When you are laboring at home, you have the benefit of being in a place where you tend to feel the most comfortable. Many find they are able to cope better being in a place where all of their normal comfort items are.
Just like all other mammals, we have the same ability to give birth as mother cats, foxes and elephants. When we are in labor, there is a dance of hormones happening that facilitate labor contractions and help us naturally deal with pain. Think, where does the mother fox go to seek comfort and safety when she delivers her babies? All of these tools are used to help you achieve the same thing.
For tangible items, I have included a link to an Amazon shopping list that shows some of my favorite tools for a healthy pregnancy, birth and postpartum. Below the button is a list of great strategies for finding comfort during a natural birth, that enhance our innate ability to relax into and ride the waves of contractions.
I offer waterbirth as an option for laboring and birth at home. The benefits of laboring and / or birthing in water are numerous to both you and your baby. The simple act of immersing yourself in a spacious tub of warm water immediately soothes the body, allowing buoyancy and a loss of gravity to assist with labor.
Waterbirth or Laboring In Water
It would be accurate to say that the majority of our homebirth clients utilize water at some point during their labor. If you had just experienced a day of physical or emotional work, slipping into a nice warm bath or zoning out in a shower seems to help us relax tremendously. The more you are able to relax in labor, the less tension you have in your body, which reduces the amount of pain you experience. Using water during labor also helps us conserve energy.
Many of our clients choose to use their own tub or shower during birth, or use a birth tub rental agency. The nice thing about using a tub rental company is that they are able to set everything up for you in labor... and after you have your baby, they come back, clean it all up and take it with them.
If you plan to use your shower quite a bit during labor, I would suggest finding a shower chair. Having a chair allows you to sit and enjoy the sensation of water without expending energy standing up. Even if you don't like sitting in the chair, it's nice to have something to lean onto or hold during a contraction. Bathrooms tend to be great 'caves' or dens when a mother is feeling overwhelmed by her sensations.