6 Super Easy steps to take to get a positive birth.
- January 2, 2020
- Vicky Barbour-Andrews
- 0 Comment
6 Super Easy steps towards a positive birth
Giving birth can be a hell of a ride, and sometimes crappy curve balls can be launched at you on what is the biggest day in your life. By making sure you are prepared and ready for those curve balls can make a huge difference to how you feel coming out of giving birth.
No one can predict what will happen on the day, but there are many things you can do to make sure that you and your birth partner are as ready as you can be.
Making sure that you are ready to handle those curve balls, can make a HUGE difference to how you feel after giving birth.
So here’s my 6 super easy steps to help prepare you for a positive birth.
1) Spend time building a connection to your baby.
Spend time each day talking to your bump, if you like a good old sing song sing to them and you can even play them music. Research suggests that by 22 weeks your baby will be able to hear low level sounds from outside the womb. As the baby continues to grow inside you their hearing will continue to develop and they will be able to distinguish between different sounds.
Research also suggests that the most vital time for development for hearing is from 25 weeks of pregnancy, and by late pregnancy the baby can distinguish between different voices.
Because of the last bit of the above point, ask your partner to also read and talk to the baby, the baby can distinguish between your voice and your birth partners voice and now is an amazing time for them to also build a strong bond with the baby.
Quite often partners think they can’t build a bond with their baby until they are born but actually this research proves otherwise.
2) Take time out for your own self care
Take time out for you, it doesn’t have to be a huge amount of time but it is important to take an hour or two out of our crazy busy schedules.
There are many things you can do, some of which I have listed below.
*Find a prenatal exercise class near to you, there are many to choose between so have a search around on the internet to find the right class in the right area for you.
*Book yourself in for a pregnancy massage. You don’t have to tootle yourself off to a posh expensive spa (Unless you want to!) there are many great pregnancy massage therapists who can massage your aches and pains away for you.
*Attend a Pregnancy Relaxation class. these can be brilliant for not only meeting other pregnant mothers in your area but also for spending the time to learn some amazing breathing techniques for you to use during birth. Pregnancy relaxation classes also have the time to discuss different topics each week all relating to birth which can help put any concerns you have to bed.
3) Prepare your birth partner
Now then this is a biggie. There are so many ways that your birth partner can support you on the day. In the time that I have been teaching hypnobirthing classes, without fail the birth partner always loves the class that is all about them and how they can be of most use on the day.
Without spending the time discussing how you can work as a team on the day, they won’t know how to support you. And thats when they end up retreating to the chair in the corner of the room as they genuinely have no idea what to do, and quite often fear making things worse.
So here are some quick things that are important for you to discuss to make a start on prepping the birth partner to be a great support on the big day.
– Talk to your birth partner about the type of birth you want.
– Discuss and research the options available to you (or your hypnobirthing teacher will take you through all this)
– Give your birth partner jobs to do during labour. (How you like to be massaged, where they can and cannot touch you, maintaining oxytocin levels (vital to keep your labour chugging along nicely), they need to play DJ for the day and make sure your playlist, music is playing, are they to be the bridge between you and your medical team? Lots of things for them to be focussing on, making sure you stay calm and relaxed, gentle reassurance the list goes on for quite a bit but will stop there)
4) Get yourself ready for birth
Obviously the first one here is going to be….
– Attend an independent Antenatal course (hypnobirthing course). There are so many things that us birth workers are able to tell you that NHS workers wont/Can’t. Every time I teach a hypnobirthing course the couple always sit there with their jaws on the floor and just keep repeatedly saying why does this not get taught as standard. There are so many things to be aware of, so many things that you need to know that just aren’t out there in the general public as standard knowledge.
Booking in with an Independent antenatal course will open your eyes to options and facts and stats surrounding birth.
– Attend a breastfeeding course. Breastfeeding is billed as the most natural thing in the world, but by Jesus can it be one of the trickiest things to get the hang of. If you don’t attend a breastfeeding course at least have a list of all the breastfeeding and lactation consultants in your area to hand so that you can quickly get the help and support you need.
– Plan what the big day looks like. Do you have other kids to take into account? Who will look after them if you go into labour during the day or night, are school aware of someone else picking them up.dropping them off. If your partner is at work how long is their journey home, at what point will you call them or your midwife. Get the day planned out so that you aren’t worrying about anything on the day. For me I love a list so I had lists everywhere and they were emailed out to everyone involved so that we were all signing off the same hymn sheet.
Also dont forget your pets, who is looking after them. What happens if you need to stay in hospital for a bit longer than planned? Is someone going to look after them for the first week or so while you adjust to having a baby?
5) Pack your bag
There are many lists on the internet about what to pack into your hospital bag, here are a few things that may not be on those lists.
– Blankets or Pillows from home, it can be hugely conforting to have these things with you not he day to make you feel at home and cosier.
-Birth plan and your birth notes. Make multiple copies of your birth plan and hand them out to anything and everyone who walks through the door.
– Photos from home that make you smile, this is another great oxytocin tip. Dont for get the blue tac so that you can stick them up on the wall and look at them whilst you are in labour.
– Also, stick some of your favourite affirmations up on the wall too. There are some amazing ones on the internet that you can download and print off.
– Stick up some battery operated fairy lights around the room (this is a job for the birth partner), it can turn the hospital room into a beautiful place to give birth.
– Snacks and drinks for everyone, don’t just pack snacks for yourself! Your birth partner will also need food and drink to keep them going. The last thing you want on the day is for them to either pass out or have to nip off down to the cafe to grab something to eat.
– Straws, I know these are quite controversial now so maybe use a drinks bottle that has a straw built into it. It just makes taking fluids in whilst in labour so much easier.
– Socks and Slippers. Your tootsies cam get quite cold when you are in labour, so take some nice fluffy socks and slippers in with you to make sure your feet don’t get cold.
– Oil diffuser. This is a great way to mask the smell of hospitals, use a certain scent in the run up to about that you love and then use this when in labour.
– Pack Jim Jams that are easy to breastfeed in. Anything that has buttons on the top is great, just make sure you can get your boob out of them easily.
– Most hospital rooms have speakers in them but I always suggest taking in a speaker with you just in case the one in the room isn’t working. For me not having any music would be a huge issue for me on the day.
-Chargers! Dont forget to pack your chargers for all your devices.
6) PLan your birth
Now, if you have booked an independent Antenatal course (Hypnobirthing) they will most likely take you through all your options so that you can decide what is important to you for the day.
I hear people say a lot that there’s no point in making a birth plan because it all goes out the window, but the beauty of planning for your birth is that by planning for it you are educating yourself in all the options, so that should something change you know what the other options are.
Your birth plan that you hand over to the medical professionals is your wish list of things that you would Like to happen, understand that it’s not a concrete document and that things can change.
Remember that creating your birth plan is more about educating yourself and working out what is important to you for the big day.
Most people don’t realise that you can say no to a lot of things, or that you can request a lot of things that aren’t standard practice. It’s important to spend the time going through these options and working out what is right for you and what isn’t.
It is important that your birth partner knows your birth plan inside out, it’s also important that they know and that you have discussed the reasons why you don’t want something to happen on the day, when you are in labour you dont want to be having that discussion with the medical professionals, thats the birth partners job as you just need to continue to focus on you and labouring your little baby.
I’ve loved writing this short blog for you but there is so so so much more you can do to help prepare you for your upcoming birth.
Feel free to email me or message me to find out how I can help you on your journey to becoming a parent.