Myth-busting: There’s no pain relief at home

Myth: There’s no pain relief available at homebirths

Truth: There’s a variety of pain relief options available for use at home, both natural and pharmacological.

These options are discussed in more detail during your initial chat with the team and during the homebirth advisory appointment.

Many Mums choose to use TENS in during their latent phase or early labour, which they purchase or hire themselves.

Lots of our clients also choose to hire birth pools which can be very effective in supporting labour. In 2019, 133 Mums used pools in their labours. Baths and even showers can also be ways of utilising water in labour.

As a Team, we carry Entonox or “Gas and Air”, which is available for women to use in labour. Many women find this very effective as a next step from using TENS or water.

We can also arrange a prescription of Meptid for women who would like this option. Like Pethidine, Meptid is an Opioid injection but is less strong. It can be very effective in the first stage of labour, particularly during a long latent phase where it can aid rest.

Myth-busting: Is Homebirth just for people who have birthed before?

Homebirth Myth-busting

Question: is homebirth just for people who’ve had a baby before?

Answer:
No. Homebirth can be a suitable option
for any pregnant people having midwifery led care* and has lots of advantages (see https://www.facebook.com/855315194600206/posts/1982972391834475/?d=n for some advantages)

In 2019 32% of our clients were people planning their first birth.

*If you have a more complex situation requiring consultant led or shared care but would still like to explore your birth place options, including birth at home, get in touch with the team. We can arrange a 1-2-1 chat with an experienced midwife and if the situation warrants it a discussion with the named Obstetric Consultant for homebirth

Myth-busting- Is Homebirth Messy?

Question:
Is Homebirth messy?

Answer:
No

We make sure the families under our care feel prepared for their labour and birth. At 36 weeks we will arrange a Homebirth Advisory appointment with you, where we discuss in detail your plans and preferences, and the equipment you might like to use ( read more about equipment and supplies here)

We recommend the use of waterproof coverings such as decorating sheets or shower curtains to protect soft furnishings. Absorbent pads are also advised. Cover with towels or blankets to make this lovely and cosy.

Many of our clients will choose to use a pool for their labour. Use of the pool’s disposable liner and submergible pump makes tidying up very simple.

If you would prefer not to keep your placenta, the homebirth team can take it away and arrange its disposal.

If you have any other questions about home birth or would like further information contact the Surrey Hills Team at rsch.homebirth.referrals@nhs.net

MythBusting #BirthPlaceChoice #Homebirth

#FridayFeedback

Lucy,

I just wanted to say to both you and Kirsty thank you so much for all that you did when baby [redacted] was born.

You helped me have the calm home birth I was hoping for, despite all the extra measures you have to take due to COVID-19. Even having to transfer in afterwards, I felt reassured and supported because you were able to stay with me throughout which I didn’t expect but made it all a lot less scary!

I can’t thank you and the rest of the home birth team, including Laura in the early days, Anna and Emily, enough for everything you have done during my pregnancy and birth.

[redacted]

#NationalHomeBirthDay

Image credit Midwife and artist Christie Higginbotham-Jones for #Nationalahomebirthday 2020

Tomorrow is National Homebirth day.

This year the objectives of the day are to:

▪️Address health and birth inequalities #FiveXMore #ContinuityOfCarer

▪️Build a support next work for homebirth providers

▪️celebrate your positive home birth stories with the #IThank campaign

▪️listen to pregnant people from BAME communities, be their advocates and empower them to make their own birth choices #MyBodyMyBaby

Check out the hashtags #NHBD20 and #NationalHomebirthDay2020 across your social media platforms for posts to inform and inspire.

Team Stats 2019

We are delighted to be able to finally share our 2019 stats with you.

The Surrey Hills Homebirth team work within a continuity caseloading model which means that we continue to care for our clients throughout their childbearing journey, even if plans or place of birth change along the way*

In 2019 we were responsible for the care of 203 pregnant women and their families.

Of these families 32% birthed their first baby, 42% birthed their second, while 26% birthed their third or subsequent baby

92% of our entire caseload experienced a vaginal birth and 82% knew the midwife who was caring for them in labour.

133 (66%) of our caseload used water in labour (hydrotherapy) with 50% (n=101) remaining in the water as they birthed their baby (waterbirth).

We welcomed 99 girls and 104 boys in to the world.

From our original caseload (n=203) 73% (n=148) of families planned to give birth at home with the Surrey Hills team at the onset of established labour. The remaining 55 families (27%) opted for an alternative place of birth. This change in planned place of birth occurred for a number of different reasons including consent to Induction of Labour, the development of situations/conditions which recommended a hospital based birth and moving out of area.

Of the 148 families who planned to give birth at home at the onset of labour 82% achieved their planned birth at home (n=121). 18% (n=27) experienced an in labour transfer to an alternative place of birth, while 3% (n=5) were transferred in the immediate postnatal period.

95% of the clients that birthed at home had a physiological (natural) birth of the placenta with optimal cord clamping.

*please note that there have been some changes to our service in 2020 due to Covid 19 pandemic. Please talk to a team member or read the Covid 19 page for more details

#FridayFeedback

Hello! Just wanted to say a big thank-you to the homebirth team. I was initially really disappointed when I was told that homebirth would not be an option given the current circumstances.

However, after baby arrived safely on Sunday morning I can say that I had the most lovely experience in the hospital.

I was so pleased that Lucy, who had been looking after me throughout pregnancy was available at the hospital to see me through my birth.

The room was so cosy and peaceful, you would have no idea we were in the middle of a pandemic.

Being able to go home and recover so quickly was lovely, but we didn’t feel rushed out the door at all.

I know a lot of homebirth ladies are feeling anxious about the change in plans but all in all, I felt like I had everything I wanted out of a homebirth but in a hospital setting (and no mess in my carpets!).

Surrey Hills Client April 2020

#FridayFeedback

Some of you may be concerned at all of the recent changes within maternity care due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We are delighted to share some feedback posted to the Royal Surrey Maternity Unit’s Facebook page by one of our clients.

“ I will get round to a proper thank you for the homebirth team and all the midwives at RSCH. Planned a homebirth and the wonderful team were absolutely amazing. We were all excited as a family as our boys age 5 and 6 were also keen to see their baby brother born. Plans changed and I was very upset and anxious but Lucy reassured me and was absolutely amazing. I had reduced movements and went into hospital for monitoring and there I was very emotional but the midwives sat and spoke to me and again Lucy reassured me. I was induced and I felt very supported throughout and extremely safe. I was so blessed to get my water birth that I had always wanted and my midwife was again amazing. I hadn’t met her before but she kept me so calm and really looked after me. She answered all my questions and listened to all my wishes, I felt completely respected and once we had our baby Bertie we were given time to bond. Just a short few hours later we were home and the boys met their baby brother. I can’t thank you enough for bringing our baby Bertie into the world safely and taking such good care of us both. I had such an enjoyable birth and the care afterwards was second to none! We hope you all stay safe and we will be bringing some gifts your way when it is safe to do so.” Surrey Hills Client March 2020