At Central Maine Healthcare, our goal is to help you have the best birth experience possible. To help you and your doctor better understand your birth preferences, we encourage parents-to-be to create a birth plan.
Central Maine Healthcare can provide you with a birth plan form through your care provider.
What is a Birth Plan?
A birth plan is a personal care plan that outlines your preferences for how you’d like your labor, birth, and postpartum care to go. By creating a plan, you can determine exactly what kind of care you would like for you and your baby.
We encourage you and your spouse or birthing partner to enroll in our childbirth education classes, where you can learn about options that will be available to you during the labor experience. This will help you decide what should go into your birth plan and if your expectations are in sync with any requirements your hospital and birthing unit may have.
Creating Your Birth Plan
To create your plan, we suggest starting by making some notes about your labor and birth preferences. You can address experiences such as:
- The sort of emotional support you would like to have. (For example, who would you like to be with you?)
- The special comforts you would like to have throughout labor. (For example, would you like to spend time in a labor tub?)
- The ways that you would like to alternative therapies. (For example, would you be interested in trying out our birthing stools and physical therapy balls?)
Be sure to share your birth plan with your healthcare provider and other maternity support people, as they might have some great ideas for you. Also show it to those who will be with you during your labor and birth experience. You can go over your plan with the team ahead of time, so they know what your preferences are.
Keep in mind that if your birth does not go exactly as you planned, it’s okay! This is where flexibility is the key. Learn about the ways that labor can unfold and plan for how you will handle unexpected situations, then focus on the positive.
A birth plan reflects how you would like to navigate a joyful experience. By writing things down, you also let those assisting you know more about who you are.