Homebirth "what ifs..."
This is probably the most common question about homebirth. Unfortunately, if it goes beyond what is listed in the other sections of this website, it is also a very technical question which I am not qualified to answer. I am not a midwife, and if you are reading this in preparation for your labor you probably are not either. If this is a question weighing on your mind you have a decision to make. Either you become comfortable with the basic information available to you or you hire an experienced midwife.
Most labors proceed normally and chances are you will not need any advanced information. A good basic preparation is Emergency Childbirth: A Manual by Dr. Gregory White. If you want to get a little more advanced you can read Ina May's Guide to Childbirth. If your questions are still unanswered then you might want to study midwifery textbooks.
A commonly recommended rule of homebirth is to have a backup plan in case of emergency. This plan will include where you will go for help, how you will get there and who will go with you. Whether or not you want to pack an emergency bag to take to a hospital with you is up to you.
In other sections of the Birthing Naturally website you will find information about most aspects of labor.
Comfort Measures can help you learn useful positions and techniques to stay comfortable during your labor. Understanding of course that comfortable is a relative term - some women will have more intense, longer or difficult labors than other women. The goal is not to reach some perfect labor, but to work as effectively as you can with the labor your body needs.
Homebirth Books list a variety of books on the topics of homebirth, natural birth and birth preparation. You may find reading a few of these helps you feel more prepared and able to plan appropriately.
Midwife Directory, a section of the natural childbirth directory, can help you locate a midwife or homebirth practitioner in your area. If there is no one listed locally in the state by state guide, contact the midwifery organizations to find out about services available to you.
Virtual Labor is a fun way to practice your new laboring skills. This simple game lets you try out different options for handling labor challenges.
Labor Progress Guide helps you understand the basic process of labor. It includes information about ways to manage each stage of labor as well as common "mistakes" women make in each stage of labor.
Birth Challenges to help you learn to navigate through a challenging labor. This section discusses some of the more common challenges and several ways they can be handled so you can make the best decisions.