Approximately 140 million babies are born each year, and if you’re pregnant, your doctor will likely schedule an ultrasound. Even if you’re not pregnant, you may, at some point, get an ultrasound for a wide variety of reasons, such as checking on your organs in ways that cannot be done via an X-ray.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss questions at ultrasounds to ask your doctor to make this experience better for you. Whether the ultrasound is to get a peek at your new little one or to make sure all is well with your organs, we’ve got you covered.
Read on for more information.
1. What Do I Need to Do Before the Ultrasound?
If you’re going to get an ultrasound both for pregnancy or for any other health-related issue, you may be asked to follow special instructions. This may mean drinking a lot of water beforehand, drinking a special concoction, or making sure your bladder is full. In addition, your ultrasound tech may ask you to shower beforehand or to fast to make sure they can see your organs more clearly without food being in the way.
Make sure you’re clear on the instructions of what will be done that day and what you need to do to prepare. The last thing you want is to get mentally prepared for an ultrasound and then have it canceled at the last minute because you weren’t prepared.
While we think of ultrasounds exclusively for pregnant women, this page has some information on using ultrasounds to access veins. In addition, your doctor may use this technology at some point if you’re pregnant or suffer from other health issues to help find your veins to draw blood.
Now, let’s specifically discuss what to ask at your ultrasound if you’re pregnant.
2. Am I Having a Boy or a Girl?
If you’re interested in knowing the sex of your baby, and you can usually do this via ultrasound. Some parents prefer to be surprised, whilst others like to plan. You can also find out if you’re having a boy or a girl via blood testing much earlier than when it would be noticeable via ultrasound. It is up to you and your partner to decide if and when you would like to know your child’s sex.
3. How Is My Baby’s Heart?
Your baby will be developing its organs during pregnancy, and you’ll likely be able to hear its heartbeat at this stage. Ask your ultrasound tech how the baby’s heart is doing and if you’ll be able to hear it. This can help both you and your partner bond with the child.
4. Where Is My Placenta?
Your ultrasound technician should check the placement of your placenta to ensure you do not have a condition known as placenta previa. With this condition, your placenta is blocking your cervix. Placenta previa affects about 1 in every 200 pregnancies, and mothers-to-be who have this condition will need pelvic rest. So ensure that yours is in the right spot before you leave the ultrasound tech’s room.
5. Are All of the Baby’s Limbs Developing Properly?
Some babies do not grow all of their limbs in some rare cases and may be born without a hand, foot, arm, or leg. While this isn’t very common, your ultrasound tech should be able to see this issue beforehand to alert you if this is the case for your child. If so, you can work with your doctor to help your child adapt once they are born.
6. How Are My Baby’s Internal Organs?
You’ll want to look at your baby’s internal organs to make sure they’re developing properly, not just its heart. Your ultrasound tech should be able to tell if there are issues with any of the child’s vital organs well before their birth. For example, if you have specific hereditary issues within your family, you may ask the ultrasound tech to zoom in on specific areas, such as the kidneys or the bladder. This can help you and your doctor ensure that your baby is developing properly, and if not, what can be done to help accommodate them.
7. Is the Umbilical Cord Okay?
Your umbilical cord is the vital connection between you and your baby. It provides not only nutrients but also the literal bond between mother and child. So you’ll want to make sure that it looks healthy and that it is delivering nutrients properly, and there are no issues with it.
8. Is My Cervix the Correct Size?
As your baby grows, your cervix will shorten a little bit. However, you’ll want to make sure it stays within a certain boundary and doesn’t shorten too much; otherwise, this could be an issue. Your ultrasound tech should be able to tell you what size your cervix is and whether or not this is within the bounds of normal and healthy.
the Right Questions at Ultrasounds
If you’re nervous about not getting all of your questions at ultrasounds answered, you may wish to write them down ahead of time. This may help if you’re especially nervous and want to be sure you have everything answered at the time of your appointment. It is normal to be nervous ahead of your ultrasound, but if you’re armed with information and know what to expect, it should be a little bit less scary.
If you’re getting an ultrasound because you’re pregnant, this should be an exciting time in your life to be savored and enjoyed!
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