Giving birth

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.

Tips on encouraging a straightforward birth during labour

To encourage a straightforward birth you can do several things during labour. Find out about positions, dealing with contractions, induction and more.

pregnant woman and partner

Second stage of labour

Read about the second stage of labour, including birthing positions, your cervix being fully dilated at 10cm, your baby ‘bearing down’ and what to do in prolonged labour.

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.

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.

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?

Home birth support - who provides your care?

Midwives usually provide care and support for women who plan a home birth, but there are other options available.

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.

My partner is unsure about home birth

This article discusses how to help your partner feel confident about a home birth if they have uncertainties or concerns about you giving birth at home.

Giving birth by caesarean section: elective and emergency c-sections

Caesarean section (or c-section) is when a baby is delivered by an abdominal operation. Read more about the different types and the effects here.