Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Preparing For Labor - Pregnancy

Giving birth can be scary for any women. As a mom over 35, you may have already dealt with high risk pregnancy care, and you may be aware of statistics indicating that older women and their babies often experience more complications during birth. Empower your self with information and focus on the positive to help clam your nerves, give your self the best birth experience possible.

Having to manage the uncertainties of birth is challenging for all women. Experiencing some degree of nervousness and even fear is normal. However, by facing your fears honestly, communicating with your birth attendant, and being prepared for the birth, you will be able to look ahead to this exciting event with confidence and relative tranquility.

Face Your Fears

As their due dates approach, many women begin to worry in particular about coping with pain and fatigue during labor.

Coping With Pain

Giving birth to a baby does involve pain. For some women, this is one of the scariest aspects of delivery. However, the degree of pain you experience can be controlled in several ways. Ask your care provider about the options available to you. Getting all the facts and understanding the different types of pain relief will help you feel more in control as you plan your birth.

Dealing With Exhaustion

Mature morns may be more likely to become exhausted during labor. Maintaining your energy is important, especially for pushing. If you are exhausted at the end of labor, your care provider may be more likely to recommend forceps or vacuum at delivery, increasing your risks. To help make sure that you begin labor with good physical reserves, rest as much as possible in the weeks before your due date and try snacking throughout the day so that you will not be hungry, no matter when labor sets in.

Be Prepared

Full term, healthy babies can arrive 3 weeks early. Having your nursery ready in plenty of time will reduce stress in case your baby comes before your due date. If time is at a premium, focus on the most essential nursery items first - your baby will need a place to sleep, diapers, wipes, and basic items of clothing. Everything else can be bought later. Pack your birthing bag several weeks ahead of your due date. Your care provider may help you supplement our basic list with specific things he or she recommends. If you already have older children, don't forget to make arrangements in advance for their care when you go into labor. When serious contractions start, you'll feel more in control if you can easily contact members of your birthing team. Have a list of phone numbers ready, including those of your partner, care provider, doula, and if necessary the person driving you to the hospital or caring for your older children.

Your Support Team

Organizing good support for your self can make a big difference, both emotionally and physically. There may be various people with you during your labor, each with his or her own supportive role.

Your partner or support person

The main role of your partner or support person will be to help you remain as comfortable as possible during labor. For example, he or she can hold your hand and rub your back, bring you a drink, or a fresh wash cloth to cool your forehead.

Your doula A doula is an experienced birth attendant. Research suggests that having a doula can help you manage your labour pain and may reduce your chances of a cesarean delivery. While a doula is not a doctor and will not make decisions with respect to your medical care, she is an effective advocate who will be able to recommend various labor positions. Her support can also help to prevent exhaustion and manage your labor pain. If you want a doula for your labor, finding a compatible and qualified person may take some advance planning.

Your labor nurse

Your labor nurse will help manage your labor and keep you informed about your progress through labor. She will closely watch you and your baby to make sure that you are both doing well medically. If you do not have a doula, your labor nurse will help you labor and teach you how to push when the time comes.

Your care provider

Depending on the type of care provider you have chosen, he or she mayor may not stay with you for much of the labor process. Your care provider will monitor the progress of your labor and explain any interventions that may be needed to keep you on track. Your care provider will be there for your delivery and will help guide you as you push.

Packing list For The Hospital

During your stay, the hospital should supply: infant formula, diapers, maxipads, towels, and other linens.

For your partner


Insurance documents

Small stash of cash


Credit card for emergencies


Optional but desirable Camera video equipment

Phone list of people to call

Cell phone or calling card

Tape or cd player

Massage lotion or oils


For You


Your birth plan

Maternity outfit to go home in

Toiletries and hairbrush

Hair tie for during labor

Sports bra to bind breasts if you won't be breastfeeding

Nursing bra if you are breastfeeding

Optional but desirable

Warm socks to wear while pushing

Popsicles or hard candy

Water bottle or sports drink

Music you have chosen for tape or cd player

Your own pillow

Lip balm

Nightgown pajamas robe for wearing after baby is born

Book on breastfeeding if you plan to breastfeed

For Baby

Before your baby goes home you will need a rear facing car seat, an outfit for him or her to wear home, and a baby blanket if cold.

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