Considering water birth?
Many women enjoy the comfort and relief water immersion brings to them in labor. This is just one of the many reasons that water birth tub rental is included in the home birth package at Heirloom Midwifery PLLC. Water birth is a convenient, accessible and useful tool to have around, even if you’re undecided about delivering the baby in the water. The midwives will bring the tub to you at your 37 week home visit so it will be there when the time comes. She will assist in getting the tub inflated, set up and filled with warm water prior to your wanting to get in. After the birth, she and her team will empty it and put it away, sanitized, all while you snuggle and bond with your new baby in your bed.
Benefits of water birth include:
- An opportunity for deeper relaxation, mentally and physically. Many women are able to let go of tense muscles and intense thoughts when submerged in the warm water. Some women even sleep in the tub while resting their heads on the inflated edge.
- An increased ability to move around and change positions in the tub as the water provides buoyancy, allowing the body to be light and mobile. Women can be on hands and knees, kneeling, lunging, squatting or lying back in the tub.
- A decrease in blood pressure, which can improve circulation and increase oxygenation in the baby.
- Increased support and circulation to the perineal tissues which improves the likelihood of an intact perineum.
The benefits of water birth are numerous. I’ve seen women who thought they couldn’t go any further in labor get into the tub and regain their strength and composure. I’ve seen women sleep in the tub when they’ve not been able to rest in any other position. I’ve seen women be able to maintain a position for the delivery which enabled them to catch their own baby in the tub.
Water birth tubs can be a safe, useful addition to the labor aid tool kit. Water immersion and hydrotherapy can soothe you and bring you comfort in labor when nothing else can. I recommend planning to set up the birthing tub when your labor begins so that it’s ready and waiting if you should decide you want to give it a try. Many women get in and out of the tub many times throughout their labor, sometimes deciding to deliver out of the tub ultimately. All of them however, would say water immersion helped them immensely at some point in their labor.
Mandy is certified in water birth by Waterbirth International. She uses the Birth Pool In a Box Eco Mini.