Preparing for labor

To do list

 Practice your breathing and relaxation.

 Decide whether you want additional labor support.

  If you've had a Cesarean birth, talk with your health care provider about a vaginal birth after a Cesarean (VBAC).

 Create your birth plan.

  Make your packing list and pack your labor bag and suitcase.

 Learn the best route(s) to the hospital.

 Take a childbirth preparation class, and a class for new siblings, if appropriate. For Abbott Northwestern, United and Mercy Hospitals and St. Francis Medical Center, see Amma Parenting Center. For all other Allina Health hospitals, go to our Find Classes page.

Consider options for professional birth coaches, such as doulas, if you and partner decide to seek labor support aside from your health care team.  

   Take a tour of your hospital's birth center. Ask if your older children can go on the tour with you.

Forms and worksheets

Birth plan worksheet

Labor log worksheet

Labor bag and hospital checklist

The labor companion's quick checklist

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Related resources

Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Beginnings: Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond, seventh edition, ob-ah-90026
First Published: 10/04/2002
Last Reviewed: 12/02/2015

Video series

Mother baby care

A wide variety of videos on topics ranging from labor and delivery to newborn and postpartum care can be found on our Allina Health mother baby care video page.

Giving birth: Managing pain

Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding your baby is available in English, Arabic, Hmong, Russian, Somali and Spanish.

Audio CDs

Guided Imagery for Pregnancy & Birth

Guided imagery for pregnancy and birth

The tracks on the Guided Imagery for pregnancy and birth album will assist you with relaxation, pain control, healing and breastfeeding. Download on CD Baby today!