What’s a birth plan and do you really need one?
I read a lot about birth plans. Sites I visit and my growing library of pregnancy books, advise me to include this or that in my birth plan, talk to my doctor about my birth plan, or make sure so and so knows about my birth plan. Only problem, I have no clue what a birth plan is.
Does everyone need a birth plan? Any harm to having a birth plan? Is there a standard list of issues to include in a birth plan? What happens if I don’t have a birth plan, does baby curl up and refuse to be born, living in my uterus forever?
I decided to do some research and write this post at once, so here goes. And, by all means, don’t take my advice alone. I’m the world’s worst planner. But, please do include your tips below.
When researching my birth plan, I went straight to my expert pool, my always helpful Twitter followers. They helped me discover both online tools and books to help me format a birth plan. Special thanks to @NewMomJD for leading me to the online tool at www.birthplan.com. And, thanks to @babydickey and @first_pregnancy for their help too. I’m using it to jot down my plan. The birth plan creator leads you through different sections of labor and delivery, helpful for new moms. The birth plan creator is a good starting point, but I’m glad that each section in the wizard includes extra slots, I’ve been looking at a lot of different birth plans to decide exactly what I want.
From what I gather, a birth plan is exactly what it sounds like, a plan for birth including all aspects of labor and delivery. You write this out and give it to your doctor and hospital. I think it sounds like a good idea and serves a purpose of also helping me as a first time mom-to-be educate myself about the whole giving birth process.
I sat down this rainy morning to create my entire birth plan before realizing I had too much research to do first. I also have a few new questions for my doctor. Good thing my weekly appointment is tomorrow.
I definitely want to talk to her about pain meds. I always said I’d be a give me all the meds possible type of gal, but realized I didn’t know much about what these medications meant to my labor. I hope my doctor can give me her experience on meds lengthening labor and so on. The options are also more varied than simply meds or no meds. I want to know what each medication will do to me.
Most of all, I want to talk to my doctor about birth plans in general. I’m wondering how many of her patients include them, if they really get sent to the hospital, and if doctors really look at them.
I’ll post my birth plan in it’s entirety when I finally decide on everything. In the mean time, have you created a birth plan?