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Comforts of Home Midwifery - FAQ

Q: Is homebirth safe?

A: In 2005 the British Medical Journal published the MANA 2000 study, the first ever large-scale prospective study of the safety of homebirth in North America. This study illustrated that homebirth with a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) is as safe as a low-risk hospital birth. The cesarean section rate for planned homebirths was drastically lower than planned hospital births. Additionally, the rates of interventions were consistently half that of hospitals. Most importantly, there were no fewer babies dying or injured in hospital than at home. The satisfaction of homebirth women vs hospital birth women was significantly higher with 97% of women reporting satisfaction with their homebirths.  Additional info on the safety of homebirth:

www.understandingbirthbetter.com/index.php

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9271961

www.memphismidwife.com/files/bjog_NetherlandsStudy.pdf

www.memphismidwife.com/files/CDC_HB_Increase_Document.pdf

 

Q: Why choose homebirth?

A: Women choose homebirth for a variety of reasons.  The main reason tends to be that they want the personalized care that a midwife provides.

35 Reasons why to choose a homebirth

 

Q: How is a midwife different from my regular OB and can I stop seeing my OB if I hire one?

A: As a primary care provider, we perform many of the same duties you may be familiar with already. We check your baby's growth, listen to the heartbeat prenatally, and comprehensively monitor your pregnancy. In addition to physical care, we spend a good deal of time discussing matters of importance to you. We understand that pregnancy and birth are very emotional and spiritual times for women and their partners. In short, we congratulate ourselves on an excellent "bedside manner". We can do your labwork, check your glucose levels, monitor iron levels in your blood, and order a sonogram if medically necessary or desired by client. You may not need to see an OB during your pregnancy.

 

Q: How many births do you do per month and what happens if you have two women in labor at the same time?

A: We restrict our calendar schedule to minimize the possibility of births overlapping. If a client contacts a midwife to report signs of labor while the team is attending another birth, someone from the midwifery team will visit this second client to evaluate her labor progress, report by phone, and may stay with her or return to the first client’s home. Should the rare instance occur where two women are birthing closely or at the same time, a backup midwife may be called in.

 

Q: What supplies do you bring to a birth?

A: Our birthbags include, but are not limited to the following supplies:

respiratory and resuscitation equipment for mother and baby, anti-hemorrhagic agents, fetal heart tone doppler, sterile instruments, suturing materials, sterile disposable supplies, and antibiotic eye ointment for baby, and general labor support items.

 

Q: Can I have a waterbirth?

A: The benefits of water to a laboring mother are numerous. You are free to birth in your own garden tub, purchase a blow up pool from In His Hands or rent I can give you a list of resources on where to rent one.. The midwives at Comforts of Home Midwifery are experienced in attending waterbirths and encourage the use of hydrotherapy as a labor support method. For more information, see the Waterbirth International website.

 

Q: What happens if there is a complication during my labor, birth, or postpartum?

A: We strive to be as non-interventive as possible, thereby reducing the risk of complications. Complications in birth are rare with a healthy normal pregnancy and when birth progresses without undue interference. We take plenty of time at prenatal visits to make sure that our clients are in optimal health before labor begins. We diligently monitor our clients to ensure no complication arises that would contraindicates a homebirth.
Should a complication arise in labor, there is usually ample time to transport to the hospital. We practice safety first and are frequently assessing the condition of mother and baby using medically approved monitoring methods. Hospital transport choices are discussed prenatally. Once we transport a client to the hospital, we stay by her side until both mother and baby are stable.
Although no one enjoys discussing the possibility of a hospital transfer, it is a possibility that we take very seriously. Our ultimate goal is a healthy baby and mother.

Q: How messy is a homebirth?

A: This is a very common question. While there are fluids involved in childbirth, we take great care to ensure that your mattress, linens, and carpets are protected. We carry absorbant pads for containing fluids. Before leaving your home, the bed is clean, the disposable pads gone, and any soiled linens in the wash. We even take out the trash!

 

Q: What happens after the birth?

A: We generally stay for 2-4 hours after the birth of the baby. We ensure mother and baby are stable and healthy, clean up, provide breastfeeding support, perform a thorough newborn exam, check mom for tears and repair if necessary, and complete documentation in the chart regarding the details of the labor, birth and newborn exam. A relaxing herbal bath is provided for you and your baby.  It is an opportunity for mom and baby to bond, get cleaned up from any birth fluids, and the herbs assist with healing any tissues that might be damaged. We follow up at 24 hours postpartum. We are completely available 24/7 for questions/concerns any time during the postpartum period.

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