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Can anyone share their waterbirth stories?

(108 Posts)
photographerlady Thu 24-Jan-13 10:18:29

Anyone willing to share the ins and outs of their labor while having a waterbirth. I keep reading up on it but would love to know the nitty gritty first hand.

lolisa137 Tue 31-May-16 15:23:51

The relaxing effect of water, with its support and warmth, can help you through your labour. See more at

monicawoodlm Sat 28-Nov-15 11:56:01

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

photographerlady Tue 07-May-13 15:59:18

thanks for sharing!

Wolfiefan Fri 26-Apr-13 14:04:30

DS born in a pool. Best pain relief EVER! Felt calmer in the water and able to move as I wanted nice and easily. Room quiet but two midwives there and DH so felt well supported.
Just remember getting and and breathing out a slow "ahhhhhh" of relief. Midwife said everyone does that.
DD. wanted home water birth. She had other ideas!

carynh Fri 26-Apr-13 14:00:51

I had a waterbirth at home with my little girl & as I've only had one baby so far I have nothing to compare it with.
I had a relatively long labour (27 hours) but will say the pool definitely eased the pain. I was only allowed to get in when I was 4cm dilated. Spent most of the time in the pool, occasionally getting out when the midwife wanted me to move around or go to the toilet.
My waters wouldn't break so even though I was 10cm dilated for a while, nothing was happening so they got me out the pool, broke my waters & the baby was born 40 minutes later. The pushing part was easy as pie! I actually didn't consciously push because I was worried I was going to poo in the water. I just let my muscles push her down the birth canal. I gave one tiny little push at the end & unfortunately tore (it was a 2nd degree tear) but otherwise she slipped out really easily. Unfortunately, the placenta wouldn't deliver afterwards so I had to be transferred to hospital but I would definitely do a water birth again.

AMR73 Thu 28-Mar-13 19:02:32

My 7 week son was born in the hospital birthing pool (8lb 4oz) and the birth went smoothly with no pain relief required (I believe that the Marie Mongan Hypnobirthing course I went on made a huge difference to my approach). I wore a long t -shirt with buttons down the front for skin to skin contact immediately after delivery. Have been told that my delivery was quick for a first baby. Would def recommend- maybe you could go take a look at the one in your hospital?

NTMummy059 Wed 27-Mar-13 19:14:31

This has been amazing to read.. Am now starting to want a waterbirth after all your stories smile

photographerlady Fri 15-Mar-13 16:21:05

thank you again to all the kind ladies sharing their stories

Thirstysomething Mon 28-Jan-13 11:44:19

PS, I can't remember how long I was in the pool for each time, but hours and hours... midwives kept water at lovely temperature. Much hotter in 3rd birth and that helped a lot. Agree with the post which said less invasive if you are in the pool - I HATE those midwife 'inspections' - one midwife was so rough on my first labour that it hurt more than anything else!
With dc3 I went into the MLU at 7pm, was in the pool by 9pm, had him at 12.40 and was bizarrely at home by 2.45am... the midwives literally threw us in the car. Bit shellshocked!

Thirstysomething Mon 28-Jan-13 11:37:25

Had water births with all three of mine, one in hospital and two in birthing centres (MLUs). Pg with number 4 and couldn't consider not having a water birth, even though it means there is absolutely no access to drugs (MLU is twenty mins by car from hospital).

My first time I stayed on a bed for ages, but was hating it, just couldn't get into a comfortable position. Finally got into the pool (a big shamrock shaped thing with handles and ledges etc) and it was bliss - suddenly I could stretch when I needed to, curl up when I needed to, was warm, supported by the water, etc etc. Gas and air over the side of the bath, husband holding my hands (or rather I was gripping his), I was on my front most of the time.

The same for the second (except for a hairy moment when i overheard the new midwife tell the outgoing midwife that she had never done a water birth before...) and third was the best of all.

In each case I gave birth in the pool, on all fours, and turned around to be given the baby, which I cuddled in the warm pool, heaven. I got out onto the bed for the delivery of the placenta each time because it was a managed stage - and didn't notice anything going on because I was far too busy getting to know my babies. I tore with no 1 and 2 and not 3 - which I put down to being more relaxed and a quicker pushing stage.

