Home water birth is such a special way to give birth! Congratulations! You’ve researched, you’ve attended all the classes to prepare yourself. The midwife and doula have been hired. Now you’re wondering how you prepare your home for a water birth?
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Pool or Bath Tub?
I highly recommend you pick a pool for your home water birth to set up in the largest room of the house, usually the living room. If you have a garden tub; that MIGHT work but it would be awfully difficult for your midwife, birth partner and doula to all attend to you at the same time. To make it easier for all involved you may want to consider ordering a nice birthing pool, like this one, or this one, or this one. It may also be a help to get an air pump!
Decide where to set up the pool
Definitely choose the largest room in the house for your home water birth. There should be plenty of room around your pool for your midwife, doula or birth partner to attend to your needs during your home water birth. Try to move as much furniture as you can to another room or the garage if you have one, but leave somewhere for your birth attendants to sit and have a rest. You want to make sure there’s plenty of room for you to get out or rearrange if needed. The birthing pool should be set up as close to the bedroom (and definitely a bathroom) as possible so it is easy to transition to the pool when contractions really start to get hard. You want to save the pain relieving effects of the water until you absolutely need it!
When should you set up the pool
If labor starts suddenly; inflate and fill the pool with warm water as soon as labor starts! Don’t delay!
If you’re starting to get contractions but they’re far apart or you’re close to your due date go ahead and inflate the pool but don’t fill it until labor really starts.
I suggest using a thermometer to check the water and make sure it’s not too hot! The water should be between 92-100° F or 32-38° C.
Have your home cleaned
Don’t attempt to do this if you’re nearing the end of your pregnancy. Hire someone to deep clean your home. If you can’t afford to hire someone ask your church or community for help. Offer pizza or something as an incentive and make it a HUGE party! People love to help families prepare for new babies, usually. If you truly have no support call me, no matter what state you’re in, I will do my best to find someone to come lend a hand.
Set up the “birth basket”
For a successful home water birth have everything you need nearby. Your midwife should bring all of the supplies she needs but be sure to ask her if there’s anything you should have on standby
Things to include in the birth basket:
- Towels and Blankets
- TENS unit
- Affirmation Cards
Prepare the Car
Just in case of emergency, go ahead and pack a hospital bag and have the car seat and everything ready. Expect the best but prepare for the worst.
I pray that these tips are helpful for you as you prepare for your home water birth. Did I miss anything? Add it in the comments below!
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