Celebrate Dads At Your Ultrasound Appointmentsby Elizabeth MacDonald
It’s almost Father’s Day and time to reevaluate your focus during appointments. Of course you should be zoned in on the mother during the ultrasound, but if the father is present, consider pulling him into the spotlight for a bit.
An ultrasound is generally the first time a father feels bonded to his growing baby. Up to this point, he’s only seen two pink lines on a pregnancy test, which doesn’t automatically shift his frame of mind. But the sound of that fluttering heart helps it all sink in.
A small 2014 study revealed how much of an impact seeing their unborn babies on ultrasound has on dads. Researchers interviewed 22 expectant fathers, aged 23 to 41, in Michigan after they viewed a routine ultrasound of their unborn child taken at weeks 16 to 20 of pregnancy. Half of the men were first-time fathers. “The ultrasound helped the men truly understand that they were going to have a child and reassured them that all was well with the pregnancy,” the researchers said. “It also prompted the men to think deeply about their roles as fathers.”
At your ultrasound boutique, these dads get the first glimpse into their future. They will leave daydreaming about walking their baby girl down the aisle someday or coaching their son’s football team.
While much previous research shows that mothers and babies benefit when fathers are positively involved and supportive during pregnancy, they should feel welcome at the first event that connects them to their baby. It is up to you, as the ultrasound tech, to do so. Consider ways to make the appointment fun and comfortable for the dad in the room.
3 Ways to Focus on Dad at an Ultrasound
Talk to Dad
Welcome not just Mom, but Dad into the room by greeting him and asking his name. While chatting with the couple, make sure to give Dad space to voice his questions and thoughts. You can also take a minute to learn about his work or hobbies, too. This information can be used during the appointment to ask if he’s excited to take his soon-to-be little one camping or traveling, etc. You will plant the seed of daydreams.
Wait to Show the Screen
Perhaps you can turn the screen and wait to ‘reveal’ the baby when you have found a great profile image or image where Dad can know what he is seeing. Let the moment truly sink in before moving on. This is a great bonding moment between Mom, Dad, and Baby, but you can see just how much of an impact it has on Dad.
Ensure that Mom and Baby are Healthy
Most dads are worried about their partner and the health of the pregnancy. If everything is ok, make sure to reassure Dad so he can relax. Ask him if he wants to see the baby’s toes or fingers, and keep him involved throughout the entire appointment.
Know that your role is an important one in making fathers feel special and involved with their partners' pregnancies. Celebrate Father's Day by celebrating the dads in your appointments!