Getting ready to give birth

Whether you need advice on writing a birth plan or what to pack in your hospital bag, we’ll help you - and your birth partner - prepare for labour and meeting your new arrival.

  • Your birth plan

    13 min read

    Writing a birth plan gives midwives, doctors and your birth partner a clear idea of what’s important to you during labour, birth and in the first few hours with your baby.

  • Top tips for birth partners

    7 min read

    Advice on how to prepare for being a birth partner and the best ways you can provide support during labour and birth.

  • Signs of labour

    7 min read

    How do you tell Braxton Hicks contractions from the real deal and what should you do if your waters break? We explain the signs of labour to look out for – and what to do next.

  • What to pack in your hospital bag: the top 10 items for your hospital bag checklist

    6 min read

    Have you packed your hospital bag yet? From sleep suits to baby wipes, our checklist reveals the top 10 most important things to bring with you wherever you choose to give birth.

  • Travelling to the hospital or birth centre in labour

    8 min read

    Planning how you’ll get to the maternity unit during labour – from the route you’ll take to where to find parking – is one part of giving birth you can be prepared for.

  • Stages of labour

    7 min read

    Find out what to expect during the three stages of labour – from how long it can take to be fully dilated to your choices for delivering the placenta after your baby’s been born.

  • What will happen if your baby is breech

    6 min read

    Learn about your birth options if your baby isn’t head down, including the pros and cons of a vaginal breech birth versus an elective c-section, and what’s involved in an ECV.

  • Choosing your birth partner

    7 min read

    Giving birth can be a daunting prospect and having a supportive birth partner can make a big difference to your experience.

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