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Have you requested a waterbirth but not had one in the end? Why?

(37 Posts)
charleypops Wed 16-Mar-05 11:27:56

Ideally I would like a waterbirth, but everytime I mention this to my gp or local midwives, they always say something along the lines of "well, you know, there are lots of things that can happen and you could very easily end up having a completely different type of birth to one of those, so don't set your heart on it".

So, I'm just wondering what these things might be so I can be a bit more prepared should I have to have a different sort of birth... and reasons to not take any notice of.


bundle Wed 16-Mar-05 11:29:49

have you thought about having one at home? i know people who hired a pool and reported on it v favourably. at hospital i'd imagine that a) it could be bagsed by someone else or b) you could have interventions which their protocols prohibit the use of a pool

starlover Wed 16-Mar-05 11:31:42

I think it's the same with whatever you set your heart on for the birth... you just don't know what will happen, and it very often turns out different to how you had imagined it.

If you end up needing monitoring or need a drip then I think you can't be in the water because you're hooked up to things.
You could progress really quickly and not have time to get in!

I think what they probably mean is don't set your heart on it, because you don't want to be disappointed should things take a different turn... just go in open-minded, but if a water birth is what you want then go for it, and don't let them put you off!

charleypops Wed 16-Mar-05 11:33:42

I'd love to have a home birth, but it's my first and my hospital's at least half an hour away, so to be sensible I've decided to go into hospital instead.

NomDePlume Wed 16-Mar-05 11:39:53

FWIW, I had my heart set on a waterbirth. It was noted on my maternity notes and when the time came to go to hospital and give birth they were aware of my wishes. I was moved to the room with the 'pool' (just an enormous bath) and got ready to labour in the water. At this point I was in active, fast and painful labour (3cm upon arrival at hospital).

I stepped in and found that it really wasn't what I wanted . My labour was the sort that needed me to be 100% mobile in order to manage the pain. Sitting/crouching/lying were all no-nos for me. The pain was unbearable anyway, but it was at least manageable when I was upright and walking. DD was born in just 3 hours from start to finish (very quick 1st labour), no pain relief (not really enough time), perfectly normal with a great APGAR & birth weight.

What I'm saying with all that ranting is that yes, you may really love the idea of a water birth and there may be no physiological reason why you shoiuld'nt have a waterbirth, but in the end you may well simply not want one. None of us know how we'll get through labour until it happens. We all need/want different things.

In the hospital were my DD was born they had a reasonably tight policy on waterbirths, they were a no-no if you were labouring with a pre-term, over-due or induced baby and if you had one of quite a comprehensive list of conditions (can;t think if them now, it was almost 3 years ago!)

Gem13 Wed 16-Mar-05 11:42:02

DS had his arm behind his head and was well and truly stuck.

Started off in water at a birthing ccentre but ending up with him being delivered by forceps and ventouse at another hospital.

tammybear Wed 16-Mar-05 11:44:46

i wanted to have a waterbirth, but dd came a month early and by the time i got to the hospital i was 10cm dilated so that all went out the window instead i ended up giving birth on a bed which i didnt wanna do either. i wanted to at least be standing but i hadnt eaten all day so my legs were really weak, and i had no pain relief either. but i have to say if i have any more children, i would be quite happy to have the same labour as i did with dd, but i doubt that would be possible

albert Wed 16-Mar-05 11:50:41

I got to the hospital at 9 1/2 cms dilated and was told they might not have time to fill the pool...they did though and it was absolute bliss. But then DS got stuck because he was a stargazer baby so I had to clamber out of the pool and have a ventouse delivery.

MissChief Wed 16-Mar-05 11:57:12

I found water the best pain-relief by a long, long way though unfortunately after v long labour wasn't able to give birth that way.
if you really, really want guaranteed access to pool (assuming medically okay at the time of yr labour) could always hire one for use at home or even to take into hospital with you (think some allow this). This will get round problem if pool already in use by someone else. HTH

ThomCat Wed 16-Mar-05 11:57:59

I wanted a water birth, had it all planned etc, got to the birth centre fully dilated and ready to push and knew all I wanted to do was stand up and push her out. If I'd laboured at the hospital I would have probaly got in the pool, but as it was I ran a bath at home got in, hated it it was all wrong and couldn't lay down at all, i had to pace the house and then get on all fours for contractions so it just didn't work out as I had thought. What I had thought would be nice and what my body needed me to do were two different things.

