By Katie Saltz


Maternity-1The first visit to an OB-GYN can make a newly-pregnant mom anxious. Be prepared with questions to make sure you find a doctor who is not only qualified, but connects with you personally. Consider these to get started:

• Is there a nurse line to call for general questions or will you be available for calls?

• What do you consider an emergency? When should I call and when should I head straight for a hospital?

• What is your policy on labor induction?

• What are your thoughts on common labor interventions? (IVs, continuous monitoring, etc).

• Let the doctor know your current exercise and dietary habits and ask what you might need to change during pregnancy.

   Your care provider is a key player in your pregnancy and birth experience. Find a practice you connect with and can rely on to respect your wishes on the day of your baby’s arrival.



Maternity-2Babies wiggle and spin into all sorts of positions in the womb. But some are less optimal for childbirth than others. Here are the terms that reference your baby’s position in the womb and during labor:

 Breech Presentation: When the baby is head up, so he would be born feet or buttocks first.

Anterior vs. Posterior: Anterior means the baby is facedown, which is considered normal presentation for delivery. Posterior means the baby is face-up during delivery.

Transverse: The baby’s body is lying horizontally in the uterus. If the baby cannot be moved, this usually requires a C-Section.

Lightening: When the baby drops low in the uterus in preparation for delivery.

Engaged: The baby settles into the pelvic cavity, often during the last month of pregnancy.

Crowning: When the baby’s head passes through the birth canal and the top of his head is visible.



Maternity-3You will probably hear the term “APGAR” in the delivery room when your baby is born. So what is it?

The APGAR is a quick, overall assessment of your newborn immediately following delivery.

The scores are recorded at one minute and again at five minutes after birth.

APGAR measures the baby’s color, heart rate, reflexes, muscle tone and respiratory effort. The scores range from zero to two for each category for a maximum score of ten.

At the one minute, APGAR scores between seven and 10 indicate that the baby will need only routine care.

Scores between four and six indicate that some assistance for breathing might be required. Scores under four can call for lifesaving measures.

At five minutes, APGAR scores of seven to 10 are still normal. If the score falls below seven, the baby will continue to be monitored and retested.

APGAR Score Card

Heart rate:
0 – No heart rate
1 – Fewer than 100 beats per minute
2 – More than 100 beats per minute

0 – Not breathing
1 – Weak cry–may sound like whimpering
2 – Good, strong cry

Muscle tone:
0 – Limp
1 – Some flexing of arms and legs
2 – Active motion

Reflex response:
0 – No response to airways being stimulated
1 – Grimace during stimulation
2 – Grimace and cough or sneeze during stimulation

0 – The baby’s entire body is blue or pale
1 – Good color in body but with blue hands or feet
2 – Completely pink or good color