A birth at home is one that is unmedicated, at the mother’s own pace, and in an atmosphere that is comfortable for her. This is a real dream for some women, and one that can easily become a reality with the assistance of a skilled midwife.
However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind because giving birth at home is not an option for every pregnant woman. We go over the benefits, but also the potential drawbacks, and provide some useful advice on how to get ready.
The most important information at a glance
What is a home birth?
An ideal candidate for a home birth is one who is self-assured, free-spirited, and independent, as well as one who is at ease and secure in their own environment. It is the best option for pregnant women who wish to focus their attention solely on their midwife during the labor and delivery process.
These ladies feel more secure in their own homes, with their families and friends surrounding them. One of the most significant benefits of having a home birth is that the mother can get uninterrupted care from a single midwife throughout the whole labor and delivery process. In addition, the expectant mother and the midwife have plenty of time to get to know each other before the baby is born, which allows them to form a trusting relationship.
Together with the midwife, the woman who is pregnant has the ability to decide how the labor and delivery process will proceed. Because of the peaceful and intimate setting, which assists in relaxation, the discomfort associated with childbirth is, at best, experienced as being less intense.
All of these factors have the potential to have a favorable impact on the delivery process. An additional benefit for many women during labor is the ability to select a comfortable birthing position or the freedom to choose between several positions.
When a woman gives birth at home, her family and friends are always present, and she does not have to wait until after the delivery to be reunited with her newborn child, as is typically the case at a medical facility. The beginnings of a relationship with one’s mother and father might begin soon after birth. If you already have another toddler, that child can, for instance, doze off quietly in the room next door or even be present when the new baby is delivered if you choose to do so.
When is a home birth possible?
When you go in for your checkups, both the doctor and the midwife will perform meticulous evaluations to determine whether or not it will be safe for you to give birth at home. Because this is a process that continues throughout the pregnancy, the location of the delivery can shift up until the moment it is too late.
The number of checkups that are covered by the health insurance ranges between 12 and 13. Both the midwife and the physician can share in this responsibility. However, only the doctor can perform ultrasound imaging, as well as some tests, such as laboratory checks for toxoplasmosis or gestational diabetes. Other tests can only be done by the doctor.
If at all feasible, pregnant women should not miss any of their checkups. They are essential in order to discover any potential difficulties in the course of the pregnancy at an early stage when they may still be treatable. If there are no or just extremely minor medical risks associated with giving birth at home, there is nothing wrong with doing so. 1 By the way, the success rate of planned home births is significantly higher than 80 percent.
It is not possible to give birth at the comfort of one’s own home for a variety of reasons, including the following:
- It has been determined that the mother’s blood group and the child’s blood group cannot be compatible.
- The diabetic pregnant woman need insulin shots due to the condition.
- The mother is carrying multiple babies in her womb at the same time.
In the event of particular health concerns, a doctor will make an individual determination regarding whether or not a home delivery is feasible. This encompasses…
- a pelvic irregularity present in the mother.
- Children that are on the larger side in comparison to the length of the birth canal.
- overstaying the allotted amount of time by more than a week.
- a posture of the child known as breech.
These are the standards that every independent midwife must meet in order to be eligible to submit a claim to the patient’s health insurance provider for the home birth.
The majority of the expenses associated with giving birth at home are covered by health insurance for those who are covered by statutory health insurance. In the first place, this pertains to the act of giving birth itself. There are several health insurance providers that will pay for what is commonly referred to as a “on-call midwife.”
The on-call service ensures that the midwife is always available to the expectant lady beginning three weeks before to the anticipated delivery date and continuing for up to two weeks following that date. Information regarding the precise terms and conditions can be obtained from the health insurance company.
In general, women who get pregnant should begin the search for an appropriate midwife as soon as humanly possible. If you are planning on giving birth at home, the same advice should be followed. Perhaps even more urgently, considering that it is even more challenging to locate home birth midwives than it is to locate prenatal and postnatal ones.
Because of the significant amount of time and money required from a freelance midwife due to on-call services and insurance, very few midwives actually provide home delivery services at all. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to get started on the search as soon as possible once the gynecologist has verified the pregnancy, but not before the 12th week of pregnancy at the absolute latest.
Because of how important expertise is to the overall safety of a home birth, you should be sure that the midwife you choose to trust has many years of professional experience under her belt.
