Health & Wellbeing Pregnancy

Should Your Husband Come To Your First Prenatal Visit?

At the start of your pregnancy it’s natural to feel both extremely excited and at the same time a little anxious.

With your first prenatal visit approaching, you are probably wondering if your husband or partner should come with you.

My answer and from my research is that there are several reasons why it is important for husbands to attend the first prenatal appointment.

These include the opportunity to learn about the pregnancy, ask any questions, offer you emotional support and share the wonderful experience of hearing your baby’s heartbeat for the first time.

Your husband or partner will be a big part of your pregnancy and you will no doubt want them with you each step of the way, so let’s take a look at prenatal visits in more detail.

Is It Normal For Husbands To Attend Prenatal Visits?

A few decades ago you probably would have never seen men attend prenatal appointments.

Fortunately things have changed a lot since then, and nowadays it’s totally normal and acceptable for husbands and partners to attend the first prenatal appointment.

Personally I’m very glad times have changed, and really appreciated having my husband at these visits.

You’ll also find that in most cases health workers actually preferer them to be there, so they can hear about what will happen to their partner, listen to general pregnancy advice and be there to discuss any medical issues which may arise.

What To Expect At The First Prenatal Appointment

There is no doubt that your first prenatal appointment is an exciting and nervous time.

During these appointments there is a lot of information to take in (more on this later), which is why partners are encouraged to attend.

If you are not sure what to expect at the first prenatal appointment, here are a few things to expect:

  • Check Up / Physical Exam: Similar to a general health exam where your weight, height and blood pressure may be measured.
  • Confirm Pregnancy: A positive at home pregnancy test is a presumptive sign of pregnancy, meaning it’s not fully, 100% confirmed. A urine test or blood test will therefore be carried out in order to confirm the pregnancy.
  • Other Tests: Apart from giving a urine specimen and / or a blood test, other tests that may be carried out include: genetic carrier screening, STD tests, pap smear and a blood sugar test.
  • Due Date: This is often calculated by asking when your last menstrual cycle was.
  • Heartbeat: A fetal doppler monitor will likely be used to scan for your baby’s heartbeat, assuming you are at least 12-weeks weeks along. As we covered before, this is why it’s recommended to wear a 2-piece outfit that is comfortable and loose-fitting when dressing for your prenatal appointment.
  • Questions About You: Expect to talk about a range of topics including your medical history, lifestyle, diet, sexual activity and exercise routine. These are important questions so your practitioner can give you the best possible care.

Related: Your Complete Guide To A Happy & Healthy Pregnancy

6 Reasons Your Husband Should Come To First Prenatal Visit

Here are 6 reasons why you might want your husband to come with you to your first first prenatal appointment:

1. Emotional Support

For many moms-to-be pregnancy is both an exciting and anxious time.

You don’t want your nerves to get the better of you and stop you from enjoying the special moment of hearing your baby’s heartbeat (see below) or asking any questions.

So having your man or partner there should help calm any jitters or anxiety and offer a shoulder to lean on should you need it.

2. Experience Hearing The Baby’s Heartbeat

Probably the most memorable part of your prenatal appointment will be hearing your baby’s heartbeat.

This is when you know your pregnancy is really happening and reinforces that you’re growing a tiny human inside you – a truly special moment that your husband or partner is not going to want to miss out on!

3. To Learn

Let’s be honest, most men simply don’t know as much about pregnancy as women.

While this is quite natural given they aren’t the ones carrying the baby, attending your prenatal appointment is certainly a great way for husbands and partners to learn more about what you’re going through, and what you can expect over the coming months.

4. Ask Questions

Man talking to a doctor

Prenatal appointments are the perfect chance for your partner to ask any questions, particularly as there’s a good chance that some of the information and terminology will be new to them.

You and your partner may also want to write down a list of questions beforehand, so your other half can refer to these during the visit and make sure they’ve been answered.

5. Remember Things You Might Forget Afterwards

During your appointment you will probably discuss a lot of things with your healthcare worker.

Two sets of ears are clearly better than one, so from a practical point of view it’s a great idea for your husband or partner to be present, so they can hopefully remember anything that you may not have picked up on or are struggling to recall at a later date.

6. There In Case Something Isn’t Right

If your doctor unfortunately has to tell you something isn’t right then you’ll certainly want you husband there with you.

Perhaps they can’t find the heartbeat, which could happen if you’re earlier than 12 weeks, you have a full bladder or a high body mass index.

Or worse yet, you’re told that there is no baby – the words no expecting parents want to hear.

In these situations the support of your partner will be very comforting, so this alone is a reason why many moms-to-be want their partners with them at their first prenatal appointment.

What To Ask At First Prenatal Appointment

The questions to ask at your prenatal appointment will often come down to your existing knowledge, whether you’ve had a baby before, and your personal medical conditions and circumstances.

If you’re not sure of the questions to ask, here are some standard things that a lot of moms-to-be find helpful to ask during a prenatal visit:

See Also:

Tori is mama to 3 year old Isabella and co-founder of Rockinbaby. She has a BSc in Psychology, is a certified yoga teacher and is a working mom. In her free time Tori loves cooking delicious foods and baked treats, entertaining and working out. Learn more about Tori here.

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