Chelsey and Dillon, with sweet baby Calvin, summer 2020. Shared with permission.
Is home birth safe?
Yes! Home birth is a safe option for most low-risk pregnant women. Only recently have comprehensive studies been completed that offer the statistics to show that home birth, attended by a trained provider, is safe. You can read more about the safety of home birth here.
Why hire a midwife?
Midwives are trained to recognize birth as a normal, natural, physiologic process that will work without complication a vast majority of the time. This training offers a perspective that leads midwives to generally practice in a 'hands-off' manner, allowing nature to take its course. There are always exceptions to this and occasionally you'll find a midwife that practices with a more hands-on approach just as you'll occasionally find obstetricians who practice similarly to midwives. Overall, midwives are skilled and trained birth professionals who offer prenatal, labor, and postpartum care to women. Most midwives offer a more personal approach during prenatals and build relationships with clients during their prenatal visits, along with conducting the usual prenatal checks. Home birth midwives are able to be more present during birth than many in-hospital providers as their only focus is one client instead of many laboring at the same time.
Aren't Midwives and Doulas the same thing?
No, doulas are not healthcare providers. A doula's support is strictly emotional, informational and physical. Occasionally a doula is also a healthcare provider, but when working in the role of a doula, they should only be performing doula-specific tasks. A doula is a great addition to a birth team but is not responsible for the health care of mom and baby.
I've had a prior cesarean. Can I still have a home birth?
Many women who have had a prior cesarean will be good candidates for a home birth. The decision to have a VBAC at home is one to be made alongside with your midwife, as you and your midwife will be able to have a comprehensive look at your past birth history and what risk factors might be present that could prevent home birth from being an option.
Why do women choose to have a home birth?
There are many reasons women choose to have home births. Some have grown up in homes where home birth was the norm and have decided to choose that route for themselves. Some women prefer to give birth in their own environment, having a midwife come to them while they're laboring instead of needing to drive to a hospital. Almost every woman choosing to have a home birth has researched the safety of home birth and chosen to have a home birth because they believe it a safe place to give birth and know that their risk of intervention is much lower than births that take place in a hospital setting.
Are home births covered by insurance?
Some insurance companies will cover home births, but many will not. Check with your home birth provider to find out if the insurance you have typically covers home birth. Your home birth provider may tell you about a verification of benefits process that will give you a better answer on whether or not your insurance will cover home birth.
Home birth expenses are covered by HSA's and FSA's, as well as Christian Healthcare Sharing plans, such as Samaritan Ministries.
Isn't Home Birth Messy?
Home births aren't as messy as you think! We provide you with a list of birth supplies to gather prior to your birth and many of these supplies will be used to contain any mess from amniotic fluid and blood. Your midwives clean up before leaving, so your home will not be left messy.
What if something goes wrong?
Most of the time, pregnancy, labor and birth will proceed in a normal physiological manner. Midwives are trained to recognize early warning signs of potential complications and have the training to manage common complications such as hemorrhage, dystocia, respiratory distress, etc. A big part of preparing for labor and birth is the comprehensive prenatal care offered during your antenatal period, which allows your midwife to use her training to make sure your pregnancy is continuing to stay low-risk. Part of the preparation for a home birth includes preparing a transport plan in case a transport to a hospital becomes necessary. Should a transport become necessary, your midwife will accompany you to the hospital to encourage a smooth transfer of care. Most transfers to the hospital during a planned home birth are for non-emergent reasons.
Do you carry options for pain relief during labor?
Non-allopathic pain relief options such as relaxation, massage, doula support, baths, walking, position changes, etc. are recommended when laboring at home. Childbirth education classes, particularly the Bradley Method, will often greatly aid you in learning different options for managing labor. Every woman and pregnancy is different and there is not a one-size-fits-all approach to managing labor, but your midwife will encourage the above to help you manage your labor as effectively as possible.
Don't see your question among this list? Please fill out the contact form or call me and I will gladly answer your questions.