Here’s the great news about delivering at The Mother Baby Center—as a collaboration of Allina Health and Children’s Minnesota, we’re here to safely accommodate your needs and preferences. A birth plan is one way to communicate those needs and preferences to your birth team—and help clarify them for yourself—but it’s certainly not a requirement.
Keep in mind that birth isn’t always predictable, and your preferences may change too, but a birth plan can help you prepare for the big day. Whether or not you create a birth plan for the birth of your baby, we’ll be ready for you!
What is a birth plan?
A birth plan, established with your doctor or midwife during your prenatal care appointments at your clinic, is simply a way to document your preferences for labor and delivery. Whether or not you choose to create a written plan, it’s a good idea to consider the topics covered by a birth plan before you go into labor. Here’s a look at what to include in your birth plan:
- Pain management and medication. Whether you’d like to plan for a natural birth or plan on requesting an epidural the moment it’s available, you can make note of your feelings on pain medication in your birth plan. Learn more about your options for pain medication and management at The Mother Baby Center here.
- Who you want in the delivery room. For some people, having their mom nearby is the greatest comfort in the world. For others, it’s an added stressor. Take a minute to consider who you’d like present for your delivery (just your partner or another support person, a doula you’ve been working with, etc.), and who you’d prefer waits until it’s time to meet baby.
- Delivery and baby’s first moments. Are there certain pushing techniques or positions that you’d like to try—or prefer to avoid? Do you want your partner to cut the cord? In your prenatal appointments at your clinic, discuss with your doctor or midwife what your options are for delivery and what happens immediately after birth—and consider how your preferences may be different in the event of a planned or unplanned C-section.
- Your concerns. If there’s a certain aspect of labor and delivery that you’re particularly nervous about, discussing it with your doctor or midwife can be helpful. You can decide together if there’s something you can add to your birth plan that might help ease your mind.
When to write a birth plan
The third trimester is an especially good time to discuss a birth plan with your provider and support person, but you’re always welcome to ask your doctor or midwife questions that may help inform your birth plan.
How to make a birth plan
Download Allina Health’s birth plan worksheet to guide your conversations with your birth team, and ultimately write up your preferences for labor, if you choose. If you do decide to write up a birth plan, share it with your doctor or midwife, and bring another copy so they can add it to your file.
A birth plan is established with your doctor or midwife during prenatal care appointments at your clinic. The Mother Baby Center is where you will deliver your baby, we do not provide prenatal care. Please talk with your pregnancy care provider or clinic if you have questions about creating a birth plan.