I have written a few times about water births and the benefits of having a baby in a tub. The whole thing intrigues me, it’s just not an option in North American hospitals.
They will allow you to relax in the pool before the birth, but the baby has to be born outside the water.
It is however, an option in the UK and they are seeing a urge in women who are requesting to deliver this way.
UK hospital’s are delivering hundreds of water babies as new NHS guidelines offer mothers greater control over how they give birth.
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) this week issued guidance including a recommendation that women should have the opportunity for water births.This method is proving increasingly popular with expectant mothers as 10% of all births dealt with by the hospital’s staff are water births or home births, compared with a national average of 2%.
Midwife and delivery suite co-ordinator Bronwen Boddy said the guidelines signal a new era for mums-to-be who wish to have minimal intervention.
“It is fantastic that these guidelines are supporting the ‘normality’ as this is what midwives all across the country want to do.
“We have usually implemented change in advance of the guidelines. We have had lots of initiatives here ahead of the Government announcement.”
Water therapy has featured in the guidance as it encourages relaxation and less intervention under midwife-led care.
Hospitals are urged to make sure they have pools – at least three pools for 1,000 births a year is seen as adequate provision.
Demand is increasing at the South Tyneside trust. It completed a £1.1m upgrade of its delivery suite in 2003 which included a birthing pool. The trust also enables women to have a water birth at home.
With a water birth, only half need pain relief as the warm water has a relaxing and soothing effect.
It has also been widely reported that Charlotte Church purchased a birthing pool to deliver her baby Ruby in. No details were given about the baby’s birth except that it occurred in her farmhouse.
I think that expectant moms are more open to different birthing options now more than ever.
If are interested in learning more about water births, you should contact a midwife in your area.