As Bianca King enters her ninth month and final stretch of pregnancy, the soon-to-be first-time mom is set on her birth plan.
"I have a doula and a private midwife for a home birth," Bianca said in her Instagram stories as a response to an "Ask Me" question.
"I think all women should have a doula," the actress pointed out. "A doula is a non medical support person who provides mental, emotional and physical support before, during and after birth. They help with labour and birth education too."
(Read here for more on what a doula does and why you should get one.)
Bianca, who's based in Australia with her husband Ralph Wintle, then explained, "A midwife is a medical support person who does your prenatal check ups, assists in the birth, and post natal check ups."
(Read here on the work and life of a Filipino midwife.)
Bianca also said, "I have posts on my feed and highlights about my birth preferences. It's hands off, as natural as possible, active labour, hypnobirthing and water birth at home."
(Read here about the nine conditions you must NOT have if you want a water birth.)
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How to create your own birth plan
A birth plan is your labor manifesto that contains details of your preferences when you deliver your baby.
It's the document you want to make sure your birthing team (ob-gyn, pediatrician, anesthesiologist, nurses, and other medical staff or the midwife and doula) knows—and everyone is on board. Meaning, they will support you with your choice. It also serves as a guide to your immediate family and the household help.
Your birth plan should include:
1. Your details
Aside from personal info, include the name of your physician and the hospital you intend to give birth. Include also the name and contact details your next of kin.
2. Your companion's details
While many women prefer to be with their husbands or partners, there are those who opt to have their doulas by their side. Make sure to write down your chosen companion's personal details.
3. Labor preferences
List down whatever it is that you think would make you feel most comfortable.
4. Pain management
Not all women dread the pain that comes with childbirth, so they prefer not to be given an epidural or other pain medication. Others may need it, though they already prepared for a drug-free labor. Whatever your choice, it should be listed in your birth plan.
5. Delivery preferences
The most popular ways to give birth are vaginal (or "normal") and C-section, but more women are now also considering water births. There are now birthing homes to cater to this type of childbirth and some hospitals have also set up facilities for water birth.
6. Infant care
This refers to your preferences as soon as your newborn comes out of your womb, including breastfeeding him and rooming him in.
Read here for tips on preparing of childbirth.