Who is going to deliver my baby?

P&M has a Doctor and a Midwife assigned to the hospital 24/7/365 days a year. Every laboring patient is jointly managed by the Doctor/Midwife team. Typically, if you have a vaginal delivery the midwife will be with you for the delivery. If you have a cesarean section, a doctor from our practice will perform the delivery.


Can I deliver at a different hospital?

To best serve you, we have the hospital covered by a doctor and a midwife 24/7 at Inova Alexandria only


Can I dye my hair while pregnant?

Yes, it is safe


Can I have sex while pregnant?

Unless instructed by your provider not to, sex is safe in pregnancy. At term, sex can even help “kick off” labor. In the first trimester, don’t be surprised if you have sex and see some spotting (see page 23 for spotting in pregnancy), although it can be scary it isn’t causing any harm.


Can I travel while pregnant?

Unless instructed by your provider not to, then you can travel. You can fly in a plane until 36 weeks. When traveling, if possible, have your records with you (the front desk can provide these for you). Some airlines require a letter stating it is safe to fly, please let us know at your appointment if you need one. Whether you are driving or flying, stay hydrated, stretch your legs frequently, and walk around. Long plane rides increase your risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis) or PE (pulmonary embolus) so we recommend wearing compression stockings and walking in the aisle at least every 1-2 hours.


What can I do for stretch marks?

Unfortunately, stretch marks have a strong genetic component. To try to decrease stretch marks, stay hydrated your whole pregnancy. Some people feel like cocoa butter or bio oil works well to moisturize the skin and thus prevent stretch marks. (see skin changes under common discomforts under the PREGNANCY tab)


When should I register for the hospital?

The hospital recommends 60 days before your due date. You can register online at http://www.Inova.org/Childbirth


What is round ligament pain?


Round ligament pain is a sharp pain or jabbing feeling often felt in the lower belly or groin area on one or both sides. It is one of the most common complaints during pregnancy and is considered a normal part of pregnancy. It is most often felt during the second trimester.

Round ligament pain can be concerning and uncomfortable. But it is considered normal as your body changes during pregnancy. The symptoms of round ligament pain include a sharp, sudden spasm in the belly that can be felt into the groin. It usually affects the right side, but it may happen on both sides. The pain only lasts a few seconds. Exercise may cause the pain, as will rapid movements such as: sneezing, coughing, laughing, rolling over in bed, standing up too quickly


When and where can I have my short term disability and FMLA paperwork completed?

Please give your paperwork to the front desk 10-14 days before you need it to be completed. It cannot be done the same day. Please do not give the paperwork to the midwife or doctor at the hospital; it is the administrative staff that completes it.


Where can I get assistance putting the car seat in?

The nurses at the hospital CANNOT help you with installing the car seat or confirming it has been installed correctly.

Please go to http://www.safercar.gov/cpsApp/cps/index.htm  to find a local Child Car Seat Inspection Station near you.


What are your recommended breastfeeding resources?

(See BREAST FEEDING tab on the home screen)

We recommend our new parents class, lactation consultants, the La Leche League, and new parents and/or breastfeeding support groups. In addition, there are lactation consultants on staff at Alexandria hospital who will see you postpartum. There is also a daily breastfeeding class on the Mother/Baby unit that we encourage you to attend


Where can I get a belly band?

Belly bands are great at helping to support your growing belly which can also help your hips and back. The amount of support differs by belt so choose the one that feels best to you. You may need different bands throughout the pregnancy. Belly bands can be purchased online or in stores such as Target or Babies “R” Us. They are a HSA approved expense in some plans.


Where can I get compression stockings/support hose?

Compression stockings are helpful in reducing swelling, increasing circulation and supporting tired legs. They come in different sizes and styles. They can be found in drug stores, medical supply stores, or online.


Do you have any pediatricians you recommend?

Please let us know when you’re contacting pediatricians. We have a list of local pediatricians we can provide to you. It can also be helpful to talk to friends and read reviews to see who you may be comfortable with. Most people pick a pediatric group that participates with their insurance and has a location close to their home.


What is a doula and why would I want one?

A doula provides continuous physical and emotional support to the mother before, during and just after birth. It is not necessary to have a doula, but some patients find the continuous support helpful. At our practice, the midwives try to coach you through labor but they cannot always provide the continuous support you make be seeking. Doulas are there to help you with each contraction, help you cope with labor, and support you and your partner; however, they are not there to give medical advice. If you are considering a doula, please let us know, we have a list of doulas that we have worked with which we can provide to you.


What is a Certified Nurse Midwife?

A Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) is an advanced practice nurse who has a Master’s degree in Nursing and has attained extensive training in midwifery and women’s health. They can perform prenatal visits, perform deliveries, and provide gynecological care. Midwives consider themselves experts at normal pregnancies and vaginal deliveries. They also collaborate with physicians on management of high risk patients.


What is a Nurse Practitioner?

A Nurse Practitioner (NP) is an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) who has completed advanced coursework and clinical education. They are qualified and licensed to perform prenatal visits and provide gynecological care.


I want an epidural, can I have one with a certified nurse midwife?

Absolutely! If you are trying to go natural we have the skills and knowledge to support you. However, if you desire an epidural you can have one. Ultimately, we want you to have a safe and satisfying birth experience of YOUR choosing.