Everything You Want To Know About Getting A Birth Pool.

Here’s a breakdown of everything you want to know about getting a birth pool.

In this blog, I’ll be covering frequently asked questions, the cost of buying versus hiring, the benefits of birthing in water, what to wear and all the paraphernalia you’ll need.

Basically, all the good stuff!

In the midst of COVID-19, home births have been on the rise and subsequently, lots of women are choosing to birth at home. Most are looking into or considering birthing in water.

If you’re looking to buy a brand new birth pool, these are the two leading UK companies. They typically offer two sizes, one big enough for one and the other big enough for two (in case your partner or children wanted to join you!)

To buy, prices start from £99.95 – £399.95. Please bear in mind you’ll also need extras called “Kits” which include: A hose and attachments, pump and attachments (to inflate & deflate) pool thermometer and liners if wanted. You can buy these items individually or as part of a kit. Remember to add shipping charges too.

Here are two major UK suppliers who offer Buying and Hiring options:

Birth Pool In A Box

La Bassine Birth Pools

Prices to hire a birth pool range from £110 – £125 and most include all the kit plus a brand new liner. Lots of Independent Midwives and Doulas have their own birth pools as part of their packages/services.

Also, it’s worth asking your midwife to check if your local NHS Community hires out birth pools.

Be clear on what’s included and what isn’t. Ask how easy is it to collect/deliver and return?

Here are some UK companies & small business owners who hire out birth pools and extra equipment.

Barefoot Birth Pools

Gentle Births Birthing Pool Hire

Caerphilly Doula – Samantha Gadsden (if you’re in South Wales!)

Bristol Birth Support – Torte Rye

Birth Supplies – Your Birth- Your Way

Another option is to buy a secondhand birth pool from eBay, Facebook Market Place or possibly your local Positive Birth Movement Group. Prices vary from £50 upwards.

Here’s some questions you might have rattling around in your brain:

When and how do I fill the birth pool?
How do I keep the water warm?
How do I empty and clean the pool afterwards? 

It’s always advisable to give your birth pool a test run before you go into labour. This way you and your partner have a good idea of how long it takes to inflate, fill, empty and deflate. This would also be a better time to find out if your pool has a puncture!

What could I wear?

Honestly, the majority of women I’ve photographed and supported in birth have worn zero! However, not everyone feels comfortable being completely naked. Some women choose to wear a t-shirt, vest and tankinis are popular!

What matters most is that you feel comfortable at all times.

Here’s a list of some things to think about purchasing or preparing for your water birth:

  • You’ll need lots of towels

  • Dry clothes for you & baby

  • Tarpaulin to but under the birth pool

  • Thermometer

  • Plenty to drink – Straws are a MUST

  • Small Waterproof Mirror

  • Jug – Great for pouring water over your back

  • A Debris Net (Sieve)

  • Absorbent pads to place around the pool for when you get out

  • Recipe to make Energy Balls for Pregnancy, Labour & Postpartum

  • Affirmations

  • Fairy lights to create an atmosphere

  • Aromatherapy oils and diffuser

  • Milton Sterilising Tablets (to sterilise the pool)

Lastly, here are some benefits I found online via the American Pregnancy Association Web page for you and your baby when birthing in water. (they list all the reasons much better than I could!)

Benefits for Mother:

  • Warm water is soothing, comforting, relaxing.

  • In the later stages of labour, the water has been shown to increase the woman’s energy.

  • The effect of buoyancy lessens a mother’s body weight, allowing free movement and new positioning.

  • Buoyancy promotes more efficient uterine contractions and improved blood circulation resulting in better oxygenation of the uterine muscles, less pain for the mother, and more oxygen for the baby.

  • Immersion in water often helps lower high blood pressure caused by anxiety.

  • The water seems to reduce stress-related hormones, allowing the mother’s body to produce endorphins which serve as pain-inhibitors.

  • Water causes the perineum to become more elastic and relaxed, reducing the incidence and severity of tearing or stitches.

  • As the labouring woman relaxes physically, she’s able to relax mentally with a greater ability to focus on the birth process.

  • Since the water provides a greater sense of privacy, it can reduce inhibitions, anxiety, and fears.

Benefits for Baby:

  • Provides an environment similar to the amniotic sac.

  • Eases the stress of birth, thus increasing reassurance and sense of security.

I hope this has been useful, don’t go anywhere just yet,  I have more…

Now you’re probably left with the dilemma of deciding whether to hire or buy a birth pool! Well, I have some great news I’ve done all the research for you!

Sign up below to get hold of my free download “To Hire or Buy – The Birth Pool Conundrum”