Birth Pool & TENS hire

Water and TENS machines are non drug-based pain relief options.

For some they are essential methods of avoiding drugs during labour,
and for others they are a stepping stone before moving on to other options.

Immersion in water is an effective method of managing the physical sensations of your labour and birth

A woman labouring in a birth pool. Caz is providing physical touch over the side of the pool as she rests between contractions.

Why use water in labour?

Movement

Water is physically supportive, allowing you to move around more freely and get into positions you would not be able to get into on dry land.

It supports your back, pelvis and hips, and is particularly useful for those with PGP, back problems or arthritis.

Relaxation

The warmth of the water is incredibly relaxing, which helps with physically feeling less pain (if you are tense, it hurts more).

It also means you produce more oxytocin, the hormone of labour, and more endorphins, the body's natural pain relieving chemicals.

Privacy

The walls of the birth pool are opaque, and so they act as a protective bubble, within which you feel secure, safe and unobserved.

This reduces your adrenaline and increases your oxytocin levels, allowing your body to labour more easily and effectively.

Are there any negatives to using water?

Sometimes water can slow the first stage of labour down. If you feel that may be happening, you can get out again! There is no rule saying you must stay in the pool once you are in it! In fact, it can be beneficial to get in and out of the pool to help the baby move down well into your pelvis.

Some women and birthing people find that the water makes them too hot during labour so they want to get back out again. There is debate about the best temperature for birth pool water to be at but generally, a comfortable temperature for you is best while you are labouring. Your midwives may want to change the temperature to be closer to body temperature as the birth approaches - that is for you to discuss with them.

Using a pool may increase your chance of having a minor tear (or it may not), but it decreases your chance of having a severe tear or episiotomy.

You can read more about the evidence around waterbirth on Evidence Based Birth.

Using TENS in labour

TENS stands for Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation.
It stimulates endorphins, which are the body's natural pain relieving chemicals (imagine the way your headache hurts less when you laugh at something funny). It works best if it is put on during the very early stages of labour, which makes it great for use before getting in a birth pool, which can sometimes slow labour down in the early stages.

A labour TENS machine differs from a regular TENS machine because it has 4 pads rather than 2,
and also has a boost button for use during contractions. There are two different pulse patterns so you can choose the one you like best, and it can attach to your clothes via a clip or be worn around your neck on a lanyard.

Are there any negatives to using a TENS?

Some people absolutely hate the feel of them.

Sometimes you can forget to turn the pulse strength up as your labour progresses.
It is useful to talk with your birth partners about reminding you to check whether it needs turning up at regular points during your labour.

What do you get when you hire a pool from me?

  • A professional grade Birth Pool in a Box pool: either regular or mini size (please check your room size!)
  • 6 weeks hire as standard, from 37-43 weeks, with the option to extend if you have an unexpectedly long pregnancy
  • Delivery to and collection from your home, in and around Bradford, West Yorkshire (please see the map below)
  • Half hour appointments at delivery and collection so that you have ample opportunity to ask questions or talk about your experience
  • Electric pump to inflate and deflate the pool
  • Lid to cover the pool once filled (to keep the heat in if you don't use it for a long period of time)
  • Patch kit, in case of emergencies
  • Tap connectors to fit standard taps (you will need your own if you have unusually shaped or sized taps)
  • Dirty water pump and 10m hose to empty the pool
  • Full instructions on how to inflate, fill, empty and deflate the pool
  • Single User Supplies: a liner for use in the pool, a 10m hose to fill the pool, thermometer, sieve, mirror, anchor
  • A cord tie as a free gift!

Starting from* £100 delivered & collected in the Bradford, West Yorkshire area

*What do you mean, starting from?

Because I deliver and collect all my pools in person and offer half hour delivery and collection appointments, I charge more the further I have to travel to you. You are paying for a top quality personalised doorstep service and complete support through the whole process.

You can see the individual zones further down the page, or click here.

What's the difference between the regular and mini pools?

Just the sizes. The price remains the same regardless of which size you choose so you can choose the one that is most suitable for your body size (note: both pools will accommodate someone 6ft tall) and room space.

Regular Pool

193cm x 165cm, holding 650L water (80% full)
For those who are of a taller stature
For those whose partners wish to join them in the pool
For those who want plenty of space to move around in

Mini Pool

165cm x 145cm, holding 480L water (80% full)
For those who are of a shorter stature
For those who have limited space or hot water
For those who labour quickly and need the pool ready fast

Image of a TENS machine on a table.

And if I'd like a TENS too?

Just tick the box on the booking form. I will bring the TENS machine when I deliver the pool.

When you hire a TENS you get:

  • TENS machine with belt/clothing clip
  • 4 brand new pads
  • 2 sets of batteries
  • full instructions
  • lanyard
  • a storage bag to keep everything together

Additional £15 with pool hire

Is it worth it?

I think so!

If you are planning to give birth at home, choosing to birth in water is a really good option. A lot of homebirthers choose TENS and water as their pain relief and find them to be invaluable during their births. There are also people who choose to give birth at home so that they can be guaranteed the use of a birth pool, as there are a limited number of pools at hospital.

I have done my utmost to make the process as streamlined as possible.
My aim is to reduce any stress you may feel in the run up to your birth, and I am always on hand to answer any questions you may have.

