If you're considering water birth but is still on the fences because of the risks, this might help you finally decide.
Makati Medical Center has transformed one of its birthing suites into a water birthing facility. And based on the above photo alone, infections will be the last thing on your mind. It looks calming and more importantly comforting, an important aspect given all the worries we have about childbirth. (Moms-to-be to can also play her choice of music although it may probably be the last thing on your mind.)
The Water Immersion Facility for Labor and Delivery allows a maximum of three companions to support the mom-to-be in her birthing journey. The cost is roughly the same as a normal simultaneous delivery in a birthing suite, around P100,000 to P120,000. Yes, the the money you'd normally shell out for an anesthesiologost, pain medication, needles, etc., covers just the cost of the water birth room. This ballpark figure does not cover any complications that may arise.
Of course, it's hard to put a price tag on peace of mind. And it's what you get when you have your childbirth in a big hospital like Makati Med. Doctors and nurses will be available to the birthing mother, as well as surgical/operating room facilities. Plus multi-specialty physicians are on standby in case of emergencies.
Of course, choosing where to have your water birth comes after you've mentally prepared yourself for this birth plan. You've seen photos and video of moms submerged in a pool of water as they labor and deliver their baby. But you should also read the updated statements of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Both groups have been more open about water birth, as long as the women are healthy and they have no pregnancy complications. (Click here to check if you are eligible).
What are the perks of water birth?
Water births provide natural pain relief. Immersion in water during the first stage of labor has been linked to shortened labor period and less pain. The warm water is also more soothing and comforting for both mother and baby.
Birth pools allow for free movement. A pregnant woman is free to assume any labor position in a birth pool. She can get more comfortable compared to being in a regular labor room where she might me confined to the bed.
Immersion in water helps ease natural birth. Water can make the mom-to-be's perineum more elastic and relaxed. It could prevent tearing or reduced severity, lessening the need for stitches down there.
As with any other procedure, it also entails some risks such as infection for both the mother and baby. It is why cleanliness is a priority. Issues with the infant's body temperature regulation could also arise. The tub's water temperature should be 35 to 37 degrees Celsius, about the same temperature as the amniotic fluids. There is also the risk of umbilical cord rupture, which can lead to hemorrhaging and shock.
These risks are the main reasons why some preggos opt to do a water birth in a hospital. (Aside from Makati Medical Center, St. Luke's Global City also offers a water birthing suite.)
If cost is a top consideration for you, it's still cheaper to give birth sans the deluxe birthing suites. Wherever you decide, delivering via water birth could be an empowering moment you can share with you family and your child in the future.
Are you leaning towards having a water birth? Or did you deliver via water birth here? Share with us your story; send us a message on Facebook.
Makati Medical Center's Water Immersion Facility for Labor and Delivery is located at CP Manahan Pavilion, OR-DR Complex, 5F Tower 2, #2 Amorsolo Street Legaspi Village,Makati City. For more information, call (02) 888.8999 locals 3500 and 3501