Birth Centered Around You

12. Birth Center birthing tub waterbirth

The Birth Center at PCC is happy to offer our patients the option to labor and deliver in one of our birthing tubs. Being in the water has many benefits and is a practice supported by the American College of Nurse Midwives and the American Association of Birth Centers.

There are many potential benefits of water labor and water birth, including:

  • Decreased need for pain medication. Women who had a water birth report less pain than women who gave birth in a bed.1,4
  • Promotes relaxation and decreases anxiety, which can help labor become shorter and more efficient.1
  • Buoyancy reduces pressure on the abdomen and stimulates more productive contractions.4
  • Women are more likely to have an intact perineum during a water birth.2
  • Mothers report feeling more in control and more relaxed during a water birth.3
  • Allows for more freedom of movement which facilitates fetal descent through the pelvis.4

Research shows that the rate of infection is not higher in women and babies after labor or birth in water compared to women and babies who did not use water during labor and birth.1

There are some circumstances where laboring or delivering in water is not recommended:

  • Current or untreated vaginal, urinary tract, or skin infection
  • Current maternal fever
  • Unstable vital signs (pulse, respiratory rate, etc.)
  • Chorioamnionitis
  • Heavy meconium
  • Excessive vaginal bleeding
  • History of shoulder dystocia or current suspected fetal macrosomia
  • Current fetal malpresentation

If desired, you can bring a swimsuit top for you to wear in the tub and a swimsuit for your partner so they can be in the tub with you.

Talk to your midwife if you have any questions about using the tub during labor and birth.

1. ACNM (2014) “Using water for labor and birth” Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health. 59(3).
2. (2015) “Evidence on the safety of water birth”
3. Richmond, H (2003) “Women’s experience of water birth” The Practicing Midwife 6(3).