WHAT IF THE BABY COMES BEFORE YOU GET TO HOSPITAL OR BEFORE YOUR MIDWIFE ARRIVES
Instructions to the delivering Mum
1. Stay calm! Babies born this way tend to be independent and capable wee souls who arrive quickly, safely and naturally.
2. Stay put! Position yourself on hands and knees or kneel / squat as it's comfortable for you.
3. “Pant” a bit if you can. The whole birthing is going fast, pant breathing will slow the baby down a bit and give you a bit of control as you push it out.
4. If you are on your own dial your midwife or “111”. The operator will send you help. Meanwhile, as the baby delivers himself, pick him up from the shoulders and draw him up through your legs and onto your chest, put him right against your skin and keep him covered and warm until help arrives.
Directions for Supporter
Read above. Remember stay calm, relaxed and together!
1. Throw some towels or newspaper under your partner if there is time.
2. Wash your hands if there is time.
3. As the baby's head arrives check for two things:
(a) is there a cord around the neck? If yes then slip it over the baby's head if you can. If not don't worry the baby will come out and you can untangle him then.
(b) is there a sack of water over the baby? (This is unusual) - If yes, break or tear the sack quickly and clear it away from the baby's mouth and face.
4. DON'T try to pull the baby out. Mum's contractions will send him out. Just be there to catch him.
5. As soon as the baby is born wipe his nose, mouth and face gently with a clean cloth and rub his/her back gently to strengthen his breathing.
6. Hand the baby to Mum and have her hold him against her bare skin with his head slightly down to help clear any mucus from his lungs.
7. Cover Mum and baby together with a warm blanket or duvet. This is VERY important. Allow the baby to breastfeed now.
8. If you haven't done so, now is the time to call for the midwife
9. You do not cut the cord or pull on it. Usually the mother will have a few contractions after 5 -10 minutes and the placenta will come out – just leave it attached to the baby by the cord. You can put it into an ice cream container if you have one handy.
10.Help Mum get a bit more comfortable and wrap the baby (placenta and cord attached) against the Mum and encourage her to breast feed the baby. This helps tighten up the uterus and slow down the bleeding.
Give yourself a minute to catch your breath as you reassure each other, stay together and begin your life as a family. Wait for help to arrive. Don't move to the hospital yourselves. Just keep Mum and baby warm.
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