TwinSetAndPearls Wed 16-Mar-05 11:58:46

I had a waterbirth on my plan but when I got to Guys the birthing pool was in use, they put me in the bath to get me started but I became a woman possessed demanding every drug under the sun. i then moved on to gas and air and eventually on an epidural as I just found the pain too much.

colditzmum Wed 16-Mar-05 12:01:59

I went very overdue and had to be induced at a different hospital than the one I had booked the pool at!

hotmama Wed 16-Mar-05 12:06:12

I planned to have a waterbirth with as little intervention as possible.

However,after 3 days in labour, 2 visits to the hospital (I was progressing very slowly) I eventally got admitted on the 3rd day at 8cm dilated. At this point, I said ignore my birth plan and give me the drug menu NOW! DD was eventually born by forceps after being fetally monitored as her heartbeat was dodgy and meconium was in my waters when they eventually broke. Oh yes, and I then lost 4 pints of blood!

The point of this is before having a baby I had no idea what to expect, I intended to have a waterbirth but always kept my options open as I had no idea what giving birth would be like. So feel free to plan but keep you options open and don't feel disappointed if your birth experience isn't what you expect. The most important thing is that you and you dd/ds are O.K.

I still would like a waterbirth in the future though.

wild Wed 16-Mar-05 12:29:16

I really fancied a waterbirth, made lots of tapes to listen to etc etc. In the end was induced, the bath was available so I could have done just that but for some reason just went right off the idea of water, even getting in a normal bath to relax seemed not the thing. You just don't know what you'll feel like, not nec worse btw, just different

MrsDoolittle Wed 16-Mar-05 12:32:11

I was all set for a waterbirth - my midwife was/is one of my best friends. However, my waters broke and were stained with muconium, so I ended up being induced!!

grumpyfrumpy Wed 16-Mar-05 12:32:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

miranda2 Wed 16-Mar-05 12:39:50

Does anyone know what the protocols are that are likely to mean you couldn't have the water? I know meconium in the waters (but why?), but what else should I know to refuse if I want the water? Is induction automatically a no-no for example?

Blackduck Wed 16-Mar-05 12:41:10

Wanted to, but induced.....(monitoring is the problem with inductions I think....)

franke Wed 16-Mar-05 12:52:15

I'm another who got into the pool and got straight back out again - just didn't want to be there, v. disappointing.

I think different hospitals have different protocols regarding water birth. I was a vbac but was still 'allowed' to try the pool, I don't think other hospitals would be happy about it. Also depends on how experienced and confident the staff are with waterbirth.

charleypops Wed 16-Mar-05 14:28:21

How interesting that some of you that said it it just didn't feel right once you'd got in and went off the whole idea. I never really thought of your body telling/asking you what to do rather than you (or the staff) making the decisions!

Oo Gem and Hotmama! Poor you! Hope you've gotten over that - sounds very traumatic

Well, I've found out about those "walking epidurals" which sound almost magical (as I'm sure I'll be wanting to move around and definitely NOT give birth on my back if I can help it at all!) so I'll try for one of those if the waterbirth isn't going to happen.

otto Wed 16-Mar-05 14:33:57

That is interesting that lots of you said that you didn't feel right in the water. I felt like that and thought I was just a little odd. I felt much happier when I was able to move around, try different positions, hang onto dp, drink tea etc.

Pruni Wed 16-Mar-05 14:39:25

Message withdrawn

thedame71 Wed 16-Mar-05 14:41:48

I laboured in the pool with DS1 which was fab but when it came to the pushing he had the cord round his neck (3 times it turned out) so had to be transfered from birth centre to hospital by ambulance and he was born by ventouse.

So you may start but not finish in the water! xxxx

ks Wed 16-Mar-05 14:43:09

Message withdrawn

motherinferior Wed 16-Mar-05 14:43:22

I don't think water would have helped with my first labour, where the only thing that worked for the pain was walking about.

I did hire a pool for my second birth, which was at home, and my midwife did say 'you may go nowhere near it, you know,' but pretty nicely, really, in a 'just-warning-you' way.

It was bloody marvellous, that pool, btw.

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