Birth Pool v's Normal Birth 😕(65 Posts)
Hi I'm 31 weeks and nows the time everyone's started to ask "what your labour plans?"... we'll to be honest iv not really given it much thought I keep thinking to my self "iv got pleanty of time to think about that"
What I would like to know Is what do people recommend... (Pros and cons) iv thought about using the birth pool but I'm not sure this is my first baby and not sure what to expect... any opinions will be great xxx
I was dead set on not having a birthing pool. I'd heard that it slows labour down and it sounds like a lot of faff (homebirth). But my midwife said it was excellent pain relief and couldn't recommend it more highly. So, I've got one in a box on the changing table.
It's up to you though, do you need to commit one way or the other right now?
Just see how you feel and keep your options open. I think it's best not to be too prescriptive about what you want, incase certain options aren't possible at the time.
I quite liked the idea of a birth pool whilst pregnant, but when I was in labour, the midwife asked if I wanted to use it, and I literally couldn't think of anything worse. Several of my friends loved using them though.
I wanted one with Dd1 but the birthing centre was out of action and I ended up in a theatre anyway. DD2 was a high risk pregnancy and I was induced so that was that. What I'm saying is, you don't know will happen on the day. Put down for one; you don't have to do it on the day. Good luck.
I put on my first birth plan that I might want to use the pool. I only got in once labour was well and truly established. I let out a long relieved "aaaaahhhhh" sound when I got in. The mw said all women did. It really helped me.
Maybe put it as a maybe!
The idea of not being able to get in the pool stresses me out. That's how good it is! My last labour was fast in the water too.
I spent some time in the birthing pool, but it made little/no difference to my birthing experience, I think largely because I was very tired (I had a very long early labour, so by the time I got to the pool I hadn't slept for four nights).
I'm almost certain that if I'd had a straight forward labour the pool would have been a welcome relief. So it's worth putting he pool down as a preference and seeing how you feel at the time.
The people I know who have the happiest birth stories have kept an open mind about their birth plan. I know that if I'd had my heart set on a certain type of birth, I'd have been disappointed in how DD's birth turned out. But because all I wanted was to have her safely and get her home quickly, despite having a relatively invasive birth experience, it was a happy one, and I wouldn't change a thing about it.
i didnt like the idea of waterbirths. I know where i am on dry land.
I've had 2 home water births and now dc3 is on the way I'm planning to same again without a doubt recommend!
Thank you everyone for your opinions I think I will put it down as a first plan now I know that if iv got any aches and pains anyway the first thing I do is have a bath so it might help me in labour x
I was at 7cm with the tens when they ran the pool. I was scared of taking the tens off as it had helped me so much but I was amazed at how brilliant the pool was. Would def recommend and do it again. I think water only slows down labour before you're in established labour btw for whoever mentioned it upthread
First birth the thought of a birthing pool was disgusting to me. I did not want to sit in a pool of my own muck ... However after several hours of established labour when the midwife asked if I'd like to try it for pain relief and I could get out whenever I wanted, I agreed. I absolutely loved it. They made me get out at the end as they thought baby might be in distress and they needed to check - I did not want to leave my sanctuary of sanity! I ended up giving birth moments after. Similar happened with my second birth.
So I love the birthing pool for pain relief but haven't actually had a water birth. So my input would be to keep your opinions open.
I had the pool on my birthing plan and used it for the final stage of labour when the time came. I would have liked to have used it slightly earlier but the room was occupied by someone else until that stage. I was 8cm when I got into the pool and found the water to be really soothing. Within 5 minutes of getting in, it was time to start pushing and I delivered her in the water not long after.
Like a pp, I recommend having an idea of what you would prefer to happen but keeping an open mind - although my plan was a natural birth, I considered epidural, drugs and other options when I was in labour and finding it difficult. With my husband and the midwife's encouragement, I was able to stick to my plan which was lucky but I never expected it to go that way.
Thank you to everyone who took time to give me their stories and advice. I definitely want to put it down on my plan now but I know it just depends on what happens on the day
When I arrived on the birthing unit the midwife asked if I wanted her to run the water for the pool, I said yes as had heard it was great for pain relief, for me it didn't make a difference to the pain, I kind of floated in the water in between contractions and pushed in there for around an hour but got really hot and bothered, so decided to get out. I was much happier pushing on a large mat on all fours on the floor with a fan on me, should have known that would be the case really, I prefer to be cool when in pain.
Oh and as far as slowing down labour goes this luckily wasn't the case for me, I went in the pool at 5cm and within 90mins I was fully dilated and ready to push
I used the pool. definitely would like to have it again this time, but I guess we'll see what happens!
