Advanced search

Got questions about giving birth? Know what to expect and when to expect it, with the Mumsnet Pregnancy Calendar.

Home Birth Tips

(28 Posts)
fishface2 Wed 08-Jul-09 21:35:25

I'm 40 weeks on Friday and planning a home birth. Any tips at all on this would be appreciated. I'm a first timer.

herladyship Wed 08-Jul-09 21:43:20

just relax & enjoy it! good luck smile

Reallytired Wed 08-Jul-09 21:56:16

I assume that your midwife has already given you a list of things to get. The midwife will deal with the mess of the birth itself. Normally you have a plastic sheet which the midwive puts inco pads on. The whole lot gets incinerated.

I suggest that you get a waterproof matress cover for your bed. The amount of lochia (bleeding after the birth, a bit like a period) you will have is unbelivable. I found that it helped to sleep over a pampers change mat

I found a TENS machine useful

Of course


Good luck and I hope it goes well

MrsGum Wed 08-Jul-09 21:58:47

lol at wine, biscuit, tea and coffee

smallblessings Wed 08-Jul-09 22:16:25

I 2nd the plastic sheet for your bed, mine was ruined - quite unbelievable. Plastic sheeting in area you plan to give birth - even if you are having a pool. candles are nice. Good luck - it is wonderful. smile

JoesMummy09 Wed 08-Jul-09 22:20:18

Congratulations on choosing a home birth! (sorry I sound a bit NCT!) I had one for my first baby 3 months ago and it was fab.

I got a birthing pool which was great for pain relief. Bought it as renting was just as expensive. We used a Bassine birthing pool and got all the extra bits with it, like tarpaulin and pumps. Checked out loads of deals and this was the best value IMO.

Make sure you have torch to hand (for looking up your fanjo), a mirror (again for fanjo inspection)

Tell your husband where all the towels are that are ok to use get covered in blood, or he will use the new, white Designer's Guild ones instead of the brown ones from the back of the airing cupboard angry

Dust sheets (as in painting and decorating). You can then get birthing partner to spread these over any precious bits of furniture your midwives might try to commandeer as fanjo-inspection-coach (in our case pale blue linen sofa).

Drinking straws. Little bottles of water (more in a min on that)

Bucket. In case you're sick.

Sieve for fishing things out of the birthing pool which you will then want to deposit in the bucket.

Biscuits and tea for midwives. You want them awake!

Snack for husband or you, ready made because you may feel sick.

Relaxing music. And think about your lighting.

Strong chair for hanging over/off.

Blanket for afterwards because you can feel very cold after you deliver if you get a little bit of shock.

Incontinance pads (not sure what for, we were told to get them. I had 10 in the packet and used 1 when my waters broke and 1 for bleeding after delivery and still have 7 left. Not sure what happened to the other one...)

Little bottle of water by the loo for squirting over fanjo when going for first wee (and all the other wees for next 10 days).

Get everything together in a big box, with any help sheets you want to use (for birthing positions etc) and your birth plan on top. Put stuff you'll need in the bathroom next to the loo (kitchen paper for dabbing, paper pants, maternity pads etc) in advance so you don't have to explain where/what they are to DH.

I set up a birthing area with a table for the midwife to use and chairs for us all to sit on. It was quite important this area was near the bathroom.

Well, that's all the practical stuff. It's a good idea to talk through your plans (with birthing partner) in advance and just relax and enjoy it. I also found sitting on the loo the most comfortable place to be just before I delivered blush

Best feeling finally going to bed at 6am with DH and our new baby.

JoesMummy09 Wed 08-Jul-09 22:28:09

Oh yes agree with sheet for bed.

I got an inco sheet from Loads cheaper than anything from NCT or other birth shop. It does need washing before you use it but is fabric covered so not cold and uncomfortable. Also v useful later when baby was sick on our bed/his nappy leaked.

I also got some inco bed squares. Same as the Pampers ones but cheaper.

And some milton wipes.

I keep expecting to send me "Your Special Offers" tailored for all my bed-wetting needs...

Reallytired Wed 08-Jul-09 22:31:53

Just thinking, have your CD collection ready and think a bit in advance what music you want. My twit of a husband wanted to play "Another one bites the Dust" during the second stage.

I would pick music that you can breathe comfortably in time to. Also music that does not arouse too much adrelerin.

I hope that everything goes well. I agree with smallblessings that home births are wonderful. I am still on a high from my daughter's birth 12 weeks ago.

Reallytired Wed 08-Jul-09 22:35:35

Lansinoh for helping sore nipples

Cazzr Wed 08-Jul-09 23:08:25

Hope you don't mind me tagging a question on to this thread...

I'm thinking of a home birth for the next one (not even trying yet but super broody to planning everything stupidly far in advance!) but after a waterbirth for DS1 I REALLY want to have another waterbirth, but one thing is concerning me..
How much space do you need in your house for the pool etc?

Our lounge is not very big and tho I expect we'd fit the pool in, there wouldn't be that much space around it.. Do you think this would be an issue? For the midwifes for instance?

JoesMummy09 Wed 08-Jul-09 23:54:56

Cazzr we have the smallest house. We had a birthing pool and people are always amazed we managed to get it to fit.

It was fine - we just moved the table back and put it against the other wall and squeezed round it to get into the kitchen (and also the bathroom that leads off it)

However, I am very glad I did not have to clean out the birthing pool the next day. It was rather murky blush

JoesMummy09 Thu 09-Jul-09 00:05:25

I cannot believe I forgot the most important thing!

Being at home is a benefit because you can do a few things to help with after pains that you can't do in hospital.

