The delivery room can be an uncertain place for a first-time mom. What will it be like? Who will be with you? Well, today we offer six things to know or do before entering the delivery room to help you better prepare for the big day.
These tips come courtesy of Dawn Lanser, a wife and mother of six, who has years of experience as an RN/BSN nurse, Lamaze-Certified Childbirth Educator and International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant. She is also the owner of Lanser’s The Natural Way store (one of our site sponsor’s) that provides carefully selected products for mothers, babies and children.
Find a pediatrician.
Make sure you meet with a pediatrician and that you interview him/her before the baby is born. Just as it is important to carefully choose your midwife or OB/gyn, be sure to find a pediatrician who is a good fit for you and your family. If you plan to breastfeed, find a doctor who is supportive and educated. Unfortunately typical pediatric training doesn’t include breastfeeding education.
Eat before you go to the hospital.
It is common practice not to allow you “real” food when you are in active labor. Labor is like running a marathon; you need fuel to cross the finish line. So, nourish yourself before entering the hospital and take some nutritious snacks with you. Just try to stay away from gassy foods that can cause you abdominal pain, bad odors and embarrassment.
Bring pieces of home with you.
Let’s face it; as much as they try, hospital rooms are not as homey and cozy as your own home. So, to help give your delivery room a more homelike feel, bring aromatherapy oils (candles aren’t allowed), a small vase of flowers, and your own pillow to replace the icky plastic-like one the hospital provides.
Keep your birth plan short, sweet and reasonable.
Birth plans are a great way to inform yourself about birth and open dialog between you and your midwife or OB/gyn. But keep it simple. Your nurse will read it and be there for you during your labor, so make it easy to read and highlight your major desires, such as “I want a natural, drug-free birth” or “Hit me with an epidural ASAP.”
Your nurse matters.
If you are with a group of OB/gyns or midwives, don’t fret about who will deliver your baby. One of the most important people in that delivery room is your nurse. That is who you spend the most time with and the person who will comfort and inform you during the labor process. (Tip: baked goods are very much appreciated by nurses!)
Know that most women poop when they are pushing. It is no biggie. It is actually a good sign that you are pushing correctly. So don’t worry about it, after all, nurses are professionals. They’ve seen it all before.
Tell us, what did you wish you knew before the delivery room? Or, if you’re a parent-to-be, what questions do you have? Comment below and let us know!