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Birthing centre or hospital ?

(24 Posts)
Bluepetra Tue 26-May-15 17:36:02

have just been reading about birthing centres and they seem a really nice idea. Has anyone any experience of having their baby in a centre ?

sophiaslullaby Tue 26-May-15 17:51:49

Marking place as I've been pondering the same. They seem a lot more relaxed and lots are in the same ward as the delivery suites so in case of emergency you are just wheeled down the hall.

Bluepetra Tue 26-May-15 18:04:56

Yes, the one I will go and view is attached to a hospital. I'm wondering if I'd need to go to hypnobirthing or something first. Don't know. Had an epidural last time but fancy a labour where I can move around this time instead of lying down the whole time.
Be nice to hear of any experiences positive or negative.

BananaPie Tue 26-May-15 18:22:22

I had dc2 in a birthing centre (downstairs from the labour ward), and dc1 in the labour ward. I had gas and air and a tens machine as the only pain relief in both. The birth in the birthing centre was much more active, and was quicker and easier, so it's a thumbs up from me.

Not sure that I'd have gone for the birthing centre if it hadn't been co located with the labour ward though.

coneywonder Tue 26-May-15 18:24:07

I am hoping to use the birthing centre at my hospital seems you have more freedom to move about and things are more home like and comfortable (as long as everything is going well)

BanKimoon Tue 26-May-15 19:08:09

I had DS at a birthing centre and it was great. Very relaxed, comfortable, little interference. They try to make it like a 'home' environment. DH stayed with me the whole time until we were discharged, no visiting hours etc. I'm pregnant with #2 now and if I was still in London I'd definitely go back. Unfortunately now the birth centre and hospital are in opposite directions about 40 mins apart which makes it a lot harder to choose!!!!

Jellybean2011 Tue 26-May-15 20:47:14

I had DC1 in a birthing centre and would definitely recommend it. Had a lovely calm atmosphere, music, dimmed lights and a birthing pool. I gave birth on a soft padded area sitting up (think wacky warehouse type thing) and think I would have struggled been confined to a hospital bed. My husband and I were able to sleep together in a double bed afterwards while baby was in a crib next to us. This birthing centre was attached to the main labour ward. I am 36 weeks with DC2 and will be using a birthing centre again but this one is standalone and an 8min ambulance ride away from the hospital- we do have a slight worry about this but as I am low risk and have been told by the midwife there that if there are any problems they will move me to the hospital earlier than if I was at the connected birthing centre and all the midwives at the unit have special training etc I feel much more reassured x

EggOnTheFloor Tue 26-May-15 20:52:29

I had DC2 in a birthing centre. The birthing centre was attached to the hospital and a floor up from the labour ward, so could have been immediately transferred if things got difficult.

It was just a more relaxed environment. Less intervention and they had a range of techniques to keep labour active. Only methods of pain relief were tens, pethidine and g&a.

Like the above posters DH was allowed to stay with me throughout my whole stay. I stayed in one room for the duration of labour and recovery, including overnight stay.

I would recommend it to anyone who wanted a midwife led birth.

Mrscog Tue 26-May-15 21:00:30

I had dc2 in a birthing centre, unfortunately I arrived in transition and DS was born 15 mins later so it didn't really contribute to my experience!! What was nice was having my own room where we stayed until discharge, and the fact that the midwives were very pro active birth - I got stuck on my back by accident (don't ask) and I saud I couldn't move but I wanted to be on all fours and somehow they managed to heave me over. This request with DC1 in a normal hospital setting was ignored and discouraged. Would definitely use again if I had dc3, but I would not leave it as long to go!!

Bluepetra Tue 26-May-15 21:10:48

Thanks for replies. Very interesting, I'm definitely going to go and visit my local centre.

LemonYellowSun Tue 26-May-15 21:16:44

After an epidural for my first I was really happy when the hospital built a birth centre. It was perfect to be honest. Less stress but with assurance of doctors there next door if required. Great midwife led pool birth and home within a few hours. Would definitely recommend.

Bluepetra Tue 26-May-15 21:26:28

Sounds great, if all goes well. Although I can't have pethidine and the gas and air make me feel nauseous. So it really would be drug free, don't know if I'll end up caving in for an epidural.

Levismum Wed 27-May-15 10:55:23

I've had 3 dc in hospital. 3 dc in birth centres.

Personally i prefer the birth centre's.
Keep an open mind. Look into your local one. Ultimately it's personal choice!

Good luck.

Bluepetra Wed 27-May-15 10:58:23


SnozzberryPie Wed 27-May-15 11:10:47

If it is in the same building as the hospital then I'd definitely go for it. You can always transfer if you need to.

Our nearest one is half an hour away, in the opposite direction to the hospital. I can't see much point in that so will hopefully have a homebirth instead.

Bluepetra Wed 27-May-15 12:53:15

I live a good 40 mins away from the centre as there isn't one closer. Do you think it's too far ?

milliemanzi Wed 27-May-15 13:22:55

I'm hoping to have my first in my local birthing centre, it looks amazing! I like the idea of being in water. I know you have to have a "perfect" pregnancy though so I know it's not a dead cert but fingers crossed! It's great that they're putting more money into these types of centre.

SnozzberryPie Wed 27-May-15 13:26:12

It was transfer time to the hospital which worried me - it seemed silly to go somewhere to go birth which was further from emergency treatment than my home! If the unit is attached to the hospital this isn't a problem.

I'd only worry if your last labour was fast and you might not have time to get there.

How far into labour do you have to be when you are admitted? The drive might be quite uncomfortable when you are having contractions. Is there another hospital closer?

Ava50x Wed 27-May-15 14:36:56

My hospital has a birthing suite attached to the labour ward and I'm really hoping to be able to use it. Thanks for bringing up the topic- i'll be watching the thread!

Bluepetra Wed 27-May-15 15:01:09

There's a hospital here, ten mins away but I don't want to use this hospital, they don't have a birthing centre here either. Lots to think about, but very much like the idea of the centres.

SnozzberryPie Wed 27-May-15 15:33:53

I think if you have longish labours and the birthing centre would admit you quite early on then I'd go for it. If your labours are fast then it might not be worth the discomfort of a long drive to the birthing centre if you're only going to be there for an hour or two.

Your other option would be a homebirth, with the risk of transferring into the closest hospital if there were any complications.

Bluepetra Wed 27-May-15 15:36:38

I don't fancy a home birth at all, would rather be in hospital than at home. I've had one child already and that labour was 14 hours, but who knows how long this second one will be. My consultant told me that second labours are usually a third of your previous one... Hope he's right.

SnozzberryPie Wed 27-May-15 15:51:37

I hope so too - my first one was three days...

Bluepetra Wed 27-May-15 15:52:42


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