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In a world where customization is the new norm, it’s no surprise that even things as personal and intimate as childbirth can be tailored to your own personal preference. The childbirth experience should be one that is memorable, and being able to customize your childbirth experience to your liking helps to make it an enjoyable one as well.

Dr. Ghea stresses the importance of having a plan that makes the most sense for you. Each individual mother-to-be has their own unique idea of how they want to experience childbirth. Your thoughts are going to be different than your friend, sister, cousin, co-worker, etc., so it’s crucial that you do not spend your time comparing, because no two birth experiences are alike. Do what feels right for you. Think about what makes you feel most at ease, and what will make you the most comfortable when this life-changing event comes to fruition. It’s also important not to become too invested in your birth plan. That baby inside of you has a mind of its own, and things may not always happen exactly how you wanted or planned. It all comes down to what your baby needs in the moment of childbirth, which may derail your previous plan to make room for a new one.

The American Pregnancy Association outlines how to go about creating your birth plan from scratch, which can be especially helpful if this is your first pregnancy. First and foremost, they recommend keeping a journal where you can write down all of your thoughts, hopes, plans, and ideas for the upcoming birth. According to the American Pregnancy Association, a birth plan is simply a one-page statement with your preferences for the birth of your child. It’s a good idea to give a copy of this plan to everyone involved in the childbirth, i.e., family members, doctors, close friends. This will help everyone understand what you prefer, and allow them to rectify any problems that may occur leading up to the birth. That being said, do not wait until the last minute to come up with your birth plan. With so many things to consider, it’s best to do this early on, and you can always make changes throughout your pregnancy.

Once you’ve started this journal, there are many things to think about. Take the time to research the routine policies and procedures in your birth setting; if there is something you are unsure about or don’t believe in, this is the time to discuss it with your healthcare provider and come up with an alternative option. As much as you may not want to think about it, you should also consider discussing your options should there be any complications during and after childbirth. Consulting with your health care provider is also an important step to make sure the two of you are on the same page, that you are comfortable with their routine, and that they are able to accommodate your wishes and preferences. You can always make an appointment with the labor and birth department of your hospital or birthing center to go over your plan in detail. Another thing to consider is spending time in the room where you’ll be giving birth in order to become more familiar and comfortable with space. This can give you an idea of the things you’ll need to bring with you as well, i.e. extra pillows, blankets.

There are many questions you should ask yourself when creating your birth plan, such as who you want to be present, do you wish to breastfeed immediately after giving birth, and do you prefer a specific position while giving birth. For a full list of recommended questions from the American Pregnancy Association, click here.

In the end, it’s best to always remain positive when creating your birth plan. Your list of ideas should include what you do want versus what you don’t want. Dr. Ghea is ready and willing to discuss your thoughts and concerns, and help you to put together the best birth plan for your individual experience. Visit Westside OB/GYN Group at http://www.2obgyn.com/ to request an appointment with Dr. Ghea, or call (954) 473-2011.

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