No two women experience labor and delivery in quite the same way, but the more you know about what to expect, the more you can focus on what really matters — the joy of meeting your new baby for the very first time. We want to help you prepare for your delivery day, eliminate any surprises, and help you have a safe and positive experience.
Your hospital can provide you with more information on what to expect and how to prepare for your big day.
Your childbirth preferences plan
Your health and the safety of your baby are always our top priorities. Creating a birth plan is a great way to let your care team know your wishes. It’s not a contract, and you can change your plan at any time.
Many labor, delivery, and recovery rooms offer amenities that include:
- a TV
- free Wi-Fi
- a pull-out bed for your labor support person
- a rocking chair
- a small refrigerator with freezer
Check with your delivery hospital of choice about the number of guests allowed for labor and delivery, visiting hours, and any information to know about visits from new big brothers and sisters and other children.
Ask your delivery hospital about photography guidelines to keep in mind for the memorable occasion.
When you have your baby, you may be surprised at how many people are there to support you — before, during, and after your delivery. Your labor, delivery, and postpartum care team all work together to help give you the happiest, healthiest birth day possible.
First few hours after delivery
When your baby is born, your delivery team will come in to make sure he or she is thriving outside the womb. As long as you and your baby are doing well, you’ll have the option to stay together for the rest of your time in the hospital.
Little ones who need special care are observed in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). A neonatologist — a pediatrician trained especially in newborn care — will let you know if your baby needs care in an NICU. If this happens, the neonatologist will talk to you about why your baby needs extra care, and make sure you know where your baby will be and what to expect.