Birth

Nothing is more meaningful or sacred than the birth of a baby. The midwives at Alaska Family Health & Birth Center are here to help you and your family prepare for this precious event!

Because of our deep connection to the community and our convenient Fairbanks location, we are honored to assist families from all over the state of Alaska.

Childbirth with low intervention

As midwives, our focus is on low intervention and safety during labor. We believe this focus contributes to good outcomes for both you and your newborn. While the midwives at Alaska Family Health & Birth Center practice low intervention to support each families birthing space and pace, we consider your and your babies health our top priority. This may involve administering interventions appropriate for out of hospital birth performed by our skilled midwives with your informed consent. We are aligned with the ‘Ten Steps of Mother-Friendly Care’ outlined in the Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative. After your child is born we closely monitor both you and your baby while observing the 'golden hour' that optimizes bonding, intimacy and the establishment of a healthy breastfeeding relationship. After baby is 1-2 hours old we provide all immediate newborn care including cutting of the cord, the newborn exam, vitamin K and eye ointment. 

Birth Center

The birth center was built with three state of the art, warm and inviting birth suites. These well-appointed suites are specifically designed for your comfort and safety.

Upon arrival, you can expect:

  • Attentive care to you and your baby throughout labor, birth and after the baby is born
  • Freedom to do what ‘feels right’ for you during labor
  • The option of being mobile, as desired
  • The ability to follow your body’s wisdom regarding food
  • Low-intensity and warm lighting
  • Music (if desired)
  • Access to a birthing tub
  • Exclusive bonding and attachment with your baby immediately following the birth (including delayed cord clamping)
  • Quick access to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital and your pre-established hospital provider in the event of tranfer. The midwife will accompany you to facilitate a smooth transition. 
Natural Birth Fairbanks, North Star Borough, Delta, Salcha, Tok, Nenana

 

Homebirth.

If choosing a home birth, your midwife provides the same support and assistance you would receive at the birth center. We begin preparation during your prenatal visits by thoroughly discussing all of your options. 

 The benefits of homebirth include:

  • Freedom to do what ‘feels right’ for you during labor in the privacy of your own home
  • The midwives come to you, relieving the need to travel in labor or immediatly after birth
  • Attentive care to you and your baby throughout labor, birth, and after the baby is born
  • The ability to follow your body’s wisdom regarding food
  • In the last trimester a midwife will do a home assessment to help you prepare for your homebirth 

Waterbirth

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A full bathtub of warm water is often referred to as a “midwife’s epidural.” Birthing your baby in water is a wonderful, natural way to ease tension and soothe pain. Most mothers choose to have a warm tub available during labor — and more than half of them experience a water birth.

Why choose a water birth and is it safe?

Water birth is a safe, gentle and drug-free way for your baby to enter the world. Your babies fetal heart rate will be intermittently monitored whether you are in or out of the birthing tub.  Your baby easily transitions from your internal warm amniotic fluid to the familiar warm water of the tub before gently reaching the surface, where he or she is instantly supported by your loving hands. 

Your baby’s ‘dive reflex’ will prevent him or her from inhaling water during the short transition from the water to the air. Contact with the air is often a stimulus for taking the first breath, while the body stays warm and supported within the water.

Water-born babies have good muscle tone and respiration, just like babies born into air. Some newborns even love to float and stretch out in the water with mother’s help, creating a powerful bonding moment for both.