When you choose Epworth Maternity, you’re choosing decades of clinical knowledge, hands on experience and people who will care for you and your family, as if you were their own.

When you’re considering who else you would like with you for the birth of your baby, it might be a simple choice. But what if it’s not? You might have a partner, or you might not.

A support person can be a partner, but it might be a family member, friend or combination of these.

Birth Suite Nurse Unit Manager, Nicole Paine, says it’s important that you think carefully about who you’d like with you.

‘It’s important to remember that while our midwives will be there to reassure you, it’s important to keep stress at bay. Stress hormones can actually slow or stall the birthing process,’ Nicole said.

‘When you’re considering who you’d like by your side, ensure there won’t be any tricky dynamics that could hinder your labour. Also, make sure you are making the choice that you are happy with. It is your labour and body and you shouldn’t have to worry about other people during this time.’

‘Once you’ve chosen your support person, why not talk through your birth plan with them, if you have one so they can help advocate your wishes,’ she said.

While they might not be giving birth, there’s still plenty that they can do to support you and help welcome your new baby into the world.

They can:

  • help set up an environment that is comfortable, for example by dimming the lights, setting up music, using aromatherapy, creating a private ‘nesting’ space for you to labour in
  • repeat birthing affirmations to provide support and encouragement
  • provide massage, pressure and physical touch (if that helps)
  • assist with breathing techniques, reminding you of slow, conscious breathing (without ‘coaching’)
  • be a calm, quiet and active presence
  • eliminate distractions - that means screens, too much chatter and phone notifications
  • be your voice by advocating and communicating your preferences with staff in a calm manner and relay any information back to you, between contractions
  • encourage you to rest between contractions and to change positions regularly
  • care for your physical needs providing warm/cold packs, light snacks and fluids
  • not take offence if you can’t be polite.
Epworth Maternity

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A short video series which cover everyday newborn topics like feeding, nappy changing, bathing, dressing and swaddling, plus topics for mums like self-care, exercise, nutrition and partner support.

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