Labouring in water can make you feel more relaxed, and may also help with pain relief. Learn all about water birth to decide whether it’s the right option for you.
You may want to consider how you are going to actually make use of the pool. Do you just simply want to use it as a pain killer during labour? Or do you actually want to give birth in the water as well? It could be useful to talk it through with your midwife first, though there is no wrong answer, and both uses are perfectly adequate.
There are still debates going on around the world as to when the best time to enter the birthing pool mat be. If you’re having a home birth, you can get in the pool when you want to. Early contractions can last a while, and they can really be a strain on your back as well.
The warm water will ease your achy back, and help you to loosen up. It will also help you prepare and save your energy for the big push too. If your contractions slow, then feel free to come and go from the pool as you please.
Talk about your wishes with everyone involved before your labour starts, such as who you want in the room, or the birthing pool, with you when labour starts. Even if your partner does not get into the pool, just having a special person close by to support you will be greatly comforting.
You may find a blow up or waterproof pillow helpful for resting on as well for your arms. Floats may also be handy for supporting you.
You can also try these positions to see which is most comfortable for you too:
• Squatting, grasping both sides of the birthing pool.
• Resting on your side with your head on a pillow to the side of the pool.
• Floating on your back with your hands grasping the sides of the pool and your head supported with a pillow. This really takes the weight off.
• Floating the other way around your belly with your head turned to breathe, supported with a pillow. This may be the first time you’ve rested on your tummy for months for obvious reasons.
• If your birth partner is in the pool with you, put your back against them for both physical and emotional support.