After literally holding her close to your heart for months, you can’t wait to see your new bundle of joy. But the question that looms is this: Should you give birth at the hospital, or should you try a home birth?
Having a home birth is an option that many women decide to take, as it offers several benefits over hospital births. However, home births aren’t for every woman.
Here’s a rundown of what you need to know about home births before you decide to have one.
Let’s get started!
Not Everyone Can Handle Home Births
In the past, all women gave birth at home. However, many of these women passed away during labor or thereafter due to complications.
Fortunately, today, we can monitor potential health problems in expectant mothers, such as high blood pressure and diabetes. As a result, the mortality rate is much lower among birthing women now than it was in the past.
Still, not every woman is completely healthy. Therefore, it’s critical that you’re in relatively good health and are under a physician’s or skilled midwife’s care before proceeding with a home birth.
The Birthing Process Can Be Messy
During the home birth process, you will be exposed to much more bodily fluid than you would be in the hospital setting. Can you handle that?
Nurses and doctors during hospital births quickly toss out the pads you might bleed on. They also whisk away your placenta quickly so that you don’t see it.
Don’t expect this during a home birth.
At home, you’ll see a lot of blood in your birthing pool, along with other “floaties” coming from your body. It’s important that you realize this and are comfortable with this reality before jumping on the home-birth bandwagon.
You’re in Control
The benefit of the home birth process is that you can basically call the shots.
For instance, you can hold onto your new bundle for a while, rather than having to give her up almost immediately for tests.
On top of that, you don’t have to use a wheelchair to go from one room to another.
Another plus? You may feed your baby whenever and however you wish without a healthcare professional telling you how to do it.
Of course, you must be comfortable with making these big decisions on your own — with your midwife guiding you along the way — for the home birth experience to be successful.
If you’d rather have a doctor call these shots for you, then a hospital birth would is the best option.
You Can Enjoy More Independence Sooner
A major benefit of having a home birth is that once everything has been cleaned up, your midwife will leave you and your baby alone to enjoy some privacy.
Try getting that in the hospital setting.
In the hospital, you can expect constant interruptions from nurses and doctors during the first 24 hours following your baby’s birth. Unfortunately, this can detract from the time you spend with your baby bundle.
The good thing about having a home birth is that even though your midwife will leave you following the birth, you can still get in touch with her if you have questions and for checkups.
You Might Still Have to Go to the Hospital, Though
So, you’ve decided to have a home birth. Congratulations! But don’t be surprised if you still have to step foot in the hospital if things go awry.
Let’s say you’ve been in labor for over 30 hours. Your midwife may intervene by taking you to the hospital. In no time, you may receive the sleep and epidural you need to endure labor, and you can finally meet your healthy baby.
Remember that just as life is unpredictable, what happens during the birthing process is sometimes outside of your control. Stay open minded both for your sake and for your child’s sake.
In addition to preparing mentally and emotionally for a birth process, you need to make a lot of practical preparations, too.
This includes, of course, finding the right midwife and purchasing your birth kit. Also, if you’d like to sit in a water bath while giving birth, you’ll need to rent a birthing pool.
Furthermore, you’ll need to find out what you need to do in your state to file your child’s birth with the Social Security Administration and your county. In the hospital setting, the hospital staff will do this for you. At home, you may have to do this on your own if your midwife doesn’t do it for you.
In other words, you’ll need to do much more than simply pack a suitcase as you would with a hospital birth.
On the flip side, some medical insurance companies will gladly cover the costs of your birthing supplies. And even if you don’t have insurance, home births can cost a third of what hospital births do.
The Home Birthing Process is Safe and Comfortable
If you’re feeling apprehensive about going through the home birth process, don’t be. Your midwife will not jeopardize your or your baby’s safety.
In fact, a midwife who is certified and has helped with numerous home births is sometimes even more experienced than OB doctors are when it comes to assisting with births.
In addition, the fact that you’ll be in your home may offer some consolation to you. You can use your own bathroom and sleep in your own comfortable bed.
And the best part? No hospital food.
All in all, giving birth at home means you can enjoy the privacy and beautiful memories that come with it.
How We Can Help
We offer a wide range of tips and advice on everything related to conception, pregnancy, and childbirth.
For instance, we provide a week-by-week glimpse at what to expect while you’re expecting. We also offer detailed nutrition advice for pregnant women.
Get in touch with us to find out more about home births versus hospital births so that you can choose the right option for you.