Yes, they've got questions, too.
There’s an even greater chance you avoided asking said question for those same reasons, and opted for your girlfriend group text or Dr. Google instead. But rest assured, ob-gyns have not only heard it all, they’ve also asked it all during their own appointments. “We, as ob-gyns, are probably ob-gyns' most dreaded patients,” says Jaime Knopman, M.D., director of fertility preservation at CCRM NY and co-founder of Truly-MD. “We don’t always follow the rules or stick to our appointments—I think I saw my OB three times during my entire second pregnancy!”
As a doctor, Knopman admits, it can be hard to be a patient. “But being a patient makes you a way better doctor,” she says. “Experiencing what your patients feel can help you be a more sympathetic and understanding physician.” As a resident—before having children or even thinking about pregnancy—Knopman says she used to tell her patients in labor to push less with their faces and more with their bottoms. “I thought it was so easy,” she says. “When I went to push out my first daughter, I realized how annoyingly condescending I probably sounded!”
Then, during her postpartum period, Knopman realized just how intense postpartum depression could be. “I thought I was super tough,” she says. “I had survived residency working 100-hour weeks, ran multiple marathons, and pushed my body to do a lot. But the postpartum period was the hardest time of my life. I was emotional, overwhelmed, and somewhat lost. It really allowed me to see what women experience.”
So what are OBs asking their OBs? Here are the questions Knopman and Truly-MD co-founder Sheeva Talebian, M.D., director of third party reproduction at CCRM NY say they’ve been asked—and asked themselves.
Answer: It’s perfectly safe, but your skin may be more sensitive than normal.
Find out what happens to your breasts during pregnancy:
Answer: It’s probably fine, but studies and experts aren’t in total agreement. Unless it’s absolutely urgent—and in most cases, it’s not—wait until after you deliver.
Answer: Hell yes.
Answer: Sure—and enjoy!
“I asked this question literally 11 years ago—my daughter just turned 11,” says Talebian. “Her response was, ‘Yes!’ And she followed up by saying it probably felt like knives and fire.” Talebian’s advice: “Use tons of lubrication, especially if you’re nursing. In the postpartum period, particularly in the peak of your nursing and high milk production, your estrogen is super low. That results in what we call vaginal atrophy, or vaginal dryness. The ‘fire and knives’ analogy was spot on—and lubrication helped.”