Midwife 101, what to know and expect
Ask the Expert
So you're thinking about, or you’ve opted for a midwife; what happens next? We talk to Matty Van Oosterom, LMC midwife
How do you choose an LMC?
If you opt for a midwife, the New Zealand College of Midwives have a website: findyourmidwife.co.nz where you can view a profile of midwives. You can search via location, ask questions and engage with them. Book early to ensure you secure your first preference.
What questions should you ask before you choose your LMC?
Look for an LMC that has a similar philosophy about birth and labour as you do. Make sure you discuss what kind of birth you want early on in your pregnancy. Ask whether your LMC offers continuity throughout pregnancy and postnatal periods, and who else will be involved in your care.
How often can you see your LMC?
It’ recommended by the Royal College of Midwives to see your LMC every four weeks until you’re 28 weeks. Once you hit that third trimester, it’s every two weeks. After week 36 it’s every week. Often midwives may see couples more often. It’s dependant on the parent.
What about post-birth / after care?
Your LMC will visit you in the hospital after the birth and then within 24 hours of arriving home. Over the next four to six weeks, your LMC will visit you at least five times, dependant on your ends. The biggest challenge tends to be breastfeeding and transitioning into the new role as mum.
Any additional advice for mum?
Start your maternity leave a minimum of two weeks before baby is born. Spend time at home by yourself to nest. You’re also able to change your LMC at any time, often when baby is born, the partner can feel a bit useless; it’s important for them to support mum. This can be by cooking meals or helping with feeding.
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Questions to ask your LMC
Choosing an LMC is a big part of your parenthood experience and it’s important you feel comfortable with the person you choose, and that you have confidence in them. Midwives and obstetricians will usually be open to meeting and talking with you before you make your final decision.
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