There is also assistance available via the internet, midwife offices, and birth centers. In the first stage of the process, the midwife will want the following pieces of information: the pregnant woman’s place of residence as well as the estimated date of delivery. A word of advice: Information such as prior illnesses and the course of previous pregnancies are both crucial for the midwife to consider.
In addition to having a skilled midwife present during the birth, there are a few more precautions that expectant parents can take to ensure a happy and safe experience giving birth at home, including the following:
- The class for the preparation of birth: Not only may future parents learn a great deal about the labor and delivery process as well as how to properly care for their infants in this setting. In addition, ladies are instructed in various breathing and relaxation techniques. A class of this nature might help parents feel less anxious about the delivery of their child. The best part is that the woman’s health insurance will cover the expenditures associated with the pregnancy, either in full or in part. At least some of the expenses associated with the partner are typically paid for, in whole or in part, by the partner’s health insurance provider.
- Dextrose, snacks, and other liquid refreshments
- Pezzi ball or birth stool (bring the midwife along), whichever you like.
- If the expectant woman wants to give birth in water, she should bring the midwife to the birth pool with her. When giving birth in water, many women report that the pains of labor are more manageable. This method of childbirth can also take place during a birth that takes place outside of a medical facility. You can order a birthing pool on the internet or borrow one from somewhere, like a midwife’s office, if you want to have your baby in the water.
- Together with the midwife, you should select and make preparations for the birthing room in the apartment. It ought to provide a sufficient amount of freedom of movement for everyone concerned.
- On the day of delivery, raise the temperature of the room to around 24 degrees so that the expectant mother can walk around naked without fear of becoming chilled.
- To prevent blood and amniotic fluid from getting on the mattress, cover it with painter’s tape or a waterproof pad. Also cover the area around the mattress. Cover it with a bed cover or several towels that can be washed.
- Towels, washcloths, and even kitchen roll are included.
- Table for the midwife’s implements and supplies
- bulb that is both adjustable and bright, as well as a flashlight that is adequately illuminated (as a backup in case of a power failure)
- Lighting to set the scene, music, aromatic candles, massage oil, and refreshing towels are also included.
- space designated for changing diapers as well as the essential infant gear
- nursing pads
- Pads and large underwear for the time during labor and delivery
- Registration at a convenient clinic of your choice located nearby: In the event of a crisis, the information pertaining to the woman who is pregnant ought to be accessible there.
- bag for the hospital, packed in case you need to be sent there.
- Make a list of the phone numbers for the midwife, hospital, ambulance service, taxi service, and babysitter.
- Schedule an appointment with the pediatrician for the U2 exam between the fourth and tenth day after the birth of the child.
When the mother experiences the first signs of labor, such as contractions that occur regularly or the rupture of the amniotic sac, the midwife is immediately notified. First-time babies typically spend between eight and ten hours in what is known as the “opening phase,” which is characterized by the gradual opening of the cervix and the insertion of the head into the pelvis.
Some pregnant women express a desire to have the assistance of the midwife beginning with the very first contractions of labor. Another consideration is that it is not necessary for the midwife to arrive immediately. Simply because the spouse themselves can provide sufficient support in the beginning. When the contractions are spaced five minutes apart at most, the midwife should arrive at the earliest possible opportunity.
During the labor and delivery process, the midwife is present to provide emotional support and professional assistance to the lady who is giving birth. To provide comfort to the expecting mother, some midwives massage the area around the sacrum. Someone else offers the lady words of encouragement and inspiration.
Dependent upon the requirements of the pregnant mother. During this time, the woman should focus on tuning into her body and allowing it to do the work. If she does this, she will naturally move into the optimal position for giving birth. As the contraction progresses, some people roll over onto their bellies.
Others, on the other hand, favor lying on their side, while others discover that it is simpler for them to stand up. It is the responsibility of the midwife to correct the mother if she assumes an improper posture or places her head in an unpleasant position throughout the labor process. In addition to this, the midwife makes certain that the infant passes through the perineum in a measured and cautious manner in order to protect the mother from potential harm.
When the baby is born, the midwife is the one who takes care of it. The midwife will examine the placenta for completeness as soon as the placenta has been delivered and detached from the uterine wall. She is also able to treat small injuries that occur during birth and stitch up superficial wounds.
