Childbirth is one of the toughest things mothers have to go through, and it certainly is no easy feat! As excited as you are to welcome your little one into the world, it can be a little overwhelming to think about your big day.
Part of what makes it a little daunting is that anything could happen. What will you need once you go into labour? When will it be? So many questions left unanswered.
Every mother has a different experience when it comes to childbirth, and more often than not, things don’t go to plan.
That’s why It’s important to prepare yourself for these various possibilities, so you have a plan to take on any situation that arises.
In this article, we’ll give you some tips on what you can do during and right before labour to make your childbirth experience smoother!
1. Keep active and healthy
This is something you can start on at any stage of your pregnancy - getting your body ready for D-day! Getting mentally and physically ready is the first step in prepping up months before labour.
Studies show that continuous exercise during pregnancy is safe and is beneficial for both mums and babies. This is mainly because having a healthier body means you’ll be better prepared for a strenuous labour process, especially when it stretches past 12-15 hours.
We’d recommend doing some light exercises by walking, swimming, and even practising prenatal yoga!
Of course, do check in with your gynae first on whether regular exercise is safe and appropriate for your body at your current stage of pregnancy.
2. Attend birthing classes or read up on the childbirth process
Giving birth for the first time is uncharted waters for new mothers. It may seem daunting because you don’t know what to expect at first, so preparing yourself for this mentally by learning more about the childbirth process could definitely help.
You can attend prenatal or birthing classes that teach you breathing as well as relaxation techniques for when you’re going through labour.
Take some time to also read up on other moms’ experiences and any other tips they may have.
You could also ask friends and family who have experienced giving birth. These may come in useful if you were to go through the same situation during your own child birthing experience!
3. Stay hydrated and energised
This may not occur to people naturally, but childbirth is an extremely physically tiring process for mums!
You’ll need to keep your energy levels high by fueling yourself with light snacks while you are in the early stages of your labour.
Though you may not feel like it due to the nerves, this will be especially important during the later hours of your labour when you need to tap on your energy sources to push!
Don’t forget to hydrate as well - it’s common for mums to suck on ice chips or sip on cool water in between contractions.
4. Move around if you need to
While you’re in labour, lying down can sometimes be more uncomfortable than standing up. Many mums have shared that they found more relief and comfort in walking and moving around during labour!
So if you have to, don’t be afraid to stand up and pace the room while you’re between contractions.
If you’re thinking about what you can do before you go into labour that could help with easing discomfort, consider visiting a physical therapist! They’re experts on preventing muscle injuries as well, which is why plenty of mums seek their advice on how to prepare their bodies for labour and childbirth.
5. (Try to) Relax and stay calm
This is definitely much easier said than done, but try your very best to relax and stay calm. Let your gynae and the team of nurses advise you through the process.
It’s common to feel anxious as you’re going through labour, but keep in mind the tips you learnt in birthing classes and try practising them when you can (or have your partner or family member remind you too!)
You can also try rhythmic breathing to help calm yourself down. This will help you focus better during contractions and also potentially lessen the pain you’re experiencing during each cycle of contractions.
Bonus: How to have a smoother recovery
After childbirth, mothers sometimes experience bladder control issues during their postnatal recover process. To help with this, we’d recommend using the Elvie Kegel trainer. It’s an award-winning kegel trainer which strengthens your pelvic floor for better bladder control.
The trainer can also be connected to your phone to better track your progress. Find out more about how this can help by heading over to Hatchery’s online baby store!
Ready to welcome your little one?
Besides preparing yourself for your baby’s arrival, make sure you’ve also got all the baby essentials that you’ll need! From baby convertible cribs to nursing chairs and pillows, we’ll make sure you’re well equipped for your little tot to be welcomed home.