Prenatal Appointments are typically held in your home. Prenatals are scheduled once a month until 32 weeks, then twice a month until 36 weeks, and then once weekly until your birth. Each visit allows for a full hour, so there will be lots of time to get to know each other. We offer holistic care to address the physical, nutritional and emotional aspects of your pregnancy. Prenatal time will be spent addressing your questions, fears and hopes as your pregnancy progresses. Visits include routine obstetrical care such as checking your vital signs (pulse, blood pressure, and weight if client does not object), urinalysis (peeing in a cup), measuring uterine growth, assessing fetal position, and listening to your baby’s heart rate. All routine obstetrical testing is offered throughout your pregnancy with informed choice. We will provide you with the information, risks and benefits of each test, take the time to answer any questions you may have and then you decide what is best for you, your pregnancy and your baby.
Labor & Birth We are on-call for your labor and birth and will be ready when you are. While facilitating a safe environment we will also be providing labor support and comfort measures. Our role is to follow your lead, as we believe you instinctively know what is needed for your baby’s birth. Understanding and respecting the importance of your partner’s role, we provide support and privacy to you both as needed. Our labor support varies with each individual client and family and typically includes encouragement, physical support, massage, hydrotherapy, position changes, movement, nutrition and hydration. In our experience, labor unfolds best when interventions are kept to a minimum. Trusting in women’s bodies and abilities to give birth, we facilitate this process with guidance, assurance and support while responding to the individual needs of the birthing mom.
As midwives we believe that mothers deliver their babies, and our role as midwives is assisting them in this powerful process. When it is time for your baby to be born, we may catch your baby or assist you and/or your partner in catching. Ohana Midwives are trained in emergency procedures and bring our equipment to births. This includes oxygen, resuscitation equipment, IV equipment, infant suctioning devices, anti-hemorrhagic medications and suturing equipment. We will also bring our standard equipment for monitoring and for comfort, such as dopplers, fetascopes, herbs, homeopathic remedies, birth stool, birth ball and birth tub.
After the Birth The amazing time after birth is referred to as the Postpartum period. In the immediate postpartum we strive to create a calm atmosphere for your baby to peacefully unfold and transition into this world. Monitoring of mom and baby is done as unobtrusively as possible as the first moments after the baby’s birth are an important bonding time. Cord cutting is delayed. Although interventions are not routine, we are prepared, if needed, to assist baby or mom.
Monitoring of mother and baby’s well being continues while the family becomes acquainted. We stay as long as needed, usually between 2-4 hours after the birth. During this time your baby will be given a comprehensive newborn exam, including baby’s weight and length. Time is given to help establish breastfeeding. We will stay to help you shower, make your bed, clean up, do laundry and make sure you have whatever you want to eat, you’ll have earned it!
Postpartum We love this special time! We are honored to assist new families in their adjustments to life with their new addition! We remain on call for your questions and concerns during this transitional period. One of your midwives will return to your home for postpartum visits at day one, day three and one week, two weeks, four weeks and our last visit at six weeks.
Your last postpartum visit also includes a pap smear and complete pelvic floor evaluation, if desired. Postpartum visits include monitoring mom’s recovery and well- baby exams. We also complete the birth certificate and offer routine newborn testing and medication if desired. Helping with breastfeeding, monitoring weight gain and working through feeding concerns is part of our routine care. As during prenatal care, we will refer you to specialized care as needed.
Although our license in the state limits our care in the postpartum to six through eight weeks, Ohana Midwives offer an additional visit at six months. We have found that women are not always back to normal six weeks after birth. There is no charge for this visit, as we feel it is necessary to address some mom’s emotional or pelvic floor issues that persist after routine care is completed – not to mention that we get to see our babies more often!
Did we mention that we love our postpartum work! Our birth team works hard to meet your needs during this special time. Helping to establish a healthy beginning in a lifelong relationship, we think this is special work. ~Misty Dawn McBride