Your Birth Team: Who's Important and Why

Have you thought about who you want on your birth team? Do you know what a birth team is?  In short, a birth team is a team of people that you’ve chosen who have your best interests in mind and who will support and advocate for you during the birthing process. We’ve put together a list of individuals that you may want to consider adding to your team! Preparing for new baby can be stressful so we hope to make this preparation period a little bit easier and more fun for you and your partner! Who you pick to put on your birth team greatly influences your birthing experience.

Birth Partner:
Your partner will play a major role in the labor and delivery process also. Birth partners can provide comfort and encouragement for the birthing momma. This person will be your main advocate.

Prenatal Chiropractor:
This person can often be overlooked, but is incredibly vital! The benefits of having a prenatal chiropractor as a member of your pregnancy journey are endless. Moms report lowered discomfort throughout pregnancy (yes, even past 40 weeks!), better sleep, better energy, shorter labor time, and fewer interventions...all from having a great prenatal chiropractor! Additionally, at Chernichky Family Chiropractic, Dr. Kimmie is a trained doula, so you have the benefit of having her be able to provide you with support and guidance from that realm as well!

Who should have a doula? YOU should! (We'll write an entire blog on just that). A doula is important to be that objective third-party who is a part of your pregnancy and birth journey there to support you and advocate for you. While your birth partner is your #1, it's easy for them to become concerned when they see you in pain or when unexpected events or complications arise. A doula will help to be that person who sees birth on a normal basis and can help support both of you through it!

Midwives are a great asset to the birth community, as they tend to have a more naturally-minded and low-intervention style of practice. Limitations exist as to what kinds of procedures midwives can perform, but for a healthy, uncomplicated birth, a midwife is a great natural option for moms during labor!
There are two types of midwives: CPMs (Certified Professional Midwives) and CNMs (Certified Nurse Midwives). 
CPMs: These are midwives who are generally more associated with home births and birth centers. In many states, CPMs do not have "hospital rights" which means that they have no legal authority within a hospital setting. They have acquired their training outside of the medical system, focusing their training, study, and apprenticeship directly on application to midwifery. 
CNMs: These are midwives who have completed their nursing program prior to midwifery training. In many states, CNMs must practice under the license of a medical doctor (as is the case with all other nurse types), and therefore won't be found conducting home births or independent birth centers (although they may be a hospital-directed and run birth centers). 

Prenatal Massage Therapist:
A massage therapist is a great option for helping to reduce any pregnancy discomforts that you may be experiencing.

Child Birth Educators:
If this is your first child, child birth educators will educate you on the birthing process which will empower you and your partner to make decisions related to your and your baby’s health.  Many hospitals offer a variety of birthing classes and topics.

Caregiver for Older Children:
If you have older children you will need to plan on who is going to take care of them while you are in labor and delivering baby.

OB/GYN and Hospital Staff:
If you are choosing to have a hospital birth, you will see your OB/GYN to deliver your baby.  An OB/GYN is a medical doctor who specializes in female reproductive health, pregnancy, and childbirth. Hospital staff that you may see while giving birth in the hospital include, but are not limited to, a labor and delivery nurse, anesthesiologist, and students. Your labor and delivery nurse will be with you from the start to the end of the labor and delivery process checking your progression and monitoring baby. He or she will be your support and be in contact with your OB/GYN as you progress.