How to write a birth plan? A good birth plan needs to be simple and easy to read. Midwives and obstetricians look after so many different people that to write too much will just get forgotten. Below is an example of a great birth plan for you to use and adapt as you see fit. I helped write this plan and was the doula at the birth… a very successful, peaceful breech VBAC birth
Midwife/ Obstetricians Name;
- I am a strong and intelligent woman who has done in depth research about VBAC and breech birth and understand the risks and benefits. Please treat me with the respect and intelligence I deserve, something that I didn’t get during my first birth. I trust my body and I trust the hospital to keep me safe.
- I understand my rights under the NHS Constitution For England 2013.
- I only want medical professionals supporting me who support my decision to birth vaginally. I will ask for second or third opinions if I feel it is needed and will ask for a different professional if I do not feel confident with my support.
- I will not accept an IV line on the grounds of standard procedure for VBAC/breech as it stresses me too much and I will not be relaxed enough to keep my birth hormones happy.
- For safety reasons I will birth upright. I DO NOT want to be strapped to a bed on my back. Please monitor baby with a mobile device.
- For my birth I would like to feel unobserved, but supported and nurtured and free to move as I wish.
- To keep adrenaline down and oxytocin high I will eat and drink if I am hungry (I understand bile in an empty stomach is just as much of a problem as food during surgery), I will be kept warm, relaxed and positive. The lights will be kept low and I will be left to focus on relaxation.
- I do not want any students or external people in the room, other than the people I have listed, I believe this was a problem stalling my labour in my previous birth.
- Please don’t discuss my labour/progress where I can hear you as this will increase my adrenaline and make me lose focus.
- I do not want internal exams unless they are absolutely necessary and I don’t want people coming in and out feeling free to examine and touch me as they please. One person for all internals is sufficient. I need to remain relaxed and focused.
- I will listen to my body and move as I need to so that I can birth my baby.
- Please do not offer any medical pain relief, I would like to use water for pain relief or any position that feels right to me.
- Please do not tell me possible scenarios during labour. If a reality arises then we can discuss it and act accordingly. I would like to stay focused and positive, and will make decisions after discussing them with my husband and doula in private.
- Please keep all phones and telecoms outside the birthing room.
- I want to give birth without an episiotomy and be guided as to when to breathe my baby out to avoid tears.
- I would like to be the first person to hold my baby and breastfeed as soon as possible.
- Please leave the placenta attached for at least an hour after birth.
- I would like 24 hour rooming in with my baby no matter how my baby is birthed.
- I do not want my baby to leave my side for any medical procedures without my husband and I both being present.
- Please do not offer my baby any formula, I want to breastfeed exclusively.
Please respect my wishes.
Samantha Thurlby-Brooks is the creator and director of Mumanu Ltd; specialising in pregnancy massage, postnatal massage and BirthWorks antenatal classes in London, UK. Samantha supports her clients with kindness, understanding, knowledge and a damn good rub! She is also the creator of the award winning Mumanu Pregnancy Pillow
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