You’ve announced your pregnancy with your husband and now you need to attend a prenatal visit.
It’s required to confirm the pregnancy and to have the doctor check if everything is okay.
Since this is such a huge moment in your life, you might be wondering should your husband come first prenatal visit?
The doctor usually has a lot of information on the first visit.
Also, bringing your husband or partner along helps them understand the changes that will be there throughout the pregnancy, which prepares them physically and emotionally.
The first baby comes with many emotions, nervousness, and many expectations that can be overwhelming.
Having your partner there relieves you of the stress and expectations, and they can also offer a shoulder to lean on.
Besides, hearing the baby’s heartbeat for the first time with your partner is more exciting, and you also don’t want him to miss out.
When your husband is there, you can make better decisions together.
Let’s take a look at things in a little more detail and answer the question of should your husband come first prenatal visit?
Should Your Husband Come First Prenatal Visit?
For a man, there is a lot they can do to help their partner with the pregnancy, but the pregnant mother does all the work.
Carrying the pregnancy to term until the doctor snips the cord is not easy.
Besides, since the pregnant wife gets all the attention, the husband can feel like they are being ignored.
Taking your husband to the clinic on your first visit is a way to make them feel they are present in that new journey.
Furthermore, you are doing this together, and although he won’t help with the changes happening in your body, the father can help prepare the nursery and other changes in the home.
At this point, you probably have been living together, meaning you have created a routine in your tiny family.
There will be many changes in the current routine because a woman may struggle to help around the home as she usually would.
These are changes that a man needs to expect and understand. Attending a prenatal visit can be important in starting the process.
While the main reason for a partner to attend appointments is emotional support, there are many other reasons too.
1. What Happens At The First Prenatal Visit?
If this is your first child, the first prenatal appointment will be exciting.
You will also be more nervous because there are many things to expect that you have never heard or experienced.
Being there with your partner eases the process and reduces nervousness.
Some of the things you should expect on your first prenatal appointment are:
Due Date – The doctor will ask you about your last menstrual period and do some tests to determine how far along you are.
They will then use that information to predict your expected date of delivery.
If you are at 11 or 12 weeks, the doctor could do an ultrasound to feel the baby’s heartbeat and its size.
However, some people cannot hear their baby’s heartbeat at this point because the pregnancy could be younger than 12 weeks, the mother’s bladder is too full, or they have a tilted uterus.
This is not a significant concern because it happens to many people. Being in the examination room with your husband eases the tension that comes with unexpected results.
Choosing a Birth Plan – Getting a birth plan is an important decision that both parents should make.
Although your partner won’t go through the birthing process, they need to know what you want to offer the support that you need.
Other things to expect during your first visit are a physical exam, where the doctor monitors the pregnancy, and a urine specimen to check for anything abnormal.
2. Should The Husband Be Present During The Other Clinic Visits?
In the past, fathers were not allowed in the clinics and labor wards.
Things have changed, and men are nowadays encouraged to be present during prenatal appointments.
Although attending the first clinic visit seems the most important because of the new information you will learn, it would be helpful to also be there during the other visits.
There will be more changes as time progresses, and getting to know them is also essential.
During every stage of the pregnancy, the physician advises the couple on the things to do to have a healthy pregnancy.
The pregnant mother is also allowed to ask questions regarding any changes she is experiencing in her body.
At the beginning of the second trimester, most women gain weight, something they are uncomfortable with.
As the husband, standing next to the weighing scale and reassuring her that she looks beautiful regardless of the extra weight is essential.
Also, ensure your husband doesn’t miss the 20th-week pregnancy ultrasound because it is at this time you get to see your baby for the first time.
Other parents will also want to know the baby’s gender to prepare the crib early and do clothing shopping for the specific gender.
However, you can also wait for a surprise of your baby’s sex at birth.
Work and life commitments often mean that a husband or partner can’t be present at every clinic visit but it’s a good idea for them to attend as many as they possibly can.
3. Reasons to Bring Your Husband to Your First Prenatal Clinic
Having your partner in the examination room at your first prenatal clinic allows you to have a second set of ears.
The doctor will say a lot of information you cannot grasp all at once.
With the man being present, he can remind you of some of the doctor’s suggestions or ask questions you did not remember to ask.
