Preparing for birth

Early signs of labour

Discover the early signs of labour, such as Braxton Hicks contractions and mucus plug discharge. Read about symptoms, preparing for birth and when to call your midwife.

Home birth FAQs

There are pros and cons to giving birth at home. Here we answer common questions about the advantages and disadvantages of home birth to help you make an informed decision.

Baby positions in the womb before birth

If your baby is in your pelvis with their head pointing down, facing your back, it can make giving birth easier. Find out more about baby positions in the womb here.

Birthing partners and birth support

Having a birthing partner present can make a woman feel supported in labour, so it is always good to plan ahead. Read about how a birth partner can help in pregnancy.

How do I arrange a home birth?

This article looks at how to arrange a home birth through NHS midwives, your GP or with an independent midwife. They can also help you plan if you are giving birth at home.

Choosing your birthing partner

Birthing partners provide valuable support for pregnant women during labour. You can choose your birth companions from partners, relatives, friends or professionals.

Helping your baby into the best position for birth

This article offers tips on how to get your baby into the best birth position. Which positions help and which should be avoided when trying to turn your baby in the womb?

What happens after your baby is born?

The first hour after delivery of the placenta is known as the fourth stage of labour. We discuss benefits of skin to skin contact after birth and supplementary vitamin k.

Preparation for multiple births

If you are expecting multiple babies, including the possibility of giving birth to twins, there are options to consider. Read about planning for vaginal or caesarean birth.

What do I need for a home birth?

Here we provide information on home birth preparation including the supplies you may need, as well as general advice on using a birth pool.

Breech babies and birth

What happens when you have a breech baby and what can you do to reduce the possibility of a breech birth?

Reasons for caesarean birth

Doctors may recommend an elective or emergency caesarean section (also known as a c-section) in some cases. Read about the reasons and risks, as well as the choices you have.