Thinking of a water birth... First baby....

(13 Posts)

Just that really...

I am really thinking of a water birth, I am 34+2 with my first baby so have no idea what labour is like.

Would really like to hear other people's experiences of water birth and if you have 2 DC's with different births to compare?

Thank you smile

photographerlady Fri 19-Apr-13 11:53:06

I am a first timer too and plan on a waterbirth, here are some stories.

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/childbirth/1667197-Can-anyone-share-their-waterbirth-stories

I only have the one DD and we went for a water birth as, due to some minor complications, I didn't feel comfortable with a home birth. Once I was in the water it was great, though DD decided not to come down the birth canal so I ended up with forceps. I am still glad I opted for water birth as it made that part of the labour memorable and special for all the right reasons.

You can always change your mind, and also be prepared for the fact that there might not be a water birthing suite available when you are in labour.

Thanks smile I think water births are becoming more popular now and we only have 1 birthing pool in the labour ward where we are! So fingers crossed no-one else wants it when I do smile

LuckyOwl28 Wed 24-Apr-13 15:05:17

Hi! I gave birth to my first 9 days ago, and wanted a water birth from the start of my pregnancy, hoping that it would offer some kind of pain relief as opposed to drugs.

My contractions were coming thick and fast by the time I arrived at the ward, I was using a TENS machine to try and take the edge off but they were getting unbearable. I was examined and told I was 3-4cm, and wanted to wait another 4 hours before examining me again before I got in the pool.

After two hours I was literally paralysed with the pain of contractions on the birthing ball, unable to move and just couldn't imagine waiting another two hours of that so they agreed to examine me again and found that I was 5cm so I could get in the pool.

WOW - what a difference it made. Didn't so much dull the pain of the contractions but in between I was able to talk and even joke a little, and felt so much more human. It was a lovely temperature and really just chilled me out.

Unfortunately after 3 hours of being in the pool and pushing for an hour my waters had to be broken and there was meconium in them, so I had to jump out and push on the bed for an hour, which was pretty horrific to be honest. Everyone's different but I honestly couldn't recommend the water more. I actually didn't have any other pain relief, which I'm quite proud of (--although I was screaming for it in the final hour, when it was too late--)

Good luck smile

CityDweller Wed 24-Apr-13 15:31:31

I just had my DD at a home waterbirth last week. I can safely say there is no way in hell I would have managed without the water, especially as I didn't get on with the gas and air at all. I had a 'precipitous labour' and once my contractions started they came thick and fast, with little respite in between them during the active 1st stage. I got into the pool at 2cm dilated, on mw advice, as I was in agony and getting stressed out about only being 2cm and being in so much pain... I gave birth less than 3 hrs later. The pain relief upon getting in the water was incredible and I suspect one of the reasons I went from 2cm to pushing so damn quickly was because the water helped relax me and then, as my mw put it, my cervix just 'yawned open' continuously (ouch ouch ouch!). Much easier to get in comfortable positions for contractions and then to manoeuvre into good positions when I started pushing. And as someone up-post said, it calmed me down and every time it was topped up with more hot water it gave an added level of relief.

Highly recommend it - if I was ever to do this again then there's no way I'd do a natural birth without it.

I planned one with DS after seeing red-bikini-girl on OBEM make it look so easy.

The water was amazing for pain relief, so relaxing I actually managed to sleep between contractions!

I would say, don't be disappointed if you don't end up giving birth in the pool. I had to get out to complications (common and easily managed, nothing to panic about) and labour was taking too long.

By all means plan for it, but don't set your heart on it just incase.

Good luck smile

birdbrain17 Wed 24-Apr-13 15:53:09

I just had my first last week and planned on a water birth as plenty of hot baths was all that got me through the aches and pains of being pregnant, but when they broke my waters (I was induced because of problems with my blood) baby had done loads of meconium. I spent half my contractions begging the mw to let me in the water which obviously she wouldn't, but I survived labour anyway and already look forward to having more kids and doing it all again....So plan for a water birth if thats what you want but don't be disappointed if it doesn't work out, keep your options open and good luck, labour is an incredible experience first time trust your body!!

I had a water birth with my first and not with my second (had my second in Ireland where they don't do water births and, anyway, was only in the hospital for about an hour before he was born so migth not have had the time!)

As it happened, someone had just finished using it when I arrived. Most of my labour in hospital (was 5cm when I arrived) was spend waiting for the pool to be ready as it took 45 minutes to empty, 45 minutes to fill up again to be sterilised, 1 hour to sit sterilising, I think, 45 minutes to empty again and 45 minutes to fill up! So I arrived at the hospital around midnight and got in the pool around 4am!

My waters broke the minute I got in the water and my little girl was born about 20 minutes later after about 5 pushes. I can report that I did not have the ring of fire that you hear about (though I didn't have that with DC2 either) and it was nice and calm and peaceful all 'round.

I did tear and bleed quite a bit.

Keeping your options open is the absolute best attitude for labour, I think but it was definitely nice to get in the warm pool after standing around breathing and labouring and watching it fill up forEVER!

Oh, and I think I had mini-micro-sleeps between contractions while waiting for the pool - was leaning on the edge of the pool and breathing and slipping in and out of sleep a little, I think!

GreatSoprendo Wed 24-Apr-13 17:05:56

I have nothing to compare it to, but had my first baby 2 weeks ago by water birth. Got to hospital after waters had broken in the morning at 3cm dilated, and sat on a ball with tens and gas and air until 4.30 ish when I got into the pool at 8cm. My beautiful son arrived at 730pm. No drugs other than gas and air.

I won't lie - it was very painful! But then that was always going to be the case however I gave birth and was probably largely due to him being back to back and also being a gigantic 9lb 12 oz! I was scared to take off my tens to get into the pool but the MW was right - it was much more effective than the tens. Not pain relieving as such, more relaxing and taking the edge off and enabling me to get into a comfortable position. The main benefit for me was I could stay upright - shoulders and arms over the edge of the pool. The two times i had to lie on a bed before I got into the pool for examinations I was in sheer agony - waves of pain in my back that had me screaming. The pool relaxed me and helped me to focus on what I needed to do - I just zoned out the rest of the world and got on with it. Being upright over the edge of the pool also gives you something to bear down on which really helped me. The pool room was dimly lit and the midwife was always there (they have to stay with you in a water birth so you get one to one care) but was very unobtrusive and supportive.

The main thing for me was that it seemed the most relaxing and least shocking entry to the world for my baby. When he was lifted above the water and handed to me he had his eyes open and was happily gurgling to himself - no crying until about an hour later when he had his vitamin k injection. Got out of the pool with my son still attached to deliver the placenta on a comfortable bean bag thing. They left the cord unclamped for about 20 mins as I requested, and he had a quick feed while we lay there. Overall a lovely calm introduction to the world for baby!

I would really recommend it and would hope to do it again next time (if I can be assured that LO is a little bit smaller than this one was!)

HTH and good luck to you!

RightUpMyRue Wed 24-Apr-13 17:15:48

I had my first on a hospital ward, very traditional position- on the bed on my back. Had all the pain relief I was offered- G+A pethidine and an epidural. still only took 20 minutes to push her out but wasn't somethin gI wanted to repeat.

I gave birth 2 weeks ago in the water at a midwife led birth centre. Only needed G+A and halved the time I was in labour and only took 10 minutes to push him out.

I would definitely recommend both a midwife led unit and a water birth.
If we have another I will be going to back the midwife unit and using the pool again. Really helps with relaxing you which makes it much quicker.

Good luck! smile

Thank you for all your advice grin I really hope I can get a water birth as so many people seem to have a much better experience.

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