water birth Mama's quick questions - what if hot water heater only fills tub once? - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-31-2009, 04:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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At what point did you get in the tub?
How long would you say you stayed in the tub? (if you delivered there?)
What if your hot water heater only fills your tub/birth pool once before there is no hot water left?

I did a test run last night of our water heater and oversized garden tub (I wanted to make sure I'd have space to birth and move around which worked well). But I drained the hot water heater after filling the tub. (I will say that I like a hot hot bath right now) but I know the temp will not be as hot as when I'm in labor since the weather will be warmer and it's not good for baby.
Did anyone else encounter this and how did you get around this issue?

Thanks so much!

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Old 03-31-2009, 04:39 PM
 
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The hot water heater will fill back up again. In the mean time you can boil water and add it to the water in the tub. Or use a tea pot to add some water in. The thing is you don't drain the pool/tub each time. You just top it off with hot water. So even if you drain the hot water heater you don't have to wait till its full again to use it. You will only need a little to top it off. If it doesn't happen quick enough you can use the tea pot or boiled water.

Did you do anything like laundry on hot, dishes in the dish washer before hand? Cause I know I can bath all 7 of my kids and take a shower myself and not run out of hot water. You might have a small hot water heater.

Typically you don't get into the water till active labor. How long into labor that is depends on the persons labor. How long they stay in depends on the persons labor as well. I have gotten in, waited a few contractions, decided it wasn't going to work and got back out. I have gotten in, had to push after a few min and delivered in less than 10. I have gotten in and stayed in for hours. It really depends on the labor.

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Old 03-31-2009, 04:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Full Heart View Post
The hot water heater will fill back up again. In the mean time you can boil water and add it to the water in the tub. Or use a tea pot to add some water in. The thing is you don't drain the pool/tub each time. You just top it off with hot water. So even if you drain the hot water heater you don't have to wait till its full again to use it. You will only need a little to top it off. If it doesn't happen quick enough you can use the tea pot or boiled water.

Did you do anything like laundry on hot, dishes in the dish washer before hand? Cause I know I can bath all 7 of my kids and take a shower myself and not run out of hot water. You might have a small hot water heater.

Typically you don't get into the water till active labor. How long into labor that is depends on the persons labor. How long they stay in depends on the persons labor as well. I have gotten in, waited a few contractions, decided it wasn't going to work and got back out. I have gotten in, had to push after a few min and delivered in less than 10. I have gotten in and stayed in for hours. It really depends on the labor.
No I didn't do anything before. (We have only a 50 gal hot water heater).
Good to know about not emptying the water and just adding more. Makes total sense!
Thanks for taking the time!

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Old 03-31-2009, 06:09 PM
 
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I need two tanks of my hot water heater to fill up my tub. I get in if I want to while waiting for it to fill up again or add hot water from the stove. It works out in the end.

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Old 03-31-2009, 06:59 PM
 
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You also may want to check what temp it is on and turn it up when the time gets closer.

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Old 03-31-2009, 09:54 PM
 
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My Dh filled the tub half way when we knew it was finally starting (my water had broken hours before) and then we covered it with a blanket to keep the heat in. Then when I actually wanted to get in it we only had to fill it the other half. Every once in a while they'd siphon off some and replace it, but I never thought the water was too cold at any point.

I do remember wanting to get in the shower, but not wanting to use up all the hot water and decided just to fill the tub the rest of the way instead. I never got a vag exam till I had been in the tub for a while and started pushing the first time, but I'd been laboring for a while before I got in and felt like it was time for something extra.

ETA: I stayed in pretty much the rest of my labor, with trips to the bathroom interspersed. I'd labor on the toilet for a bit then get back in the water.

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Old 04-01-2009, 01:53 AM
 
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We just added pots of boiled water to the tub as requested by me. I was in the tub nearly all my active labor with my daughter. I only got out once to pee. It really helped my back labor. But; as others have stated, you may be getting out and back in several times depending on your labor and your preferences

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Old 04-08-2009, 02:23 PM
 
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I recently read about a beautiful solution to the hot water heater dilemma, a livestock bucket heater.