Other reasons to bring your partner for your first prenatal clinic are;
Receive Any News – Seeing the pregnancy test turn positive can be exciting, but anything can happen to your unborn child.
What if something goes wrong? Receiving bad news on your clinic day can be heartbreaking.
For example, the doctor might not find the heartbeat or notice something unusual with your baby.
These are news you cannot receive alone, so having your husband in the room will help to relieve the stress.
“There Is No Baby” – No expecting couple walks into the examination room prepared to hear that their baby is not there or won’t survive.
Receiving the news by yourself can be harrowing, but when your husband is around, they can offer a shoulder to lean on to help you cope.
Second Set of Ears – If you are a first-time mum, expect to hear many things about the pregnancy.
There will be many terms, instructions, and advice. Getting into the examination room with your partner allows them also to learn the essential things about pregnancy.
They can later remind you of the advice or the instructions the doctor gave, making life easier.
4. How to Prepare For Your First Prenatal Visit
Gathering crucial medical information like your health history and researching will help you get the most out of your doctor on your first prenatal appointment.
Enquire from your family if there is a history of children born with defects, and also find out from your partner’s side of the family.
Other questions to help during the first prenatal visit:
Changes You Should Make To Your Diet – One of the significant changes you will experience during pregnancy is the food you eat.
You need to maintain a balanced diet to keep your baby healthy and avoid gaining too much weight.
The doctor will also advise taking prenatal vitamins that your husband can help you remember to take.
The Foods to Avoid – As you get advice on the food to take, the physician will also tell you to avoid raw or undercooked food for your baby’s health.
For example, if you are a lover of sushi, you will put a pause on that.
Also, it is advisable always to wash your fruits and vegetables to avoid transmitting some infections.
The Amount of Weight You Will Gain – Women gain weight during pregnancy due to the growing baby, but there is a required healthy weight gain.
This depends on your pre-pregnancy BMI, which the doctor can help you know.
The doctor will also teach you how to watch your weight by watching what you eat.
Medicinal chemicals can be transmitted to the baby’s tiny body and cause harm.
You will get a type of medicine for headaches and other pains, which should only be prescribed by the doctor.
Your child’s birth is something big that will bring many changes to your life.
Although the husband cannot help the wife carry the pregnancy or deliver, there are other ways they can help.
Being there with her in her first and subsequent prenatal clinic visits is one of the ways to show support.
So should your husband come first prenatal visit? We’d say yes, they should.
The support is crucial but it also helps to have a second pair of years and someone there to ask questions.
If your partner or husband can’t make an appointment, it’s always a good idea to see if a family member or friend can go with you instead.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does the husband go to the first prenatal visit?
Pregnant mothers are advised to take their partners or husbands to their first prenatal visit.
They will provide a second pair of ears and help to grasp most of the information the doctor says during the first visit.
Your husband will also be your support system if you receive bad news during the check-ups, like failure to hear the baby’s heartbeat.
Also, starting the pregnancy journey with your partner will be more exciting, and them a chance of being present to hear the baby’s first heartbeat.
The doctor will also give many instructions and advice on what to eat and what not to, which your husband can help you remember later.
Do husbands go to every prenatal appointment?
It depends on your husband’s availability. Some prefer to go for the most critical clinics, the first, the 20th-week visit to know the baby’s gender, and the last visit.
However, if you can go to all the prenatal appointments, it is advisable to be present.
In most of the visits, the doctor tests the mother’s blood pressure and other tests like urine which don’t require the husband to be present.
Other husbands will spare their leave days at work to take a paternity leave once the baby is born.
How far along should you be for your first prenatal visit?
Most mothers-to-be will realize that they are pregnant at four to six weeks. Doctors advise that the first prenatal visit should be at the start of the second month, but it is advisable to go once your pregnancy test reads positive.
However, some health practitioners will tell you to wait until 6-8 weeks to go to your prenatal clinics.
If you are unsure about the positive pregnancy test, go to the hospital for confirmation.
The doctor will do a blood test and scans to ensure that the pregnancy is viable.
Iesha is a loving mother of 2 beautiful children. She’s an active parent who enjoys indoor and outdoor adventures with her family. Her mission is to share practical and realistic parenting advice to help the parenting community becoming stronger.
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