When your baby is born, your midwife will do a limited exam to make sure there is nothing obviously wrong with the baby, and that he or she seems to be adjusting well to life outside the womb. She will also check the baby at each subsequent postpartum visit. However, your midwife is not a doctor and the exams she provides are not as thorough as those that would be done by a physician. The midwives at BetterBirth recommend your baby be seen by a doctor in the first week of life. You have lots of options including pediatricians, family practice doctors, and naturopathic physicians.
If you don’t already have a doctor in mind for your baby, we recommend you take some time before your baby is born to shop for one. Establishing care with a doctor before your baby is born is very helpful. If for some reason you need to be transported during birth, a doctor will be required to examine your baby and discharge your baby from the hospital. Getting an appointment with the doctor to have the baby seen soon after birth is easier if you’ve already established a relationship.
Most doctors will schedule a free consultation/interview with you. This is your opportunity to sit down, one on one, and just talk. Ask him or her questions. See if he or she is supportive of the choices you are making. Get a feel for if you “click” with him or her and his/her practice. Below is a list of some basic questions you might ask.
Remember that you are never “stuck” with a doctor. If you suddenly feel that you and your doctor are not on the same page, then by all means, shop for a new one. Ask friends, other moms, family and neighbors for referrals. If you find a great new doctor, please let us know too!
"We couldn’t have dreamed of our experience being any more perfect!"
- Kendra Ross 2003