informed decision.
Consider your budget.
Take a look at the payment types each OB accepts, and consider whether a payment plan or financing option can work best for you. You should have a clear understanding of the costs involved and what, if any, insurance plans the office takes. Find out whether you have to pay per visit or if there is one total fee for the cost of prenatal care and delivery.
Do your research.
Before you start making appointments and meeting with obstetricians, you’ll need to do your research. Look online to see if any of the OBs you are considering has been featured in any articles, either in print publications or online. Check with your local hospitals and/or birthing centers to see if they can provide any information about the OB/GYNs you’re eyeing.
A consultation is an excellent way to help further narrow down your list, so book a meeting with the few providers left on your narrowed-down list. One may look better on paper but not have a great bedside manner, and the opposite may be true as well.
Make sure to arrive on time and have all your questions prepared beforehand. This is a great time to get to know the obstetrician and learn what kind of care they offer. Consultations often include a physical exam, so it’s important to be prepared for this as well.
Meet the staff.
The staff at an obstetrician’s office is an important part of your care. Take the time to meet with them, ask questions about their approach to patient care, and listen to their answers. It’s important to feel comfortable with the staff at your obstetrician’s office, as these are the people you’ll be relying on for advice and support throughout your pregnancy.
Tour the facilities.
Now, it’s time to take a tour of the facility. This is a great opportunity to get a feel for the atmosphere and determine whether it’s the right place for your prenatal care.
Don’t stop at the OB/GYN’s office. Go to the delivery center as well. While there, you’ll want to find out about the facility’s policies on visitors. Make sure you feel comfortable with the level of care they are able to provide.
Ask about their philosophies.
Understanding the philosophies of the obstetricians you’re considering is another important step in choosing the right one for you. Ask them about their views on childbirth, prenatal care, and postnatal care. It’s also important to ask them about their views on medical interventions and any other specific questions you might have. If you already have a birth plan mapped out, take that with you to your consultations.
Trust your instincts, and make your decision.
After you’ve looked at all the options and done your research, it’s time to make your final decision. Take the time to weigh all your options and take into consideration all the things you’ve learned through your research, consultations, and conversations.
If you’ve done your homework, you should be able to make an informed decision with confidence. After you’ve chosen, congratulations!
Once you’ve chosen your obstetrician, there are a couple of steps to take next. Make sure you’re familiar with their hours of operation, fees, policies and procedures, and that you have a clear understanding of their expectations.
You will also want to take this time to get to know your obstetrician and build a relationship with them over the course of your pregnancy.
The biggest thing you should know after you’ve picked your provider is that you’re allowed to change your mind. If you feel like your OB/GYN isn’t up to the standards like you originally thought, go back to the list where you narrowed down your search to a handful of healthcare professionals and start over.
Be sure to do this as soon as possible, so that a relationship is already established in plenty of time before your due date.
For the Top Obstetricians Near Alexandria, Turn to Women’s HealthCare Specialists!
You and your bundle of joy are in excellent hands with us! To book your appointment for exceptional prenatal care, contact us today at 301-812-3400!
You’ve done the research, weighed the options, and made the best decision for you and your baby. Now that you know how to find the best OB/GYN for pregnancy in Alexandria, Virginia, and have chosen the area’s top obstetrician for you and your baby, it’s time to enjoy the journey of pregnancy. We’re thankful to be on that journey with you!