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Old 04-08-2009, 04:18 PM
 
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the livestock thing scares me! maybe I'm a total dork.. but when I read about it aq few weeks ago it just sounded so dangerous. (I have a serious phobia of being burned or someone around me being burned after I had a bad burn as a young child)

how hot does it get? and if it can boil water, how bad a burn could you get if you accidentally touched it? I certianly wouldn't want any children nearby.

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Old 04-09-2009, 10:37 PM
 
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You don't put the bucket heater in the pool--you put it in a 5 gallon bucket to heat supplemental water. I'll update how it works once I get around to finding where in our garage it is.

I guess you'd want to be sure you don't have an unsupervised young child playing with the bucket heater--but hopefully you'll have someone to watch the kids while you're in labor anyway.
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Old 04-10-2009, 04:29 AM
 
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I was just wondering over this issue myself, so I was happy to see this thread!

Is it silly that I was pondering over how well an aquarium heater would work to keep the water warm in the birth tub? I don't like cold water, even for swimming in hot weather. Warm and cozy is perfect for me and I think it might be even more so while I'm in labor.
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Old 04-11-2009, 10:23 PM
 
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I thought all birthing tubs have a heater built into the side. It is a waterbed heater that keeps the water warm.

I will giving birth in Aug in Wisconsin (hot and HUMID) with no AC in the house so not sure how hot I will want to water to be anyway!!!

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Old 04-13-2009, 12:13 PM
 
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As far as water temp goes, my midwife wanted us to keep the water temp at around 98-99 degrees (normal body temp). I believe this is what Michel Odent recommends, and I've seen it in other waterbirth info as well. Does anyone know what the thought is behind keeping it so warm? I'm sure I knew this at one point but the exact logic is escaping me now.

I have seen the videos of babes born into the Black Sea, and they seem to do fine---and the water can't be that warm.

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Old 04-13-2009, 12:35 PM
 
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When I had a waterbirth I stayed in the tub for about 4-5 hours or so. Our water heater wouldn't quite fill the pool once. It wasn't really a problem. My husband kept water boiling on the stove and when I needed it warmed a touch then he would take a bucket out and throw in a pot of hot water from the stove. I am sure our waterheater recovered in that time, but I think he just got used to using the stove and forgot to recheck to see if he could use the water from the tap.

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Old 04-13-2009, 12:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by jennyfah View Post
As far as water temp goes, my midwife wanted us to keep the water temp at around 98-99 degrees (normal body temp). I believe this is what Michel Odent recommends, and I've seen it in other waterbirth info as well. Does anyone know what the thought is behind keeping it so warm? I'm sure I knew this at one point but the exact logic is escaping me now.

I have seen the videos of babes born into the Black Sea, and they seem to do fine---and the water can't be that warm.
I am trying to pull this from memory because my textbook is in my trunk and I am too lazy to go out and get it

I think one of the concerns with water too cold was that of a possible placental abruption (I think it would have to be REALLY cold, like no mother would WANT to stay in and birth in that temperature kind of cold). I think what most people think about though is how cold the water would seem for the baby. There tends to be a lot of stress on keeping babies really warm after birth, so cool-ish water doesn't fit with that idea very well.

I have seen those Black Sea videos too... I would bet that would be colder than I would want to birth in, but more power to them

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Old 04-13-2009, 01:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Scarlet_Redhead View Post
I thought all birthing tubs have a heater built into the side. It is a waterbed heater that keeps the water warm.

I will giving birth in Aug in Wisconsin (hot and HUMID) with no AC in the house so not sure how hot I will want to water to be anyway!!!
Actually most don't. Esp if you are just using an inflatable pool.

I have given birth in AZ in the middle of summer when it was 120 and I still wanted the water warm. Not hot, but warm. It was like I wanted the warm on my back and a cool wash cloth on my head. One time I was actually walking around with a heating pad on my back. Heat can be really nice in labor.

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Old 04-14-2009, 07:53 PM
 
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We have a really small hot water heater and I was concerned about this too, esp. with a winter baby. But actually, the water stayed toasty b/c we covered it with a reflective tarp and some silver emergency blankets.

My labor started about 7 at night, we filled the tub around 10 but I didn't even get in it until about 10 the next morning and the water was still totally warm from the night before - I think someone added a little more hot but the reflective tarp worked great.

Also, I heard a reverse pump to pump out cold is good - someone else might have already said that...

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