going to meet the pediatrician.

  • So today I go to meet with our pediatrician. Well I have no clue what to ask her. I am really at a freak out point, and I dont know what to do. I have been stressing out over tiny little things the past few days and I know its not good to stress while being 32 weeks, but im having a hard trying to calm down. Can anyone give me some advice on how to calm down, and if maybe you could help me figure out what to ask the peditrician?

  • For me the biggest things when choosing any doctor is:

    1: their background... I'd prefer someone that isn't right out of med school, but isn't about to retire. I would like my doctor to have a wide range of various experiences so he or she will be able to refer me to the right specialist if one was ever needed.

    2. how personable they seem when you first meet them (first impressions really are everything)? How much do you feel you can trust them? how much time do they tend to spend with each patient on average? You want a doctor that is professional but  down to earth enough to be able to really speak to you and not just come in do their thing say everything looks ok and then walk out never to be seen again. (Doctors are generally busy, but their patients should be important enough to them to get to know who they are treating at least a little.)

    3. Office reviews... what is the average wait time for each patient (in the waiting area)? Do they tend to run on schedule, ahead, or a bit behind? how friendly is the staff? after all you usually spend more time with the nurses. 

    4. customer reviews... what are the other patients saying about the doctor, staff, and office?


    trust your gut instinct... if you don't like the doctor after having seen him or her once or twice then you can always change doctors.

  • First of all, it is important to identify why you are freaking out lately. Are you feeling overwhelmed? Are you stressing about not being ready for the baby? Some of this is normal and you may be feeling a bit of nesting instinct. During this time you freak out about things being clean and getting prepared for the baby...it is normal and serves a useful purpose! Try to write a list of things you want to get done before the baby arrives---then go by and check things off when you complete them. This helped me because it gave me something to focus on and something I could concretely do.

    As far as the pediatrician goes....it is most important to just meet with her and talk to her. You need to feel comfortable asking her questions, calling her in the middle of the night, and trusting your child with her. Ask her about how you get a hold of her in the middle of the night or on weekends. Is there an on-call doctor or do you speak with her directly? Look around the office and see how long it takes you to get into the waiting room...how long did it take you to make an apt? Etc..those are little things that can be a big deal when you are dealing with a sick child. You could also ask her what hospital she prefers you to be seen at..this can be problematic if you need to drive too far to get treated. Hope this helps.

  • I have been feeling overwhelmed. It seems like nothing is right in the house and I try to clean but it just seems to get dirty again. Yesterday my husband was putting the crib together and he couldnt finish because he didnt have all the screws, I had to go in the bedroom and cry and I couldnt stop unitl my husband came in and calmed me down. I have been having emotional moments like this for almost a week now.

  • I went through this EXACT ordeal a month before my daughter (she's 6months old now) was born! I completely understand the stress, frustration and the feeling of being overwhelm. To calm myself down (I had no choice since my husband was just as clueless as i was, if not more), I took walks to help clear my head with the overflow of new information and the fear of asking the wrong questions, or worse, not asking enough questions to get what I need to make the best decision. Second to that, I asked friends with existing children and obtain recommendations to other pediatricians since I absolutely had no idea where to even begin my search let alone anything else.

    My biggest problem that wreak havoc on me was every single pediatrician that was recommended to me would not accept new patients or did not have openings until my daughter is well into her first year (this is often the case with popular and "great" pediatricians). If I had known I needed a pediatrician and so forth, I would have started my search well in advanced instead of thinking somehow one would be assigned to me when my baby is born. Despite the frantic rush to find a doctor for her, I went through probably 50 doctors within a 10mile radius of my home - hoping I can at least get myself one that was decent and wasn't going to treat me and my daughter as another number in their system.

    How I went about it was the following:

    1. Searched for pediatricians that was in my insurance network. From there, you can use filters like doctors' gender, location, languages etc which will help you narrow down your choices and focus on what your requirements are. For us, my husband was very keen on having a female doctor. Everything else was flexible in terms of requirements.

    2. I Googled every single doctor's name that came up in my search to read reviews, rating, education background, years of experience etc. Because technology is so convenient these days, it allowed me to have a basic foundation so I have something to go on before blindly calling each one up. Based on my research, I narrow the list to the top 10 that I "felt" may be a good fit for my family and baby.

    3. After I narrowed it down, I contacted each doctor - often spoke to their assistants to schedule a time to meet with them. First question I asked was: Are you accepting new patients? If they're not, it's moot to continue speaking with them. If they are, they will ask you some basic information (i.e. baby's due date, your insurance provider etc).

    4. Once I scheduled face time, I wrote down specific questions to make sure I didn't forget about it. Some questions I had were the following:

    • What is the process if I need help afterhours, weekends etc?
    • How is billing done after co-pays etc are collected?
    • What is the length of time my baby can have you as her primary doctor before she's "booted" to an adult doctor?
    • If I have an emergency in the middle of the night, what do I do? Take her to ER? Call you - if so, will you be accessible?
    • Immunizations - how often and how many? Do we, as the parents, have a say in how many we want to have or must we do it all at once?
    • What is your communication style like? Are you more responsive via email? Text? Call? In Person?
    • What are the penalties, if any, if I have to cancel appointments or I'm running late?

    The above are just some of the general questions I had that I thought were important to me based on when I spoke with other parents and what I felt would be important if I were shopping for a new doctor for myself.

