Are you a first time mom? Are you having another baby after a not so great birth experience? If you’re looking for some tips on how to have an amazing birth, then look no further! Here are some of my top tips for anyone planning on having a baby.
- Quit listening to the haters. Haters gonna hate, or more specifically, women who have had traumatic birth experiences love to share them with every pregnant lady they see. Do your best to avoid these horror stories or tune them out if you have no other option. Likely, they are still processing what has happened to them, which is not a bad thing, it’s just not something that may be appropriate to discuss with hormone laden pregnant women whose anxiety and emotions may be running high. Instead, surround yourself with positive birth stories and like minded momma’s. I highly recommend Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth, the first half is full of positive birth stories in all different situations.
- Hire a Doula! Having continuous support from pregnancy to birth and even intopostpartum can be incredibly comforting. Regardless of whether you have a Midwife or an OB transfer of care happens, other births may happen and the care provider you had hoped would be there may not be able to. Hiring a Doula is a near guarantee that you will have someone with you that knows you and what your choices are and can be at your house as soon as you need them. Hiring a Doula early in your pregnancy gives you time to bond with her and give her all of the information she needs as well as allowing you to have an expert at your fingertips if you have a burning question that Google can’t satisfy. That Doula will be your pregnancy bestie and may even offer Postpartum work so you can hire someone you trust to watch your new babe while you catch some sleep or a shower. Doula’s are walking birth encyclopedia’s (remember those?), take advantage of their knowledge and abilities for what is one of the most important experiences of your life.
- Hire a Midwife. Having a good care provider is so important during this sensitive time. But why settle for good? Why not have great and go with a midwife? Midwives MUST attend 60 live births to complete their training and they are used to all forms of vaginal birth whether medicated or not. If delivering vaginally is important for you, then a midwife is a must. If delivering unmedicated is something you seriously want, then a midwife is likely the best route. If a home delivery is your thing, then a midwife is mandatory. Another amazing bonus with midwives is that they come to you and your baby for appointments instead of you having to figure out logistics for you and your new little bundle of joy. They’ll come to you and examine you in your bed if that is what you prefer. This service is spectacular and can’t be beat!
- Try a Water Birth. More and more hospitals are installing bathtubs or birth pools in their facilities and there is good reason for this. If you are having an unmedicated birth then being in water can drastically improve labour pains by alleviating the pressure of contractions and using heat to ensure your comfort and relaxation as you labour. Renting a birth pool for a home birth is an excellent idea unless you have a very large tub at home. Rentals come with disposable liners to ensure hygiene and are an excellent way to have the benefits of a water birth without breaking the bank. Just please please please make sure that the hose connector fits your sink tap so that you or your partner don’t have to get a connector mid-labour!! (I speak from experience, read about it here).
- Hypnotize yourself! No, Really!!! This was in my top three in my “Money Well Spent For My Birth” list (the other two were Hiring a Doula & Renting a Birth Pool). My husband and I took an incredible weekend course in Toronto that was mind blowing! The recordings we received helped me to have a completely calm and quick active labour and I wish I had had the wherewithal to have played it while I was pushing as it likely would have helped me to enjoy it a bit more than I did. Being able to labour calmly and quietly is one of the greatest things I have ever experienced and will always always always recommend it to my clients and anyone I know or casually overhear looking to have a natural (vaginal, unmedicated) birth.
I hope these help you to have a super amazing rockstar birth experience! Is there anything you would add to this list?
If you are looking for a walking birth encyclopedia, aka a Doula, and are located in the East GTA, please feel free to contact me for a FREE consultation to see if we’re a good fit!