I've never used a pool before, but am thinking about it this time. I've heard so many good things about them - I'm just not sure.
My last 3 births have been pretty quick, so I'm wondering if filling it and getting it ready will just be distraction or whether it will be worth it??
How long does it take to fill the pool? I imagine we would have it all blown up and just fill it once I was in labor? What about afterwards, it is easy to empty and clean?
Any advice or feedback would be appreciated!
And my hubby is concerned about the water being "gross" and me wanting him in the water...
I didn't use a birth pool at home, so I can't address the setup time question, but yes, I think you'd have to set it up in advance and just fill it at the end. The water has to be hot.
As for the "gross" part, my DH had the same concerns and spent my whole pregnancy joking about bathing suits and pool skimmers, but when it came right down to it: (1) I didn't need him IN the water anyway and (2) it wasn't all that gross...I mean, my water had broken earlier and I guess all births are different, but the midwife will skim out anything solid so there's not all that much in the water but some very diluted blood, etc. Personally, if you think water might be helpful to you, I'd just leave the question of him getting in or not until the time comes, at which point he probably won't be thinking about it nearly as hard as he is while picturing it in advance!
I LOVED my birth pool!!! Seriously, the pool and one of my midwives were my hero with my back labor. lol. I had the pool blown up before hand so all they had to do was fill it with water. I had a 2 hour labor and it took about an hour to fill it up all the way. I was in the pool through transition and birth and with my back labor it was seriously the best thing ever. I have heard of people who have fast labors that actually keep it half filled with cold water so when they go into labor all they have to do is turn the hot on full blast and fill it up the rest of the way.
As for the emptying, it was a piece of cake. The midwife usually takes care of that part and mine used a pump to pump the water out into the toilet. Yes the water gets kind of nasty but my DH never got in. I actually liked it that way because it gave me more room to move around ans get comfy. He was right next to me or touching me the whole time though.
Yes, mine knelt behind me and poured ice water over my head and shoulders between contractions because I was so HOT in there. :) It felt like heaven.
I also LOVED my birth pool, but mine was more of a portable spa, not a blowup pool. It had hard sides and a heater and a filter. We set it up a couple of weeks ahead of my due date, and it was HEAVEN to soak in every evening to relax before bed. I had a very long labor; I was in & out of it for 2.5 days and I can't imagine laboring for that long without one. I never had anyone in the water with me during labor, my DH or midwives sat on a stool next to the pool.
I'll be honest, it was gross to clean. My water broke in the pool, with meconium, and then I transferred to the hospital. I ended up having a c-section and didn't get around to emptying or cleaning the pool for about a week. No one bothered to clean the pool or empty it; they just put the cover on & left it. So, yeah, week-old water with meconium & vernix floating in it, very yucky. It wasn't difficult, and it wouldn't have been gross a week earlier. I skimmed out what I could, pumped the rest down the bathtub, rinsed it down, and then wiped it out with a bleach solution.
I used this pool for my last birth: http://www.madeinwater.com/
The birth before that I used a baby pool (those fish inflatable pools.)
I love birthing in water and just decided that this time I'm going to skip the pool and just use our garden tub. My last 2 births have been pretty fast-- and by the time I wanted in the pool, I got into my bathtub to wait while the pool filled and then spent only 20-30 minutes in the actual pool. We kept it blown up with air and just needed to fill with water when it was "go time"-- but that seemed to take too long for me.....
Honestly, I've never cleaned out the pool (dh does it!) But he was really in favor of birthing in the bathtub so that we could skip the hoses and just "pull the plug" when birth was over. I just hope I don't regret not using it this time....
It was an awesome tub for us. I wish I was closer to you-- I'd just send it your way. It was only used for about 30 minutes ever-- and then cleaned w bleach and packed up in a box. *sigh*
You could probably make some money renting it out!
Audra, that pool looks amazing! My mw has a pool I can use - I wonder if it is the same sort of thing? Or they suggest buying a kids pool...
And Stacy, eeww, someone totally should have cleaned that out for you. I'll make sure ours (if we end up using one) gets done right away - Your experience doesn't sound like fun at all!
Maybe it won't be that gross. My water has never broken spontaneously. With my last HB, my mw only ruptured it when it became obvious the intact membranes were holding up progress (I'm GBS positive). I was 8cm and DD was born 12 minutes later.
I birthed in the same tub Leigh used at our birth center and had a very similar DH situation. My water had broken prior to arriving but the fluid that was leaking was clear (or else I'd likely have been going somewhere else) and didn't lead to messy tub water. When I started pushing, I'm sure there was some "stuff" but the MW and nurses did the job of scooping it away. DH being in the tub while I labored wasn't an issue because I didn't want him (or anyone else) near me. Just before my DD was born, DH jumped in in just his underwear. The water could have been acid and on fire and he would have jumped in. Afterward, the water was bright red but we didn't care one tiny bit. Heck, there's a new baby in the room! The nurse took care of cleaning the tub. You should ask your MW if she'd do that for you. I imagine she might because I just can't see a DH doing it when he should be caring for mommy & baby. I love love loved everything about the tub and my water birth. I can't imagine giving birth out of the water. I showered off an hour or so after the birth to get the tub ickies off me but it took that long for the notion of uncleanliness to settle in. Again, there's a new baby in the room!
Oh my water wasn't really that gross-- dh just hates cleaning the pool--lol! My water hasn't broken until right at pushing with the last three....and it has been clear.
With Lexi I really didn't even have a detachment bleed from the placenta-- so the water was nearly perfectly clear. I got out to deliver the placenta (nearly 40 minutes after baby had arrived....) So I didn't start bleeding until I was in the bed.