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Dad's Guide to Hospital Birth


Updated February 14, 2014

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Dads and C-Sections
Dad - C-section

Dads are usually allowed to go to the operating room in case of a c-section birth.

Photo © iStockphoto
In most cases, dad can stay with mom for a c-section birth. The one big exception is for emergencies births or when general anesthesia is used.

Mom will usually be taken to the operating room (OR), while dad waits in the pre-operative area or in the LDR room. A nurse will give him scrubs to change into to be with mom during the surgery. Once everyone is ready, the nurse will take dad into the OR and sit him next to mom's head.

Dad will not be able to see the surgery because of a large screen blocking the view. Mom or dad can ask for a mirror to watch the baby being pulled out. Once the baby is out, the doctor will usually show the baby over the screen quickly and then pass the baby to the nurse to clean off and ensure baby is well.

Once it is determined that the baby is stable, dad can hold the baby. Dad should show the baby to mom, placing the baby cheek to cheek. Dad may even have the doula or a nurse help assist him with getting the baby to nurse. To be able to breastfeed in the OR takes a few sets of hands, but it can be beneficial for the baby to be skin to skin. If mom can't be skin to skin with baby, dad can also try to hold the baby skin to skin.

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