Location and Facilities

Where to give birth

You will have a choice about where to have your baby. Your midwife or doctor will be able to tell you what services are available locally and advise you on any issues to do with your health or pregnancy that may affect your choice.

My comments on where I would like to give birth and why:

Birthing equipment

You may find that items such as wall bars, mats or beanbags help you to change position and remain comfortable during labour. If you're giving birth in a maternity unit, your midwife will be able to tell you if specific items are normally available. However, you may need or prefer to provide some equipment yourself.

My comments on birthing equipment and whether I will provide it:

Special facilities

Some units may offer you special facilities such as a birthing pool. Some have special rooms called LDRP rooms (labour, delivery, recovery, postnatal rooms) where you stay in the same room until you leave the hospital, although availability is limited. Your midwife will be able to tell you what's available.

My comments on any special facilities I would like to use:

Companions

Companions

Having a companion you can 'lean on' and who can support you during your labour can be helpful. It has been shown to reduce the need for pain relief.

My birth partner companion is:

Companions during a forceps or vacuum delivery

A forceps delivery is where forceps are placed around the baby's head to pull him or her gently from the birth canal. Vacuum delivery, sometimes called ventouse, is when the baby is guided out using a cap fitted to its head by suction.

Companions during a caesarean section

A caesarean section is when the baby is delivered by cutting through the abdomen and into the womb. This will only be performed when it is necessary, but there are situations where this is the safest option for either you or your baby. If your caesarean section is carried out under local anaesthetic and you are awake, your partner or companion may sit with you.

During Labour

Monitoring during labour

Every baby is monitored throughout labour to make sure that it is not in distress. There are different ways of monitoring the baby's heartbeat.

My comments on monitoring my baby during labour:

Keeping active during labour

Keep active for as long as you feel comfortable. This helps the progress of the birth. Keeping active doesn't mean doing anything strenuous, just moving around normally.

My comments on moving around during labour:

Positions for labour and birth

Find the positions you prefer and which will make labour easier for you. Try out various positions at antenatal class or at home to find out which are the most comfortable for you. You can choose as many positions as you want and vary them throughout your labour

Pain relief options

There are many different pain relief options. Some women use a combination of methods. You may find that you want more pain relief than you had planned, or that more effective pain relief may be advised to assist with delivery. You can use a number of different methods at different times.

My preferences for pain relief:

Having an episiotomy

An episiotomy is a cut in the perineum (the area between the vagina and anus). This may be necessary if the perineum won't stretch enough and may tear, or if the baby is short of oxygen and needs to be delivered quickly.

My feelings about the possible need for an episiotomy:

After Baby is Born

Skin-to-skin contact with your baby

After the birth you can have your baby lifted straight onto you before the cord is cut so that you can be close to each other immediately. If you prefer, you can ask the midwife to wipe your baby and wrap him or her in a blanket first.

My comments on anything special I would like to happen immediately after the birth:

Feeding your baby

Breast milk is the best form of nutrition for babies as it provides all the nutrients a baby needs and has lasting benefits for the health of your child. Infant formula milk can be used as an alternative to breast milk.

My comments about feeding my baby:

Vitamin K for your baby

Vitamin K is needed to make the blood clot properly. Some newborn babies have too little vitamin K so it may be suggested that your baby be given vitamin K either by injection or by mouth.

Any other comments or preferences about me and my baby immediately after the birth:

Delivering the placenta after the birth

After your baby is born your midwife will offer you an injection in your thigh. This contains the drug syntometrine or syntocinon which helps the womb contract and can prevent the heavy bleeding that some women may experience without it.

My preference about delivering the placenta:

Extra Requirements

Special requirements

Please tick any that apply to you. You can fill in more details in the box below.

More information about my special requirements:

Midwives, nurses and doctors in training

Midwives, nurses and doctors need to observe women in labour as part of their training. They will always be supervised by a senior health professional.

Other comments or preferences about my labour and birth

General Comments

General Comments

Your Birthplan

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