While many people think of a baby being born in the hospital with a plethora of doctors and nurses around, that's not always the case. Some people prefer to have an at-home birth where they can be more relaxed. If you're considering this option for the first time, here are some things that you should know.

They're Only Recommended for Certain Patients

Not every mother-to-be should plan for a home birth. Only those with a low-risk pregnancy should consider at-home birthing. These are individuals with no pregnancy issues or chronic medical conditions that could affect their health during the birthing process. It's always a good idea to consult your physician to determine if you make a good candidate for an at-home birth.

You Need to Find a Midwife Well in Advance

When you decide to undergo a home birth, you'll need to get a midwife. This is an individual who is knowledgeable in the birthing process. You can find many midwives by asking your local physician for recommendations. It's a good idea to set up your first appointment with your chosen midwife before you're 10 weeks pregnant. Make sure you choose a midwife that is in your local area as they will need to get to your home quickly when it's time for labor.

Know the Risks

At-home births do come with some increased risks that soon-to-be parents should know about. The risk for perinatal death increases by two when it comes to giving birth at home. In addition, the possibility of serious neurological dysfunction increases threefold when giving birth at home. There are certainly steps that you can take to minimize the risks, but you should know what they are before making your decision to undergo an at-home birth.

Have a Backup Plan

Just because you were set on a home birth originally doesn't mean you can't go to the hospital. It's not unlikely for a mother-to-be to consider going to the hospital after labor pains arise. In some cases, the mother's health condition may deteriorate, and transportation to the hospital may be a necessity. It's important to have a backup plan on how you're going to get to the hospital if something changes.

Making the decision to have a home birth is one that you shouldn't take likely. While it can be more soothing, it can also be more dangerous. You should be aware of the four tips above when determining whether or not you want to undergo a home birth.

Author's Bio: 

Anica is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she's used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica on Twitter @AnicaOaks.