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Preparing your birth plan

A birth plan is a simple list that tells your doctor, midwife and nurses about your preferences for your baby’s birth. Even if you don’t stick to your plan on the day, preparing a wish list for how you'd like things to go is good a way to think about different scenarios.

 

No-one ever said giving birth is easy – and that’s why it’s important to think about how you want the special day to go , before it happens. In the heat of the moment, it may be a struggle to make key decisions that will affect you and your baby significantly. Where, when, how and who are just some of the key questions you should have answers ready for.

 

Here’s some tips to make sure you have your perfect birth plan in place :

Pick your ideal setting 

 

  • Where would you like to give birth?
  • Would you like to have music playing?
  • Are you planning to use aromatherapy, water, hypno-birthing or other techniques?
  • Would you be ok with medical students observing your baby's birth?

Select the perfect team 

 

  • Who would you like to have with you during labour and delivery?
  • Is there anyone you'd prefer kept out of the room?

Plan for pain management

 

  • Is there any particular pain relief you’d like to use? For example, would you like access to medication or a birthing pool?
  • Is there any pain relief medication you’d prefer to avoid? For example, would you prefer not to be offered an epidural?

Know what to do in an emergency

 

  • Do you have strong feelings about the use of forceps or a ventouse?
  • What about if you’re offered an emergency Caesarean section?

Prepare for what comes after

 

  • Would you like someone special to cut your baby’s umbilical cord?
  • Would you like immediate skin-to-skin contact?
  • Are there any other specific ways you'd like to bond with your baby?
 

Once you've made a list of your preferences, share them with your care team, give a copy to your partner or the person who will be accompanying you at the birth, and keep a copy in your hospital bag. Do be prepared to be flexible. Childbirth is unpredictable, and most professionals will try to honour your birth-plan requests – as long as they're safe at that moment for you and your baby.

 

Please be aware that the information given in these articles is only intended as general advice and should in no way be taken as a substitute for professional medical advice. If you or your family or your child is suffering from symptoms or conditions which are severe or persistent or you need specific medical advice, please seek professional medical assistance. Philips AVENT cannot be held responsible for any damages that result from the use of the information provided on this website.

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