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When should I go to the hospital?

Posted by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 12:35 AM
  • 9 Replies

Hey Mommas!

Im due June 2nd...looking forward to my natural childbirth! With my first son my water broke and I went into full blown labor 6 hours later he was in my arms nursing away....My husband and I left for the hospital as soon as my water broke because thats what "the doctor said to do" now I am more educated and know that I should stay at home longer before I go to the hospital and labor at home as much as I can. Being as I had a pretty short labor with my first and assuming this one will be short too *knock on wood!* how long should I stay home? I live about 15 minutes away from the birthing center....I dont want to cut it too close...but I dont want to labor at the hospital for a long time which will give them more time to pressure me into drugs! I know its a hard question to give a straight answer too...just wondering in anyone had any advice! Thanks so much!

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 12:35 AM
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by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 12:54 AM

With short and smooth labors, I have to ask if you have thought about a homebirth?


by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 1:05 AM

Something you will have to gauge in the moment, but in general, maybe when contractions are about 4 minutes apart, lasting a minute, and like this for an hour.
If things seem to be creeping along, verrry gradually changing (or the opposite, speeding to be more intense more quickly) you can adjust the plan, of course.

My husband called to check in with the MWs and they listened to my contractions over the phone and were able to tell with how I sounded & was coping about how I might be doing.  

Your MWs can give you an idea for what they tend to do and will help you out...
You can also consider a birth doula to help you out there in-person.
Or you might consider a homebirth as Tammy mentioned, another great alternative.


by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 1:48 AM

We have talked about a homebirth and trust me I would love to do it but my husband and I do not agree on it. :(

So birthing center it is........with an OBGYN because Midwives are not allowed to deliver at our hospital......small towns sucks sometimes! Thanks for the info though....I have been looking into a doula!

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 2:59 AM

A hospital birth center is different than a freestanding birth center.    If you're going through the hospital it might make a difference how you do things.
A doula is good, a birth plan, and all...  Preparation is important, anyhow.

But I would go through the concerns of your DH and talk about his views.    Because where you birth and who you hire to attend you will affect your risk factors, it's good to be on the same page, have no regrets, and feel confident.


by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 3:54 AM

My dear husband read this over my shoulder and his advice: "before the head pops out"...


Anyway, it's something you'll know when the time comes. When you feel like you just can't take it anymore- when your body is in total control and you can't regain the control (it's a good thing, dont worry!) it's probably best to go. :) I wouldn't go by contraction timing primarily, it's more of an instinct. My contractions were 1:45-2:00mins long and 5-12 minutes apart for 16 hours. The intensity tell you more than anything.

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 6:06 AM

Trust your body. Was your first birth drug free, if so you've felt these sensations before and will be able to better understand what is going on. As already mentioned every labor is different so I would gauge by the intensity and how much you need to do to cope. Living that close is great, delivering with an OB in a hospital not so great. :(

Its unfortunate your husband isn't on board with a home delivery, my husband feels the same but i'm hoping to give him information and stats to help change his mind

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 2:18 PM

I say once you start to loose your cool with labor that is usually a sing the end is near.  How far along are you?  My DH was against homebirth I convinced him in a week with videos and information etc.  Now he is all for it.  So it isn't too late to work on him about it. 

by on Feb. 20, 2011 at 3:57 PM

I definately agree with the instinct thing. During my second birth I labored at home most of it. I went to the hospital when I could no longer get comfortable sitting or laying down.I really felt I should have stayed home a bit longer but my living situation didn't really alow for that. However, once at the hospital I had a triage nurse that broke my water without my permission (my records say SROM) and labor intensified but wasn't productive. So in away I wish I'd waited a little longer.

by on Feb. 21, 2011 at 11:14 AM

You say small towns suck, but I don't even think of Home Birth as an option in a city.  God forbid anything goes wrong, heading to a hospital and getting stuck in traffic could turn a small problem into something major!!

I'm doing a birthing center in a hospital.

I think you should try for a home birth if you're only 15 minutes from a hospital and traffic won't be an issue.

Good luck! 

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