A couple of helpful comments...

Having the water birth helped with the pain of my osteoarthritis.

Starfish logo

Amy

2015

Efficient and good value service. Really friendly.

Starfish logo

Rachael

2020

Everything that's needed is all included. Such a fantastic experience.

Starfish logo

Stacey

2020

If you have booked a Freyja, Ilithyia or Ziva birth doula package then the pool hire is free and you will only be charged for the Single User Supplies. I will bring everything when we meet in late pregnancy.

What are the next steps?

You will need to contact me directly to check whether I have a pool available for you to hire around your EDD. Sometimes pools come back earlier than expected and this can sometimes mean an extra slot opening up. If you would like to be put on a waiting list and/or have some flexibility in terms of the delivery date, please let me know.

The banner below is a guide but is updated manually, so may not represent the most recent booking numbers.

Availability last updated on Saturday 14th November 2020

3 early/mid December slots - 4 late December slots

You will need to complete the booking form and read the T&Cs. To confirm your booking you will need to send a deposit payment of £20 which is made via a PayPal payment during the booking process. You do not need to have a PayPal account in order to complete the payment.

Check pool availability here ->

The remaining balance is due before or when I deliver the pool at approximately 37 weeks gestation. In a half hour delivery appointment I will take you through the box contents, give you instructions on storing the pool, doing a trial run and using the pool on the day, and answer any questions you may have.

At a convenient time after your birth you can ring or message me to let me know that the pool can be collected. I aim to collect the pool within a day or so after you have given birth so that you can have your house back and get on with enjoying your babymoon.

A note on refunds: I understand that birth is unpredictable and you may
end up not giving birth in the pool for some reason. If the Single User Supplies are returned unopened then you will be entitled to a partial refund.

Do you cover my area and how much does it cost?

I provide a personal delivery and collection service, complete with half hour appointments at delivery and collection times. Therefore I am only able to offer pool hire in my local area, and I charge more depending on how far I have to travel to you. Please consult the map below.

Zone 1 - £100 (light pink)

BD1, BD2, BD3, BD4, BD5, BD6, BD7, BD8, BD9, BD10, BD11, BD12, BD14, BD18, BD19, LS28

Zone 2 - £115 (purple)

BD13, BD15, BD16, BD17, HX1, HX3, HD6, WF15, WF16, WF17, LS1, LS2, LS3, LS4, LS5, LS11, LS12, LS13, LS18, LS19, LS20, LS27

Zone 3 - £130 (hot pink)

BD20, BD21, BD22, HX2, HX4, HX5, HX6, HX7, HD1, HD2, HD3, HD5, WF1, WF2, WF3, WF5, WF6, WF12, WF13, WF14, LS6, LS7, LS8, LS9, LS10, LS14, LS15, LS16, LS17,LS21, LS26, LS29

Zone 4 - doula clients only (grey)

Pool hire only available for doula clients

You can click on the map to open it and zoom in.
For more clarification on whether I cover your area, please contact me.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. Birth is unpredictable, and sometimes pools come back in earlier than expected and this may mean an extra slot opens up. However, there is no guarantee that being put on the waiting list will mean you will definitely get a pool.

If you are on the waiting list then the booking does not proceed until I can guarantee you a pool. That way you are not risking losing any money.

Absolutely,if you book early enough!

If you would like to organise a payment plan over several months just let me know when you book. So long as the deposit is paid at booking and the balance is fully paid by the time you are 37 weeks gestation you can split the payments however you like.

I also accept payments from friends and family on your behalf. A birth pool is a great gift!

You can, if you want to. I supply food safe hosepipe because garden hosepipe is treated with chemicals to help prevent mildew. Even if you use your own hose I will still supply a brand new hosepipe as part of the hire. It is always your choice what supplies to use though.

Both the filling hosepipe and the emptying hosepipe are 10 meters long. I recommend you measure the distance from your planned pool location to your tap.

It is possible to request a 15 meter long hosepipe, but I require two weeks' notice to do so.

If you have unusually shaped taps - for example, one with a flow adjuster or one that extends - then you will need to source your own tap connector. I only carry tap connectors for "bog standard" taps.

You may also choose to get a large floor covering to protect against water splashes. I would suggest waterproof tablecloth off the roll from somewhere like Dunelm, placed upside down. Dustsheets are another option, but shower curtains are not ideal as they are often only water-resistent, not completely water-proof.

Standard pool hire is 37-43 weeks. If you are expecting a long pregnancy please let me know when you book so that I can schedule in a longer hire period.

If you are approaching 43 weeks and planning to keep waiting, please let me know you need an extension and I will do my best to accomodate you.

About 10 minutes with the provided electric inflation pump. You should start at the bottom and work up, and fill the rings until they are firm.

This depends on your water pressure, the way your water is heated (combi boilers that heat the water on the go take less time than immersion heaters), and whether you have chosen the mini or regular pool size.

However, it is typically in the region of 45-75 minutes.

Do note that you do not have to wait until the pool is completely full to get in it - you can get in and continue filling it. Generally you would want the water to be high enough to cover your bump.

To best answer this question, I suggest you read this page for information about birth doulas and this page for information about postpartum doulas. If you feel like you might like some more information or support during your pregnancy, but not for the birth itself, then this page on antenatal support, including pregnancy education, may be useful for you.