You have a million questions about labor. How long will labor last? How bad is the pain going to be? Can I really do this? There is no way to know the answers to these questions in advance, but you can learn about certain procedures now, that will help you feel ready for what lies ahead.
One way to help prepare yourself is to understand the medical routines that may follow your admission to a hospital or birthing center. It's a good idea to tour the hospital/center before the birth to become more familiar with it and its practices.
When you get to there, you will probably follow steps similar to these:
Before hand, discuss with your caregiver, and your labor coach your preferences regarding the use of pain medications, monitors and other interventions. Writing down your wishes in a birth plan is an excellent idea. Let your labor coach or doula remind the staff of your wishes referring them to your birth plan. Knowing what to expect from your caregiver and the hospital/center staff can help you prepare for what lies ahead. Congratulations soon you will have your new baby in your arms!
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