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Dad to be - Points to Know

By Debra Aspinall Subscribe to RSS | July 5th 2012 | Views:
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Isn’t it mums that need a childbirth plan? Of course – but if you want to be involved at this most precious time, you need to be prepared too. A little knowledge goes a long way in preventing surprises that leave you floundering.

Be a swot

First time around, it’s not easy to know what to expect. Listen when your partner talks about labour, look at any books, articles or websites that explain the steps, and note where you come in.

Action man

You need to be practical. How will you get her to hospital? You don’t want to find the car is out of petrol, or you don’t know the route, or you’ve lost the taxi company’s number.

Get me to the ward on time

When to get going to hospital? Too early and you’ll either be sent home (demoralising) or end up hanging around for hours. Leave it too late, and all those nightmare scenarios with babies born onto the kitchen floor just might come true. Timing needs to be just right. Get in gear when:

- her waters break

- she talks of persistent lower back pain with cramp-like sensations

- contractions begin. This isn’t a precise science. Many women experience ‘practice’ (Braxton Hicks) contractions days before true labour begins.

Contractions to act on occur at regular intervals, become more frequent, and get longer and stronger. Time a contraction from the start of one contraction to the start of the next. Set off to the hospital once contractions are five minutes apart and last more than a minute.

Cool and collected

It’s a woman’s world in that delivery room. You may feel like a spare part, but you can play a significant role for your partner and not just with encouragement. She may like her back rubbed, a damp flannel brought, music played or turned off, a drink, help with her breathing regime. If you’d planned to take photos, or to ask to cut the cord, don’t forget to do so.

She’s grateful really…

Don’t be surprised if in all the hard work, frustration and endless ‘labour’ of childbirth, you as her nearest and dearest become the one on whom she dumps all the emotion. She might swear and complain, but will be grateful that you’re there at her side.

A whole new life

It’s over and baby has arrived. A busy and exciting time lies ahead, but first, the new mum still need caring for. She’s tired and needs rest – make sure visitors don’t stay too long. She may be hungry soon after childbirth, so you may need to provide food. Some mums feel shivery, so make her warm and comfortable.

Play your part

Mum’s role is key. Baby is the star. But Dad’s supporting role can make the whole event so much easier for mum, as well as starting off this amazing new relationship in the best possible way.

Debra Aspinall - About Author:
Debra Aspinall is an experienced journalist and the editor and leading writer for the Emma’s Diary website, one of the UKs foremost pregnancy and baby websites. She writes on pregnancy, early pregnancy symptoms, early sign of pregnancy, baby and pregnancy and etc. If you are searching for free baby stuff, please visit us at Emmasdiary.co.uk.

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