Birthowl’s natural childbirth

It can be helpful to have these items on hand for birth
  • Small bottle of almond, olive or other natural massage-type oil. (For lubrication of any body part, if desired)
  • Underpaddings. Large plastic drop cloths, shower curtains or even trash bags to protect surfaces, covered in old towels, sheets or blankets that can be washed (or thrown away). Some women prefer disposable “chux” pads, they can be purchased in the adult diapering section of your local shop.
  • A copy of the book Emergency Childbirth: A Manual by Dr.Gregory White
  • Some people like to have a stethoscope
  • A camera or video recorder (with film)
  • A pen and paper to jot down times and anything of interest
  • Foods, drinks, teas or tonics for the laboring mama and her support team
  • Videos, toys, art supplies, puzzles, etc. for anxious siblings to discover

An “emergence” kit can be constructed with items that could be grabbed in a hurry or not at all.

  • A pair of scissors, rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide and gauze swabs (or alcohol prep pads) for cleansing them.
  • 2 industrial strength cord clamps (for emergency use only) and a set of gentler cord ties for normal cord procedures. Umbilical tape or dental tape (not floss, the ribbon-like stuff) works well. Braided embroidery floss is a popular choice too.
  • Any bleed stopping remedy the mother has chosen. (Mango Mama posted: Shepherd’s Purse and/or Motherwort tinctures and Bayberry Bark, Cayenne, Shepherd’s Purse and Mistletoe herbs for teas as options)
  • Natural fiber hat for a newborn head (remembering that hir tiny head could be very sore from the molding, those tightly knit “hospital caps” made two of my babies scream in pain). Patterns for creating your own baby hat are here for knitting and crocheting and here for sewing
  • I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the rubber ball suction device as an “emergency item” but I think they are a bad idea for birth, personally. I’d probably stick one in a drawer so no one would think I was negligent for not having it. I can’t imagine ever using it though…
After birth items:

  • Warm towels, blankets, receiving blankets or robes. Some families put towels in a dryer, on a heater, folded around a warm heating pad or in a barely warm oven during labor so they’ll be cozy after birth.
  • A large pan, bowl or bucket for catching the placenta (those ice cream buckets work well).
  • Maxi pads (cloth ones or even towels can work well)
  • Arnica 30x for bruising or pain (mama and perhaps even baby)
  • Pain reliever for after-pains (herbal tinctures, teas or commercial)
  • Eldon card, vaccutainers and syringe for testing baby’s cord blood (once baby is done with it)
  • Calendula tincture, honey for tears or skid marks
  • Diapers and baby clothes
  • A tape measure
  • A scale (if desired. Some families rig up fish scales with a baby blanket or towel and subtract the towel’s weight, some subtract their weight from the reading on the bathroom scale while they hold their infant)
  • Celebratory foods, drinks or items for baby’s very first Birth-day party
Photo by Liz Leighton 

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