Planning Baby's Birth
A positive birth experience begins with an understanding of the birth process. Exploring your delivery options before creating a birthing plan will help you make the right decisions for you and your family.
Your delivery choices at Lawrence Memorial Hospital include natural childbirth, a full range of pain management options, and cesarean delivery when necessary. It's important to plan for the birth of your child by reviewing your expectations and options with your family and doctor or certified nurse midwife.
At LMH, our C-section rate is well below the state average – a true testament to the quality care we provide, as well as our dedication to your birthing plan. Click on a topic below for more information about birthing plans and other big decisions.
A birthing plan is essential for you as a parent-to-be and offers you the opportunity to think through your options before labor and delivery. A written birth plan outlines your preferences and is a guide for your labor and delivery care team. Plans can be detailed or have only a small list of preferences. Regardless, the health and safety of mother and baby should always be the plan's priority. Ask your doctor or midwife how he or she feels about birthing plans, and develop one together. Write your plan with flexibility in mind, as it may evolve to better meet the needs of you and your baby during labor and delivery. The Family Birthing Center care team will do everything possible to accommodate your needs and wishes.
Use the topic headings below as a starting point for customizing your plan. Or, use these samples.
When you visit the Family Birthing Center at LMH for the preadmission process, you can submit your birthing plan with your paperwork. It will be maintained in your file and available to your care providers when your special day arrives.
Choosing Your Doctor or Midwife
Selecting a trusted provider to deliver your baby is a very personal decision. Your neighbors, friends and family may offer advice on how to choose an obstetrician, midwife, or family practitioner for prenatal care and childbirth. Let the experts at LMH help you make the right choice. Our doctors, certified nurse midwives and nurses designed the Family Birthing Center with you and your baby in mind. Our Level II Special Care Nursery, with 24/7 on-call neonatologists, specializes in the care of premature and full-term infants. Our doctors and midwives specialize in attentive, compassionate care for you and your baby during pregnancy, delivery and beyond.
Choose a doctor who chooses LMH. Our team of the most dedicated OB-GYN physicians, certified nurse midwives and nurses in the region make us the right choice for your baby’s birthday. Learn more by viewing our related providers listing to the right.
Choosing Your Baby's Doctor
Finding a skilled physician to be your baby's doctor is vital to your child's well-being and your peace of mind. You'll be visiting the doctor at least six times the first year alone, so choose one you respect and trust. Begin the search a few months prior to your due date. Call to ensure he or she accepts your insurance and is taking new patients before scheduling an interview. LMH physicians are happy to meet with prospective parents and answer questions regarding pediatric care.
In our area, parents can take their baby to a pediatrician, a doctor who specializes in the care of children. Others prefer a family practitioner who can treat the whole family, from birth to old age. Either one is fine, as long as you feel comfortable and confident about your child's care.
Other Big Decisions
Caution: Big decisions ahead! Since your hospital stay may be brief, your transition home will be easier if you prepare for your baby's arrival well in advance. You want to bring your baby into a safe and loving environment, so consider carefully what changes to make to your home. A few of the decisions you will need to make concerning your baby's care are listed below. Don't worry about the minor details, but do form an overall strategy that includes a "meeting of the minds" between the primary adults in your baby's life.
What to Pack
Because babies have their own arrival schedules, we suggest you have the following items and information packed and ready one month before your due date.
Download My Hospital Checklist.
- Focal point (picture, stuffed animal, photo, etc.)
- Powder, lotion or oil for massage during labor
- Warm socks or slippers
- Lip moisturizer
- Snack for your partner and change for the vending machine
- Items for massage or counter pressure (stress ball, massager, tennis balls in a sock)
- Deck of cards, magazine or book
- CDs or MP3 Player
- DVDs (movies)
- Change of clothing for your partner and possibly a swimsuit for the whirlpool tub
- Camera, camcorder, batteries and film
- Keepsake baby book
- List of phone numbers of family and friends
- PJs and slippers (gowns will be provided in the hospital)
- Nursing bra, exercise bra, or regular bra
- Bra pads
- Personal hygiene items
- Comfy clothing to go home in (should be loose, like an early maternity outfit)
- Journey through Parenthood Information Kit
- Clothing for going home
- Receiving blanket
- Blankets suitable for outside temperatures
- Hat to cover ears
- Car seat
Additional Items to Pack (optional)
- Snacks and/or activity books for siblings
- Favorite pillow
Items Provided for You by Lawrence Memorial Hospital after Delivery:
For mom: sanitary pads, disposable underpants, TUCKS pads
Newborn care supplies: bulb syringe, thermometer, diapers, soap, nightgowns and blankets (to use during the hospital stay)
Please leave large amounts of money and valuables at home.
Healthy Pregnancy Topics
Each trimester brings you closer to the joyous moment you’re anticipating: the birth of your child. Proper prenatal care, exercise and a healthy diet can enhance your journey through pregnancy. If you have health issues that make your pregnancy high risk, our team of skilled and caring professionals are here to support you along your journey, too.