You think you're in labor
You can time your contractions from the beginning of one to the beginning of the next.
You should not take any medications unless instructed by your doctor. If you feel like eating and drinking, go ahead, unless you anticipate a cesarean birth. Light meals and fluids are important for energy later in labor.
Be sure you have asked your physician when he/she wants to be called when your labor starts. Please notify the Family Birth Center charge nurse when you plan to come to the hospital, 625-4773.
Review and finalize your birth plan.
If you have children at home, confirm arrangements for their care while you're away.
Make sure you have packed clothing and diapers for the baby's homecoming.
Place your newborn's car seat in the car so it is ready to bring the baby home.
- Your nurse will manage your labor according to the instructions from your doctor. Your heart rate, respirations, blood pressure, and temperature will be monitored periodically, and your urine will be checked for protein and glucose. Vaginal exams will be done to check the progress of your labor.
- A test may be performed to determine if your water has "broken."
- A fetal monitor will be used to assess your contractions and your baby's well-being.
- You may eat and drink as instructed by your doctor, and you will be
- encouraged to walk and move while you are in labor.
- If you choose to have an epidural, an anesthesiologist will be called.
- An episiotomy occasionally is performed at delivery if needed.
- A special suction device or forceps may be used to assist in the birth if needed.
- If it is determined that your baby will require special care at birth or shortly after birth, a pediatrician or neonatologist will be called to attend the delivery of your baby.
- Identification bands will be placed on the baby and on you and your partner. Your nurse will discuss your baby's security at the hospital.
- The usual length of stay after a vaginal birth is about 1-2 days, for a cesarean birth 3-4 days.