How long does it take to inflate a Birth Pool in a Box?

It takes 10 minutes to inflate a Birth Pool in a Box using the electric inflate pump provided.

When and how do I fill Birth Pool in a Box?

Fill your pool with the non toxic food grade hose pipe provided (to ensure safety in hygiene) which is connected to your tap with one of the tap connectors provided. Filling time varies widely according to the water supply. It can be as little as 30 minutes from a high pressure continuous-flow boiler or up to 3 hours from a small tank that takes an hour to refill via a boiler. You can place a ClearFit Cover or a clean tarp on top of the water during filling to retain heat.

For a first-time mother, a good guideline is to begin filling when contractions are regular and between 3-4 minutes apart for one hour. For subsequent births, begin filling the birthing pool when contractions are 5 minutes apart. If you have a small water tank that takes a long time to refill, you may want to begin filling as soon as contractions start. If they progress slowly or stop, you can always stop filling.

When do I get in the pool and how do I get in and out of the Pool?

If you are using the birthing pool in your own home, you may get in the birthing pool whenever you like. It may help ease early labour pains. In some cases, however, it might even stop your labour altogether. For the maximum pain relief, get in the birthing pool when you are in active labor: when your contractions are coming every 3-4 minutes and building in intensity (around 2" dilation). Water is not pain relief but it will help you manage the pain better as it enables you to easily move into different positions, thus helping you relax more. For added benefits of water, get out of the pool every 90 minutes or so for a few contractions on land. Then get back in the pool for an extra burst of oxytocin-the hormone that powers labour contractions.

There are two main methods for the mother to enter and exit the pool:

  • Sit on side and swing legs over
  • Step in/out of pool. This flexes the pelvis and can positively affect labour progress.

For either method, the handles can be used for support. The top chamber may be partially deflated to make it easier for women with shorter legs to step over the sides. This can be done without significant loss of height of pool sides.

How do I keep the water warm?

When you are in the birthing pool, you should feel comfortable, but not too warm. In labour, the water should be maintained according to your comfort between 91°F - 98°F. The latest evidence says that the best gauge for temperature of the water is maternal comfort. If she is too hot or too cold, adjust the water accordingly and don't mind so much what the thermometer says. However, for a water birth, the temperature should be 96°F - 98°F or the same temperature as the woman. You can use the thermometer provided to measure the water temperature. Note that temperature measurement is an inexact science and most inexpensive thermometers are accurate at best to +/- 1°F regardless of the number of decimal places they display. The heat loss will be around 1-2°F per hour, depending on the temperature, humidity and air flow in the room. A cover or tarpualin over the pool reduces humidity when the birth pool is not in use. Temperature monitoring every hour and adjusting temperature by removing & adding water can be attended to effectively by the woman's partner without great difficulty. We recommend that you keep a clean bucket handy to empty water before topping it up, if the water level is already at the recommended maximum.

How do I empty the pool?

To empty the pool after baby has been born you use the submersible emptying pump provided in our kit. To do this you push the hose supplied onto the connector on top of the pump, then put the pump into the bottom of the pool and put the end of the hose to an outside drain or down a toilet. Then turn on the pump and the pump will pump out the water in around an hour.

How heavy is Birth Pool in a Box when filled?

The weights of the two pools are as follows:

Pool Size Weight Filled with Water  Weight including mother     Equivalent Number of adults Regular      650 kg / 1430 lbs730 -       770 Kg / 1606 - 1694 lbs               10 - 13

Mini       480 kg / 1056 lbs560 -           600 Kg / 1232 - 1320 lbs                  8 - 10

A solid floor is preferable, or putting the pool in the corner of a room with joists that are rot-free, where there is more support. We cannot guarantee that your floor will support the weight of the birth pool. You may want to get an inspection of your joists and floorboards from a wood preservation company, particularly if your house is old and you have not had such an inspection recently.

What is the risk of puncturing the pool?

You can take common sense precautions to minimise the risk of puncturing Birth Pool in a Box. These include:

  • Remove pool from packaging and leave to stand inside before unfolding. In winter, we recommend 72 hours to bring the whole pool up to room temperature.
  • Keep pets away from the pool, both in storage and when inflated.
  • Prepare the floor where the pool will be, i.e. sand, vacuum, sweep thoroughly to remove sharp objects or surfaces.
  • If the pool is going on a floor that might have jagged edges, be sure to cover the floor with a plastic sheet or cloth first.
  • Take care when handling the pool. We advise against moving the pool between rooms when inflated to avoid unnecessary wear & tear.
  • Remove jewellery prior to using the pool.

In the unlikely event of a puncture, the Birth Pool in a Box is designed with 3 independent air chambers so that if one chamber punctures, 2/3 of the height of the sides remains, causing considerably fewer problems than if a single-chambered pool is punctured.

Are the sides of Birth Pool in a Box firm enough?

The new Birth Pool in a Box has been designed specifically to be firm enough to allow the mother, midwife or partner (max 210 lbs) to sit on the sides while entering/exiting the pools or supporting the birth. The material used is 0.38mm PVC and the seams are bonded using a high-frequency welding process that fuses the two piece of material together as one. To adjust the height of the pool, the middle chamber can be deflated, while the top and bottom chambers can remain firm for the pool's stability

Is Birth Pool in a Box deep enough for a safe birth?

The depth of water in your birth pool is an important consideration, especially if you are planning on giving birth to your baby in the pool. A woman needs at least 18" of water in order for the buoyancy effect of water to benefit her labor. For birth in the pool, it is critical that the baby remain completely underwater until its head is deliberately brought to the surface, hence minimising the potential for the breathe reflex to be stimulated underwater. Both the Regular and Mini size Birth Pool in a Box pools are at least 26" deep internally, plenty deep enough for a safe birth for most women. The water can be within 3" of the rim of the pool with the mother in it therefore the water depth will be 23" (granted there will be some spills with this much water, so get the towels ready). Kiddie pools are usually shallower than this.

The pools can actually be "too deep" when fully inflated, depending on the height of the mother or midwife, so if this is the case for you, simply use the "adjustable height" feature in the pool by deflating the middle chamber so that the total height of the pool is comfortable for both mother and midwife. When the top and bottom chambers are fully inflated, the pool is still stable enough for sitting and leaning, while the middle chamber can be softer for height adjustment.