Facebook Pixel

Birthing Equipment: How Bars, Balls and Stools Help Laboring Moms

By HERWriter
Rate This
bars, balls and stools are great birthing equipment for moms in labor JupiterImages/Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock

Birthing mothers may not be aware of the various assistive equipment out there to help ease the pain of childbirth and to help the process along as naturally as possible. Be sure to discuss these options with your obstetrician or midwife.

The Birthing Bar

The birthing bar is an upside-down U-shaped device that attaches to the bed. It is helpful during a squatting birth position. During a contraction, move forward to squat and lean on the bar.

You can also tie a sheet or towel over the top of the bar (crossbar), and then pull back on the sheet or towel as you push. This use is ideal for women who have had an epidural.

The Birthing Stool

The birthing stool is usually made of wood and shaped similar to a toilet. Some have slots cut where hands can grip on either side of the thighs.

Research has shown that mothers seem to lose more blood using this method, but it is unclear whether the amount of blood is actually more than in those births in other positions, or if it is simply that the blood is easier to collect and measure in this position.

The Birthing Ball

The birthing ball is the same kind of ball as that used in physiotherapy. As a birthing assistive device, the birthing ball:

• encourages the natural swaying or rotating motion of the pelvis, allowing the baby to travel more easily through the birth canal and alleviating pain

• supports the perineum preventing the possibility of tearing

• helps keep the baby aligned in the birth canal

• facilitates (through the squatting position) opening of the pelvis

• allows the doula or other birthing support person to massage or apply counterpressure to the back (in a sitting position)

The ball can also be placed on the bed so the mother can kneel and lean over the ball. This position is known to be effective in turning a baby and helping labor along. This is particularly helpful for back labor and with babies presenting posteriorly (facing forward).

The Birthing Pool

The birthing pool is ... well ... a pool. It can be used in home births or hospital births (if the hospital allows it).

Add a CommentComments

There are no comments yet. Be the first one and get the conversation started!

Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy

We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.



Get Email Updates

Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!