<those of you of a sensitive nature look away now!>

Best piece of advice from my wonderful community midwife: "pee in the shower or bath. Put 2 or 3 drops of lavender or tea tree oil in a couple of inches of water in the bath and go in there". You still need to drink lots of water or even in the bath your pee will burn.

Buy some cool gel pads and extra gauze covers from Boots/Mothercare and put the pads in the freezer. Alternatively fill condoms with a little bit of water and lie flat in the freezer for same sort of thing.

charleymouse Thu 09-Jul-09 00:31:24

paracetomal, bachs rescue remedy in sports bottle top of water, couple of mags for midwives as I just got on with it, camera for immediate pictures. (video camera, I wish now I had recorded it as you do forget.) Baby wipes for your tender bits, prune juice just in case you are constipated, arnica for healing and birth/gym ball. Goodluck. list of numbers for DH to call to announce new arrival.

Sign on door saying you do not want visitors/visitors to stop too long. As you are at home people think they can visit all times of the day/night and stop for takeaway pizza, (I kid you not). Get DH to say I think DW is tired now we will see you again soon and usher people out. My poor DH ended up spending his paternity leave making tea/coffee for everyone and missed the precious time with first baby, he did not make same mistake second time around. grin

pickyvic Thu 09-Jul-09 00:49:05

tips for home wont need any. your at home, you relax, labour is quicker, smoother and less painful that you can possibly imagine (i nearly choked when MW said i wouldnt need pain relief!) but its all true. so much nicer than hossie birth. just make sure youve got tea and coffee in for midwives! oh and dont try and do ironing same day as giving birth! (i was on such a high i couldnt sit still! ended up ironing! dont think any ironing has been done since mind you - and she is 12 on saturday! lol)

pickyvic Thu 09-Jul-09 00:50:11

and get your DH to change the bedding for nice fresh clean bedding while you get a bath after the birth! best bit was climbing back into my own bed!)

Cazzr Thu 09-Jul-09 09:29:15

Oh, I'm glad the space thing is not too much of an issue, have already mentally rearranged the furniture and got the candles out ready.
Whereas birth of DS1 was ok (induction in hospital) I can imagine a homebirth being much more relaxing.
Just simply the bed thing as I'm 6ft 2 the hospital bed on postnatal ward was too short!! Even tho my midwife had prewarned them that I would need a longer bed! Having arrived on postnatal ward at midnight I barely slept through the night and left after lunch that day, absolutely exhausted!

Just knowing I wouldn't have to do the whole packing the bags and going out with little one to the car to go home less than 24 hours after giving birth has to be a bonus!

Anyone in the southampton/new forest area? What are they like for homebirths?

smallblessings Thu 09-Jul-09 10:28:10

I defintley 2nd the video camer, I wish mine was recorded. <<<sad>>

Reallytired Thu 09-Jul-09 10:52:50

Cazzr, you still have to pack a hospital bag for in case you transfer to hospital.

Reallytired is relieved that her homebirth was not recorded. She was a bit of an idiot in the second stage as she told her midwife that her uterus was prolapsing. When the midwife told her it was the head, Reallytired told her not to be daft as she was not in that much pain. blush

mustsleep Thu 09-Jul-09 11:10:59

I third the dust sheet and pampers care sheets for your bed + some reasonable good pillows to prop you up

That's all we needed really, maybe some extra food in for the midwifes - I had two midwifes and a student and one of them had missed her tea to come out so my mum made her beans on toast lol

A torch also is something that we were asked to have in so she can examine you afterwards ...yuck!!

To be honest though the midwifes had pretty much brought everything in with them, so just relax and enjoy as much as you can, it was the easiest birth I had out of my three grin

Cazzr Thu 09-Jul-09 11:22:31

Sorry, I meant packing the bags after the birth, we had a LOT of 'stuff', if the homebirth happened, there would be no 'upping and going' so soon after birth..

Cazzr Thu 09-Jul-09 11:24:35

Oo a actual tip rather than question. Definitely have a fan available, especially at this time of year. I got super hot in labour and the fan (in the hospital) helped greatly as i found if I got too hot I threw up...

fishface2 Thu 09-Jul-09 19:06:44

Thanks so much. I really needed all of that positive feedback and advice. I'll update my story on here if anyone is interested, I know I can't get enough of hoe birth stories at the minute.

Joe's Mummy - Thanks for your time x x

Ohforfoxsake Thu 09-Jul-09 19:13:12

My top tip is put clean bed linen on the bed, cover with a plastic sheet, and towels/old sheets on top. After you've had the baby, whip the plastic sheet and all above it off whilst you are having a shower, then slip into nice fresh sheets, with beautiful newborn, a hot cup of tea and buttered toast (proper butter, thick sliced white bread).

If you can get a hypnotherapy homebirth CD (NCT do one), have a listen when you are dropping off to sleep at night. I can't believe how much it helped manage the pain and stave off giving birth until the midwife arrived.

An angle poise lamp incase you have stitches.

As others have said, you will be relaxed in your own home, and it is far more enjoyable than a hospital birth in every way.

Good luck smile

runawayquickly Thu 09-Jul-09 19:18:44

The only thing that went wrong with my amazing homebirth with dc2 was that the visitors started popping in immediately...
Make sure dp does not get the barbecue fired up and ask a few friends round. shock That 'you and me' time you have with your newborn is harder to find when you're at home. Protect it! Good luck - you won't regret your decision.

Ohforfoxsake Thu 09-Jul-09 19:30:38

That is very true!

Also, take time to rest. Its all too easy to get up and act as though things are completely normal and start washing the pots. You do need to take some time, in bed, with the baby (and DH if you like). Very precious days these.

Crikey, I'm envy!!

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: