Your birth plan is a list of what your preferences are during labor, birth and immediately after birth; What you want and don’t want.
Just a few examples are things like, who you want present before and/or during labor, if you want to be mobile during labor, whether or not you want an epidural, etc. For an amazing birth plan checklist, click here. I am going to give you three effective strategies to assist you in writing your birth plan:
- 1.) KEEP IT SIMPLE – If your birth plan doesn’t fit on one page, it probably won’t get read over thoroughly. Don’t put down things that aren’t relevant such as, if your birthing facility doesn’t offer an enema as standard procedure, don’t put on your birth plan that you do not wish to receive an enema. Put what’s most important to you! If you want intermittent fetal monitoring and to not be on a monitor the whole time, put it in your birth plan! If you don’t want your labor augmented, put it on the list! I think you get what I’m saying here!
- 2.) PREPARE FOR THE UNEXPECTED – Births don’t always go as planned. If your labor isn’t progressing and your care provider is wanting to augment your labor, how would you prefer them to do that, if it is medically necessary? Would you prefer to try natural methods first such as nipple stimulation? Are you okay with them breaking your waters? Also, if a cesarean becomes medically necessary, how would you like that to look? Do you want the screen lowered so you can watch your baby come out? Do you prefer your hands left free so you can touch your baby? Do you want immediate skin-to-skin in the operating room as long as your baby is healthy? There’s so much to think about so do your research and, if you can, take a Childbirth Education Class.
- 3.) GO OVER YOUR BIRTH PLAN WITH YOUR CARE PROVIDER – Go over your one page birth plan with your care provider so you can rest assured you are both on the same page. If he or she decides that something you want is too risky or they simply say no, ask them why they are against it. After that, if it’s a no go and your okay with that, mark it off your birth plan. Once you and your care provider have approved your birth plan, have them sign it! Take the signed copy to your birthing facility so the staff knows your care provider approves of it.
Just remember, keep your birth plan as concise as possible. Go over it with your partner and any relevant family members. If you are utilizing a doula, give them a copy and go over it with them as well. Remember, the staff can sometimes be notorious for not reading birth plans thoroughly so, keep it short and rely on your partner or doula to help ensure that your birth stays as close to what you have planned, as long as it is medically safe.
Still needing help writing your birth plan? Go to our contact page and reach out to us! We’d love you help you!