After the child is born, she performs a physical examination on the newborn and records the results in the mother-child passport. This is what is known as the U1. Additionally, the midwife will remain for around three hours after the delivery to check for any signs of bleeding and to ensure that both the mother and the newborn are doing well.
The availability of restricted medical care and the potential for lost time in the event that a transfer to a hospital is required are two of the disadvantages of giving birth at home. A transfer plan is something that the midwife will discuss with the parents prior to the birth of the baby.
This also includes things like registering ahead of time at the maternity clinic that is closest to your home so that everything can be prepared there in the event of an unexpected emergency. In the event that issues arise during a home delivery that put the mother or the child in danger, any sensible midwife will call off the birth and make arrangements for the transfer to a hospital. The following circumstances have the potential to bring this about:
- if it has been several hours since the membranes ruptured and you have not experienced any contractions.
- Labor that is halted while the woman is at the dilatation or ejection phase.
- During the process of giving birth, the mother falls unwell or develops a fever.
- The mother is either too worn out or she expresses a desire to get an epidural.
- The mother is losing a significant amount of blood.
- It is necessary to use forceps, a suction cup, or undergo a caesarean section.
- A severe tear was found in the mother’s perineum.
- There is either no dissolution of the placenta or merely a partial dissolution.
- The head is not properly positioned in relation to the pelvis.
- Alteration in the child’s heart sounds that is significant.
- The newborn is experiencing difficulties adjusting to their new environment, may have a medical ailment, or may have a general condition that could be life-threatening.
In the postpartum bed, the mother can recuperate after the labor and delivery, as well as bond with her new baby. But in addition to this roller coaster of feelings, there are a lot of questions that run through the minds of new parents. Additionally, this is a period when attention should be paid to the well-being of both the mother and the kid. Because of this, the family will continue to have a midwife present during the labor and delivery of the baby.
This is typically taken care of by the midwife who was present during the home birth as well. She is permitted to come for follow-up care once a week, if necessary, up until the eighth week of the kid’s life, but she must do so every day for the first ten days after the child is born (however, this can vary from health insurance company to health insurance company).
She is accessible to answer any and all questions pertaining to the newborn, instructs the parents on all aspects of baby care, and monitors the child’s weight gain as well as the healing of the navel. Some midwives have completed additional coursework to become certified as breastfeeding consultants, and these professionals are prepared to answer any questions you might have regarding breastfeeding. As long as the moms are typically breastfeeding their infants, the midwife is able to make up to four further visits at the mother’s request up until the ninth month.
In the course of providing aftercare, the midwife will also look after the mother’s health by performing tasks such as checking the involution of the uterus, measuring blood pressure, resolving various physical concerns, and providing guidance regarding baby blues. Because she has spent so much time with the woman during the pregnancy and delivery, the midwife who attended the home birth is typically the first person to recognize the signs of postpartum depression.
After that, she can seek help from psychiatrists and psychologists. A midwife will also be present to bolster the parents’ confidence and support them as they adjust to their new position as caregivers. In addition, every pregnant woman is eligible for two checkups at the gynecologist during the course of their pregnancy. One between the sixth and eighth week after the delivery, and the other in the first, only if the bleeding is too excessive or the resolution is not acceptable.
Midway through March of 2020, there was a significant uptick in interest in home births, which had been a very unpopular issue for many years. According to a research published in a medical publication on April 8, 2020, the reason for this is that many women wanted to avoid giving birth in a hospital out of fear of COVID-19. However, the preventative actions that were taken by a number of hospitals might also be somewhat responsible for this decision.
Since the spread of the Corona virus, some hospitals have stopped allowing any companions, including the expectant father, in the delivery room during labor and delivery. And even after the baby has been delivered, visitors are only permitted in the maternity unit once every 24 hours.
The rule states that only immediate family members, spouses, life partners, partners in a non-marital partnership, relatives who are related to the patient in a direct line, siblings, and other permanent persons are permitted to visit.
The state and the specific hospital might each have their own set of restrictions regarding visitors. A home birth is not something that should ever be planned in a rush, regardless of how remarkable the circumstances may be at the moment.
Now is the time to do thorough research, compile a list of advantages and disadvantages, and come to a conclusion after giving it careful thought. If the pregnant lady is known to have COVID-19 or there is a reasonable suspicion that she has, then the delivery should not take place at home.