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Water birth

Asante Ashland Community Hospital supports a cherished, personalized birth experience by offering gentle, relaxed water births for people with low-risk pregnancies.

In a private, calming room in our birth center, you may labor and can relax in a large whirlpool tub filled with warm water (between 95 and 100 degrees). During delivery, the newborn is raised to the surface immediately and bonding begins in the bath. Our specially designed room also allows partners to participate in the experience.

Asante Ashland water birth room

A whirlpool tub can ease delivery.

Giving birth in water

  • Provides significant pain relief. The warm, deep bath helps absorb labor contractions and reduces sensory stimulation.
  • May speed up labor. The water’s relaxing effect reduces stress-related hormones that can raise blood pressure and inhibit labor.
  • Increases comfort and movement. Natural buoyancy allows you to change positions more easily, making labor less tiring. Movement helps open the pelvis for the baby’s descent.
  • Reduces complications and medications. In some cases, water birth lessens the likelihood of perineal trauma (tearing). It also reduces the need for analgesics or painkillers.

Is water birth safe?

Yes. A number of physiological mechanisms and inhibitory factors prevent the baby from inhaling until they are lifted into the air and onto the chest above the water level.

Research has shown there is no greater chance of infection than a normal birth, since bath water does not travel into the vagina. Birth center staff members follow strict protocols for maintaining a clean environment.

What if I change my mind about water birth?

That’s perfectly fine. Some laboring people use the whirlpool only for relaxation and pain relief during labor. Our team is here to support your safe birth method of choice.

To learn more about water birth, ask your provider or call (541) 201-4210.