Written by Suma rp
When you are expecting a baby, you have so many things going on in mind. You want to be ready with a plan to welcome your baby that helps you out after he/she is born. Creating a birth plan can actually help you stay prepared well ahead for your labor.
Be ready with your plan from the scratch. Let your healthcare professionals know about it. They will review it and guide better if there are any complications during pregnancy. Talk to the health care professional for suggestions and recommendations before you take admission for delivery.
In This Article
A birth plan is a plan you would want to happen during the time of delivery. You would have a plan in mind that you can share with your midwife who will better be able to guide you before you experience labor. When you have a midwife to help, there is a chance to ask as many questions and clear doubts about labor. The midwife taking care of you will be able to know you more.
A birth plan is important because it helps you be prepared for the upcoming labor and childbirth. It will allow you to concentrate on what is needed during the time of delivery. Also, if you have an uncomplicated pregnancy, there is a great chance of implementing your plan without any hampers. Creating a birth plan anticipating emergencies can also help you stay calm and composed during childbirth.
However, you are always open to creating a birth plan if you have scheduled a planned C-Section. The birth of a child is a unique experience for all mothers. Before delivery, you should be able to communicate your wishes to your healthcare professional. It makes you stay aware of all the options you have before creating a birth plan. Also, it makes the team know about your preferences.
Ideally, you should create a birth plan before delivery. If you have some specific conditions like gestational diabetes or pre-eclampsia then you should check with a doctor and see what factors to include in the plan.
Here are a few things you may want to consider before creating a birth plan
If this is your first pregnancy, creating a birth plan may require a lot of research and understanding. Here are a few aspects you may want to consider before creating a birth plan.
Write the names of those who you want to be with you for support. It may include your partner, obstetrician, a close family member, etc. If you do not like any person to be there during your labor you can freely write that too.
The birth plan should include where would you like to deliver your baby. There may be a choice in terms of the environment you want. Whether you want a place that is calm or plays some light music or meditative chants
Some women may follow a few instructions during childbirth like not moving too much, some prefer lying down or sitting. It is important to create a birth plan with all these in mind. You can choose any position for labor unless there is a suggestion from your obstetrician for specific conditions. You can write down the comfortable position you would like for delivery.
Include pain-relief options in your birth plan and let your healthcare providers know your wish. Whether you would like to go with a natural pain-relief option like massage or medicines. Make it clear in your birth plan. Learn about the pain-relief techniques that are available during labor. During labor, it is difficult to change your plan. For example, if you take medicines for pain relief, you cannot deliver them in water for at least 4 hours.
Write in the birth plan about your preferences for kangaroo care or skin-to-skin contact with your baby. If your baby or your condition is not stable after birth then the health care providers will support you in skin-to-skin contact with the baby. It increases emotional bonding increases babies’ weight, improves oxygen levels, helps in smooth breastfeeding as babies access their mother’s breast, etc.
Include in the birth plan the preferences for breastfeeding your baby. As it starts right after birth you should be clear about whether you want to breastfeed or not. While there are huge benefits of breastfeeding, you may choose not to breastfeed because of reasons like earlier experience, medication, or breast-related disease. You should also include in the plan how to breastfeed your baby.
Your partner can help you in many ways. So make it clear in the plan how your partner can support you during and after labor. A birth support partner is not always a father, it can be a friend, a sibling, a relative, a paid professional, a co-parent, etc. Supporting a mother physically and mentally is a big responsibility during and post labor. Talk to your birth support partner if he/she would be able to help you. If not, then you should search for some other partner.
You can include your expectation about the personal time you would want to spend with your baby after birth. Ensure to discuss this with your healthcare provider before including this in your birth plan.
Make your birth plan clear to the health care providers. Doctor’s or health care staff’s input is important as they will be able to guide you in your decisions and can help you alter your plan based on your health condition. You can incorporate it into the birth plan.
Be a little flexible while creating a birth plan. The plan may not go as you expected. Anytime it can change depending upon the situation during labor. There should be some room for flexibility. Be prepared for the uncertainties.
If you have a birth plan ready before your labor it will help you in many ways. You will be aware of what might happen during labor and be prepared to face the situations that come your way. Talking to your healthcare provider will guide you better in creating a birth plan.
A birth plan helps a mother to feel in control and assists maternity care providers to know about what is important to her. Delivery may not go as per plan but it is the way of knowing how a pregnant mother wants her labor and birth of a child to be.
Vaginal birth is the safest method but you should also research giving birth via C-section. Because of health conditions, you may have to go for planned cesarean delivery.
Suma is a passionate content writer with a strong keenness to understand the miracle of pregnancy, birth, and parenting. Suma has successfully transitioned into a full-time content writer and a key contributor at Being The Parent. She leverages on her experimental background in chemistry and experience in writing to come up with well-researched content that helps parents struggling to deal with various medical conditions of their children.Read more.
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