When to go to hospital?

—Going to hospital in established labour is recommended for first time, low risk pregnant mothers with spontaneous labours that have started at home. There is some great research that shows it is better to wait till you’re in established or active labour before going to hospital. You increase your risks of a Cesarean birth if you go into early. Attend a Active Birth Workshop with your partner to gain the confidence to stay home and manage labour and then go to hospital knowing you are in good established labour.

 Dr Sarah Buckley’s review of a recent study showed that the "Adjusted likelihood of cesarean birth was five times greater for women admitted at 0‐3 cm ... and two times greater for women admitted at 4‐5 cm... compared to 6‐10 cm....” She suggested that to promote normal physiologic birth, low‐risk, nulliparous women should be engaged in shared decision‐making about timing of admission after spontaneous onset of labor." https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/birt.12417

Here are some useful tips for going to hospital:

  1. Wait till your contractions are progressive, that is they have been regular 5 mins apart and lasting minimum of 60 seconds and have begun to get closer together moving to 3 mins apart and lasting for 75 secs.

  2. It’s always important to phone ahead. Usually it is the mother’s instinct, the birth supporter’s observation of consistent regular contractions and the midwife’s experience over the phone that helps you make the decision to go.

  3. Remember to keep your baby in a good position on the way to hospital by kneeling on the back seat facing either forward or backwards. Keeping upright will help the baby stay optimally positioned, or if your feeling like bearing down then on the back seat put your head down bottom up with soft breaths will assist you to avoid pushing till at the hospital. Learn birthing positions in yogababy’s Active Birth Yoga classes.