    Honestly, there is no right or wrong way to find a pediatrician. Like the rest of the advisers here, it really comes down to who you feel most comfortable with and can trust. if in any way, the doctor gives off a bad vibe to you, makes you feel uncomfortable, talks over you or avoids your questions - no matter how big or small, those are all warning flags that this isn't the right doctor for you or your child. Also, note that just because you have selected that specific doctor at first doesn't mean you are ball and chained to them for life. If at any given point, you're unhappy with your choice, you have the right to change doctors so don't ever feel like you have no option. There's ALWAYS options! It just takes time to test things out and don't pound yourself if it doesn't work out each time. Things like this really does take time and it's a huge learning curve for everyone who's ever being a parent - especially for first timers.

    If you need anything else, please don't hesitate to ask. I'll do my best to help and guide you as I know how and I really hope what I wrote will help you. Together, along with the rest of the community, you'll get to wherever it is that you want/need and with a smile! Cheers!

  • Just BREATHE... It's OKAY if things aren't going as smoothly as you'd like. And I know it's daunting - after all, your hormones are all over the place, you're just NOT yourself no matter who tells you otherwise etc. I know this is easier said than done (I've been there!!) but close your eyes and silently count to 10 slowly when these feelings of extreme overwhelming-ness, stress etc gets too much. Take a deep breath and say to yourself - "It's OK if abc isn't done RIGHT NOW." The world isn't going to fall apart if you take a break (or in my case, MANY breaks) before completing any task relating to the baby. The most important thing is not only your baby, but YOU. Don't lose sight of that because no one can take better care of YOU than YOU. Understand that you're doing your best - that's all anyone can ask and expect of one another. Know that as a woman, you are already one SUPER person already. I mean, c'mon now.. how many fathers or men can do what we can do like child birth AND get up every day to conquer the rest of the world all the while with a child strapped to our hips and all that other house-wifey/career woman stuff? Most would fall over just hearing about it. Everything will come into place on its own. And you know why? Because you, love, are FABULOUS and that AWESOME! The magic will flow once you recognize just your own fabulous-ness. 


    Your husband is awesome too for supporting you in your time of need. So again, I know things seem just too much right now but know that you're giving it your all and it's okay if certain things don't seem perfect. What's perfect if YOU and the life that you're bringing into this world and into your family. Hugs & Smiles!

  • I'm curious if you had your appointment, and if so how it went?  I am a pediatric nurse practitioner so I do primary care for kids.  When parents come in for a "meet and greet" before baby is born i really consider it a social visit.  It's very much just getting a feeling of the office, nurses, docs, ect to se if you feel like the office will work for you.

    Some questions to ask:

    -what are office hours?  what about after hours- do you do call?  

    -do you have a RN that can come to the phone if i have questions?

    -what is your stand on vaccinations? are they required? If so on a set schedule or can i divide up shots?

    -What is your stand on breast feeding? Will you support me in doing this (if it's something youw ant to do) Same with circumcision.

    -What hospital do you use?  Do you see your own patients or do you use a hospitalist team?

    -How freq. do you do well baby/child visits?

    -How long are appt slots?

    -Whats your favorite thing about being a working with kids and families?

    Hope that helps some,


  • Sounds like you are really nesting...don't let it freak you out. Instead, embrace it! Make a list of the things you want to get done and prioritize them. Also remember that you will still be able to get things once the baby comes. As long as you have a place for him to sleep, some food, a few clothes, and a car seat, you are set! Try to do some relaxing activities as well....meditate, take a prenatal yoga class, try a relaxing bubble bath, or go get a prenatal massage. Good luck and hang in there. 

  • All of the advice, questions and suggestions in this post is why I love Strongmoms. Great advice and support everybody. The most important thing to me was hearing other parents I trusted tell me that they felt the pediatricians did a good job. I don't always need good bedside manner because I want my child's doctor to give me the answers without sugar coating. As far as being stressed, is there anything more stressful than having a baby? Take things minute by minute and before you know it there will be much more to stress over when the baby comes. Good luck!

  • Well the visit went very well. I was very impressed by the doctor, she had several things she asked me and she even answered questions i had not even thought of. I also was able to meet with her nurse and she told me how to contact her, and she had a breastfeeding specialist who I can talk to any time Im having issues or questions about breastfeeding. I feel much better now about the pediatrician and I know if I have any questions I will be able to get a hold of her any time. Im still stressed about things at home and if we are going to be completely sane ever again but I feel better now that I have a place to go if I ever need advice. BTW we start our childbirth education classes tonight  and I have a feeling that this will also help. Thanks everyone for being here.

  • Good! Glad to hear that you've made some headway with choosing a doctor. Really don't worry too much about the home stuff. Stressing out about it isn't going to do you, your baby. or your husband any good. As long as you have a place for the baby to sleep, be changed, clothes, get a bath, and eat then you're golden. It's going to be a few months after the baby is born before he/she even becomes mobile enough to worry about baby proofing anything within reach. do take some time to prepare some meals and freeze them for your recovery time though; you will thank yourself every evening.

  • So glad your visit went well -  sounds like you found a great pediatrician! Love that she has a breastfeeding specialist to help out - such a great service. I hope your childbirth classes go well too. It always helps to have good knowledge and be prepared for whatever may come! I drove my husband nuts with my need to keep the house immaculately clean before we had our second little boy. It's just an instinct to want everything prepared. Try as hard as you can to just tackle one thing at a time and not worry about the entire house being perfect. Hang in there!