I'm 32 weeks and also thinking about this but it's my second pregnancy. I used the pool with DS1 and was 7cm and had tens on when I got to hospital. The pain relief was amazing. Between that and the gas and air I was literally floating. But I was so relaxed my contractions slowed right down so they made me get out the pool, broke my waters and I delivered on the bed. Baby was back to back so would have preferred the extra pain relief the water gave me but at least he was born without complications. Really want to give birth in the pool this time. Need to not get too relaxed!!
I desperately wanted a water birth but was not allowed one as I developed pre eclampsia and so lost my "low risk" status and had to be induced on a ward in hospital.
DH and I had undertaken a hypnobirthing course and had been practicing the techniques. I wanted to use them alongside gas and air, Tens machine then later water and possibly pethadine... I was relatively open to it. First baby.
I actually gave birth using nothing but my hypnobirthing techniques. I was so in the zone that no one knew I was in labour until she arrived. Can't recommend it enough
Con: my sister is a student midwife and hates water births because they kill her back!
I did mention the possibility of using the pool on my birth plan (pwaaahahahahahaha!!!...the audacity of me thinking that I could have a "plan"...still, it gave me some illusion of control) but- like pp have said- once labour was in full flow it was the most unappealing prospect I could imagine. Mind you, DS was back to back so I don't think it would have made much difference to the pain anyway; the gas and air certainly didn't.
Also agree about not being too prescriptive about what you want during the birth; I didn't want an epidural/forceps delivery but that's exactly what I ended up having- was the only option left at the time, other than an emergency section.
Dont buy into the whole I will do it in the pool with no pain relief and it will be magical thing, it might go that way my 2 friends before me had their babies that way I was all ready to do the same but had reduced movements induction, back to back then a section.
Aim for what you want but prepare for it not going that way that way your not upset at not getting your plan. Btw my induction and c section were actually fine really easy.
Oh yeah, my birth was very 'easy' from my pov, despite the complications! I was given an epidural (no choice in the matter in the end) so didn't feel a thing during the actual birth. Even in surgery being prepped for a possible emergency C-section I was very chipper; chatting to the anaesthetist, midwife, etc. asking what was going on, the procedures, equipment, etc. Even having a bit of a laugh and joke. The whole thing was very pleasant! Recovered nice and quickly too, just a small tear. Just because things don't always go to plan, doesn't mean that it's going to be a negative experience, so don't worry too much.
I've had one if each a hospital birth using just a TENS machine (quick spontaneous labour) and my second home waterbirth! I would definitely recommend the pool it was amazing and my second d labour was 16 hrs (perhaps the pool slowed it). Keep your options open if you can. As ours was a home birth we had to order the pool hire etc but if you are thinking pool at hospital or birthing centre then you can always put it in the plan. Remember that's all it is a plan. That would be my top tip be flexible and be prepared to change your mind, no one knows how you'll feel when you get to the labour.
I gave birth in a corner bath at the hospital, it was amazing! I'm not usually a long time in the bath person either.
The best thing I found was to properly relax between contractions. My midwife kept telling me to relax and I thought I was until I really concentrated and could see how tense I was. When you let go and let your body flop between the contractions it gives you so much more energy for the next one.
It was my first baby and I wanted it to be in a birth centre, as natural as possible.
I was in early labour for 4 days as the head wasn't fully engaged so my waters wouldn't break to bring in active labour. I'd been waking up every half hour or so at first, then more frequently for 4 nights so was exhausted.
Anyway I went to the birth centre 6 hours after I'd had a sweep as contractions were closer together and slowly getting stronger.
I'd been using my tens machine to manage pain since the contractions started getting harder to manage (early evening) until 2 the next morning (I used the ball for a while which helped). The midwife broke my waters at 3, and after that I tried a tiny bit of gas and air but it gave me a headache and made me feel so sick, so I didn't want it. I got in the pool after 3, and felt so relaxed. The only reason I got out was because at 4am the midwife suggested a pethadine injection to send me to sleep, as I literally couldn't keep my eyes open at all. Then I woke up at 6.45, and was literally ready to push, and at 6.58am my baby was born, with me laying back on the bed as that's how I felt most comfortable.
That said, if I didn't need to sleep, I'd if definitely tried to stay in the pool much longer, even give birth in it.
The warm water relaxes you so much I found.
As I said my labour plan was as natural as possible. I honestly think that had I not been physically drained, I would have coped much better with labour. Next time (in a few years) I hope to also have an as natural a birth as possible in a birth centre.
(I by no means mean any disrespect to anyone, and think every woman needs to do what is best for herself and the baby. It's just as natural as possible, without interventions and no epidural, was my personal preference).
Good luck op
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