(I also had pethidine on a bed for a previously known still birth - obviously horrid, but made far worse by being on 'dry land' and the yucky pethidine, so I do have something to compare water births to.)

The downsides are something I hear from other people -
Husband/midwives/the cleaners have told me that it looks like a bloodbath (ha).
A friends husband is 'hilarious' describing how the midwife gave him a fishing net to fish out any pooh (don't know if I did, I have never asked...)
It can slow things down - although I don't think that happened to me.

As I say - neither of the first two things are important when you are actually giving birth, you simply don't notice - and if it is slowing things down, you just get out...?

If you are the sort of person who loves wallowing in a hot bath, then I think it is wonderful. I have a friend who is a short shower active type girl, and she tried the bath and didn't like it at all. She ended up squatting on the floor...! You just don't know till you try I suppose.

The last thing to say is that I have been very lucky to have three water births with decent size and shape birthing pools. I have heard stories of girls who haven't seen the pools before they went into hospital, who have ended up in a small bath - not much good imho.

Lottie5mummy Sun 27-Jan-13 20:16:32

One word.....amazing!!

Feeling of weightlessness fab...I was already 8cm dilated by time I got to hospital (first baby). I was able to use the gas and air in the pool and she was born in 40 mins. I did do a small 'oopsie' ;) but was all dealt with very quickly and with humour (midwife produced a kitchen sieve and scooped it out). Also water nice and warm, great handles on side to grip when contractions in full flow and handy ledges to use for your feet. I don't have a land birth to compare it to but would choose water again.

scarlettsmummy2 Sun 27-Jan-13 19:43:32

I did'nt have to wait to have my stitches done luckily, although I was only in the pool for about 45 minutes. The midwife drained the water before I delivered the placenta, and then a couple of minutes later I had my stitches done for a second degree tear.

photographerlady Sun 27-Jan-13 18:59:55

This has been an amazing read thank you to the ladies who shared so far.

LadyMargolotta Sun 27-Jan-13 17:56:31

LikeCandy - the midwife will keep the temperature of the water. Cold water could potentially stimulate the baby's breathing reflex, which is why the baby should be born into warm water, the same temperature as the body 37 degree C.

I've had two water briths.

easylife73 Sun 27-Jan-13 15:37:10

No, don't drain the pool for a small amount of poo...scoop it out really quickly with a net...bit like the five second food rule I guess!

easylife73 Sun 27-Jan-13 15:36:18

Baby can't drown by being born in water....when they are inside you they are in a sac of amniotic fluid, so until they take their first breath of proper air their lungs are already full of fluid. They can't take that first breath until they are out of the water.

LikeCandy Sun 27-Jan-13 12:16:56

So glad this topic has come up! I'm 30w+4 and have been considering the pool.
Glad to see that it's possible to labour in the water and then come out to give birth, I think I'd be too nervous of her drowning to actually give birth underwater blush

Daft question alert: if you do poo in the pool do they not then change the water?

Gemimapuddleduck Sun 27-Jan-13 11:47:09

Amazing experience, had both ds 1 and 2 in water and wld thoroughly recommend, helps with the pains, easy to move around in the water and i delivered my second ds by myself smile
Go for it I would say, a lovely experience all roundx

Equimum Sun 27-Jan-13 11:45:32

I laboured in water about four weeks ago, but got out to deliver. I spent seven hours in the pool (first baby) and cannot describe how beneficial it was as an analgesic. By the time the midwife arrived, I was in quite a lot of discomfort and getting in the pool was a massive relief. It was only a couple of hours later, though, that I realised just how beneficial it was. I got out to go to the loo, had a contraction and it was complete agony. Got back in the pool and everything was completely manageable again.

Although I had wanted to deliver in water, I wasn't able to get into a position that allowed the baby to drop down. I did end up with a serious tear, but it was a big baby and I feel the whole experience would have been much less manageable had I not been in the water for long, and, therefore, been so relaxed. If we have another baby, water will definitely been involved....I would defiantly have needed other pain relief had I not been in the pool.

One thing to think about, though, my husband spent a lot of time topping up the hot water. If you are having a HB, it might be worth considering making sure you have an extra person around who can deal with that, as losing your primary birthing partner constantly can be one a bit difficult to deal with.

loverofwine Sun 27-Jan-13 09:19:42

I had waterbirths at home for DS3 and DS4. They were two of the happiest moments of my life.

