Ok, well, I’ve been in a super bad mood lately (probably hormones coupled with my feeling helpless because of my abs hurting – more on that later…), and so I decided I’d take some time today to get the birthing pool stuff ordered.
Here’s my equipment list:
1. Birth Pool and Liner
2. Accessories to make life easier:
a. Pond pump
b. Lead free garden hose
c. Universal rubber clamp type faucet-hose adapter
d. AC air pump for pool
I’ll go over why I chose each, and where I got them.
1. Birth Pool and Liner
I decided to go ahead and purchase a pool, instead of renting, because the cost to rent was minimum $250 + shipping, and there is a ton of hassle involved in getting back to the supplier one I’m done with it.
After doing some research on pools, I discovered my options were pretty limited. I started on a fellow blogger’s site: http://waitingforbirthdays.blogspot.com/2010/08/choosing-birth-pool.html. She lists the pros and cons of each, as well as prices. This hasn’t been updated since 2010, but – the options are still much the same.
There are basically three categories of birthing pools:
1. Inflatable – specifically for birth
2. Inflatable – for kids
3. Hard sided – specifically for birth
I chose the inflatable type, specifically designed for birthing for a few reasons. First, and probably most important, is the depth of water that each holds. I have read that the deeper the water, the better the relaxation, and the faster everything moves along. I’ve also felt the difference between a bath and a Jacuzzi, and like the Jacuzzi better!
The tallest inflatable kids pool I found was 24″ high (75″ x 70″ x 24″ Swim Center Ocean Reef Pool by Intex). Which only lets you safely fill it to about 20″.
This doesn’t seem very high to me…
Also, I’ve read that labor goes smoother and faster if the mom feels safe and secluded because she’ll make more oxytocin (the feel good hormone that triggers contractions). Oxytocin is produced when you laugh, feel love, and also when you have sex and orgasm (sorry to be graphic, but it’s true!), and your body is naturally better able to do that when the “mood is set.” So, knowing this, I’m thinking a kiddy pool would actually stop the Oxytocin flow, rather than start it!
Since we’re going to the hospital, and not doing a home birth, it’s going to be a little tough to get a hard-sided birth pool into the delivery room. Here’s a picture of unpacking the AquaDoula tub!
Yeah, no thanks! Plus, the AquaDoulas are super expensive… They start at $1200. Again, no thanks!
I also decided I’d like to have a seat in my pool, for chillin’, ya know, between contractions. So, I chose the Mini Birth Pool in a Box. Eco just started including the seats in the mini-pools, so I got lucky there! I don’t need a large pool, because since I’m only laboring in it, it only needs to be large enough for me. The Mini BPIAB also has handles all around the outside, and a cup holder! So, it’s the one.
There she is… You can check out all the specs on it here:
And, I purchased it (including a liner) for $180 + $35 shipping (-$18 for using the MIDWIFE coupon code) at WaterBirth Solutions. Total it was $196 and change! Yay!
I also purchased some accessories to go with it, from Amazon.
2. Accessories to make life easier!
We have a big soft-sided pool that we set up each summer, so I know my way around water pumps and hoses. And, I’m surprised that these sorts of things aren’t included in the “kits” that WaterBirth Solutions sells, but hey, everyone has various levels of savvy when it comes to this kind of stuff, so I can understand. However, being an electrical engineer helps me know what I need and want, and how to get it!
So… I knew I wanted to have the ability to adjust the temperature of my birth pool throughout labor, so I’d need a way to drain and fill pretty easily. Enter accessories!
I chose to get a universal fitting with rubber and a clamp to connect to the faucet to the hose because if you note in my previous post about Union Hospital (http://wp.me/p3orQ0-3y), the faucet doesn’t unscrew like the one in your kitchen, and I’d have to get the maintenance guy to come take it apart. If we have limited time, I’d like to eliminate this step by just getting a different adapter. We’ll have to go try it out, to make sure it fits beforehand. But here is the one I found:
Now… to fill and drain, we’re going to need a hose, of course. So, I picked the cheapest 50′ lead-free hose I could find (on Amazon). I want lead-free because it’s safer, and I assume the production process will be a little cleaner for this type of hose. The lead-free ones are primarily advertised as “drinking water” hoses.
My plan is to cut in half and use one side to fill, and the other side to drain.
I am also getting a pond pump so it will be easy to drain, and change the temperature. All I have to do is plug in the pump, drain out the cooled water, and turn on the faucet to give me more hot water! I think my husband will be able to handle that. 🙂
I chose a cheap one that had good ratings and a filter. Pond pumps are nice because they’re submersible, and usually come with different fittings. This one:
comes with 3/4″, 1/2″, and 3/8″ fittings. We’ll use the 1/2″ or 3/8″ one for the hose I got. This was $17 on Amazon.
And, last but not least, I scored a $4 AC air pump from Aldi a couple weeks ago to pump up the pool.
So, the total for accessories was about $75 after it was all said and done. And, most of this stuff, I’ll be able to use for our pool next summer!
Now to pack my hospital bag!