Some people like to rent actual birth pools for a set time frame from their midwife, doula, or a birth pool rental company. While this definitely has its advantages, there are many of us who like to go the less expensive route and purchase a kiddie pool to birth in.
I purchased this pool from Amazon for $29.55 for birthing my second baby. So far, it looks like it will meet my needs very well, and it has really great reviews from other home birthers.
So what should you look for in a kiddie pool when you want to use it as a birth pool?
The pool must be deep enough that the water will cover your entire abdomen. If it’s not, that negates one of the main points of having a water birth- helping that uterus relax into its work and bringing more pain relief during contractions! My pool is 24” deep, and that seems sufficient for me to sink down in comfortably.
Make sure that the pool is large enough that you can stretch out to your liking. In mine, I can sit against one wall and stretch my legs out all the way with room to spare.
The walls must be strong & thick enough to support my weight leaning against them- and remember that your husband, midwife, or doula may be leaning against them at some point too. You want to be able to lean into it during a contraction comfortably. The last thing you want is to lean against a pool wall and start spilling your water over the edge!
Testing out the wall strength of my birth pool.
Your birth pool must be comfortable! One thing I really like about mine is that the bottom inflates. It adds a nice layer of padding when I sit or kneel in it. Consider also softness of the walls- I much prefer thick inflatable walls over the stiff walls held in place by water weight. I just think it’s cushier.
This may be more important for some than others. Some may prefer a calm, plain pool in soothing blue or green. My pool has colorful fish & seaweed all over it! While it might be nice to keep things a little tamer, I’m not worried about the design becoming too much of a distraction during labor for me. ;) Still though, if looks matter to you, shop for a different pool that will help you stay in your zone a little better!
Ready to go! Now all we have to do is wait for that baby to come…