The midwives encouraged me to let go and let my body do what it wanted and I flopped around in the water, listening to my favourite tracks whilst riding through the contractions. The water really minimised the pain and it was a truly pleasurable experience both times.

Best was being the one to catch the baby, put him straight on my breast and cuddle. Both of us slightly shivering and shocked but suddenly two people rather than one.

I think the key was the midwife team whom I had got to know throughout my pregnancy. They were relaxed and friendly. Like having friends, holding your hand through what was a completely wonderful process. In fact for the second time my DH was fairly redundant. He handed out canapes to the midwives and posted twitter/facebook updates because I was getting the keys too wet hopping in and out of the water.

If you have a straightforward pregnancy and a supportive home birth team, live quite close to a hospital (just in case) I would recommend it. When DS was born in the evening we cleared up, had a curry, went to bed and woke up with a slightly larger but very happy and relaxed family.

NotADragonOfSoup Sun 27-Jan-13 08:42:59

I delivered the placenta naturally in the pool. There was no mention of getting out.

One thing - I did have to wait to "dry out" before they could stitch my tear. Not a problem really but they can't do it whilst the tissues are all soft from the water apparently.

5madthings Sat 26-Jan-13 23:25:58

They can't make you get out.

The consultant told me I had to, the midwife who was actually there when I delivered said it was fine to stay in.

zcos Sat 26-Jan-13 23:09:04

5madthings it depends what hospital your in whether you need to get out to deliver placenta depends on their policy.

zcos Sat 26-Jan-13 22:46:55

hi I have only just had my first and was lucky enough to get a pool birth as I had wanted. the words "the pool is ready now" is the best sentence I have ever heard!
as soon as I entered the water I felt so relaxed ...did it naked which assisted with that ...within minutes my body was pushing all on its own! I was so relaxed between contractions I almost fell asleep and the inbuilt pillow that I thought was so comfy turned out to be a handle that I bruised my head pushing against. I didn't poo though I kept thinking I was going to but I had nothing left in me shock
from my experience and other tales as it was a water birth and things were going well there was little interference from the midwifes just heart monitoring of baby. and when her head came out my h could see her and me at the same time and babys head moved to adjust soldiers for birth all on her own with help of the water. I touched her first but needed help to pick her out she was like a bar of soap! I didn't have any gas and air during the birth had lots for the stiches and to celebrate afterwards!
think d was very relaxed during birth and now loves baths. midwives said they love pool born babies cos they are nice and clean! they don't bath newborns for 24hrs. nexttime I would love to have pool birth at home! midwives said I should after I finished next time and I was like hell yeah! gave birth to placenta naturally midwives pursuaded me cos they said if I was doing birth naturally I should try that took ages and felt as hard as the birth at some points wouldn't recommend it!

SeymoreInOz Sat 26-Jan-13 22:44:13

I had a hospital water birth with DC3 (I had epidurals with DC1&2) and I loved it. I would definitely want another one if I was going to give birth again.

I was 6cm when I arrived in hospital and got straight in the pool. The warm water was very soothing and it was so nice to be so floaty and mobile after months of sciatica and a huge bump weighing me down.

I had gas and air throughout and kept dropping the mouth piece in the pool as the contractions were quite intense. This wasn't a problem. The MWs kept an eye on DS using the doppler under water and a mirror to see where the head was up to. They also kept bringing me cups of water and a straw which I really needed! I ended up in the squatting position leaning over the side, clinging on to DH. I was only in the water for 40 mins before DS was born, luckily I'd had a <ahem> clear out before labour so there was nothing to sieve out of the water! I didn't do any pushing, my body seemed to take over. The only slight difficulty was that when the crowning started I was half standing because of the intensity, it's really important to keep the whole head under water and the midwives were trying to talk me down into the water in the midst of my shouting. They were able to sort it (after I moved down slightly) by filling the pool to the brim. They had to ease his body out because he was quite large but he was passed through my legs to me and we cuddled in the pool. He was shocked by the speed at which he'd come through the birth canal so he was given some oxygen while I held him in the water. I had a small 2nd degree tear, I didn't feel it at the time though.

All in all it was lovely.

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