Enveloped by soothing warm water, Malorie Pastor's labor was eased as she soaked in The Valley Hospital's new hydrotherapy tub for expectant mothers. During the one hour that she was in the tub, Malorie says the water relaxed her muscles, allowed her contractions to perform their job, and helped give her the confidence to deliver baby Luci without epidural pain medication or other analgesia.
"Having the option of laboring in the tub was an appealing component of Valley's Center for Holistic Birth, which is something my husband, Joseph, and I sought out for the birth of our first baby," says Malorie, 26.
The Clifton couple was the first to use Valley's new Aqua-EezTM hydrotherapy tub, which is the only one in a Bergen County hospital or childbirth facility. Babies are not delivered in the tub; it is for the Mom's relaxation only.
While in the tub, a woman is accessible on all sides to a nurse, childbirth partner, or other caregiver. The buoyancy of the water and the tub's spacious size allow her to change positions easily. Water reduces the strain on a laboring woman's perineal muscles and increases elasticity to aid in delivering the baby. The tub is completely drained, cleaned, and sanitized after each patient's use.
"Warm baths during labor have been shown to reduce anxiety and pain perception and the use of pain-relieving medications and instrumentation during delivery," points out The Valley Hospital Center for Childbirth's holistic birth coordinator, Heidi Z. Brenner, RN, CNM, AHN-C. "By offering hydrotherapy to our patients, we are utilizing yet another safe, non-interventional method to assist in the birth process."
Malorie's obstetrician, Fred Rezvani, M.D., a strong advocate of Valley's Center for Holistic Birth, delivered Luci about 13 hours after Malorie's labor began.
"My entire childbirth experience was so wonderful that Joseph and I may return to deliver another baby at Valley even though we are moving back to our native Maine soon," says Malorie, who lived in New Jersey while completing a master's degree at Montclair State University.
Valley's Center for Holistic Birth is the only holistic birth program in a northern New Jersey hospital. Using holistic techniques such as therapeutic touch, the hydrotherapy tub, essential oils and other integrative healing therapies specially trained nurses help women labor and deliver their babies within a positive atmosphere, free from anxiety or lengthy confinement in bed. These services are offered at no additional charge to patients of the Center for Childbirth.
For more information, call Heidi Z. Brenner at 201-447-8233.
Malorie Pastor's labor was eased as she soaked in The Valley Hospital's
new hydrotherapy tub for expectant mothers.