Pool rooms

 Information about choosing a water birth

Why use the birthing pool?

We have two birthing pools for women who have been assessed as 'low risk' and would like to labour in water.

Water encourages you to relax and can make your contractions seem less painful.  You can use the birthing pools for pain relief once you are about halfway through your labour, as long as there are no contraindications (factors that mean you should not use the birthing pool).

Advantages

Using the birthing pool:

  • increases relaxation
  • reduces your pain
  • reduces pressure on your abdominal muscles
  • provides a gravity-free environment
  • relaxes the perineal tissue (muscle that lies between the bottom part of the vagina and the anus)
  • lowers blood pressure.

Disadvantages

  • We only have two pool rooms, so one may not be available when you want to use it.
  • Using the pool will not take away your pain completely - read more information about coping with pain in labour.

Please note: We cannot book a birthing pool for you to use before you arrive at the hospital. When you are in established labour, please speak to the midwife caring for you if you wish to use one of the pools.

How warm is the water?

The water is kept at a temperature comfortable for you, but not above 37°C (98.6 Fahrenheit). Your temperature will be monitored closely. If you or your baby experience any problems, we will ask you to leave the pool.