If you are exploring options on how to have a gentle birth, you have probably heard about waterbirths. So what is it exactly? A waterbirth is just as what its name states: it is delivering your baby in a pool of warm water. Waterbirths have been practiced for centuries, although it has been highly popularized in recent decades. Some families have chosen to have their waterbirths in clinics and hospitals, while others felt more comfortable welcoming their child at home. Either way, being in the water (it can be in the shower too!) while in labor has helped them in managing their pain during labor and delivery.
Understandably, since many famous personalities have recently chosen this method to welcome their little ones earthside, water births have come across as a fad or a trend. But it is far from that! Waterbirth was first reported in a medical journal published in 1805, and increased popularity during the 1980s and 1990s.
The use of water as a form of pain relief during labor is called hydrotherapy and there is a science behind it. In 1983, French physician and hydrotherapy expert Michel Odent confirmed that “the use of labor hydrotherapy aids in relaxation, increasing endorphin release and reducing the perception of pain which enhances uterine activity.” The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists also says that “immersion in water during the first stage of labor may be associated with shorter labor and decreased use of spinal and epidural analgesia and may be offered to healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies.”
As a doula, I have had the privilege of working with excellent doctors and midwives in waterbirths. But remember that the goal of water birthing is not for your child to come out in the water but to help you achieve good pain management, so you can have an unmedicated, gentle birth.
I know that it’s easy to get lost while exploring so we’ve put together a list of people and places who can help you out if waterbirth is an option for you and your family. A quick reminder though that our list is not extensive and is evolving, as we gain more allies in creating opportunities for every family to own their birth stories. Also, please note that while we certainly support your decision to give birth the way you want to, as always, consult your health service provider to weigh whether this is the way to go.
Dr. Bev Ferrer
Bacoor, Cavite and Las Piñas City
Aside from working with her on many occasions, Dra Bev has also assisted with my own VBAC (vaginal birth after caesarean). She has become a household name for families, especially those from the southern side of the metro, wishing to have a gentle birth. Based in Bacoor, Cavite, Dra Bev supports births in Mother and Child Cradle of Health, and is also affiliated with Christ The King Medical Center in Las Piñas. Dra Bev Ferrer’s blog
Contact no: (046) 571 3130
Dr. Karen Ty-Torredes
St. Lukes Medical Center – Global City, Taguig City
I have served in birth teams with Dra Torredes and if the number of patients she has at any given time is an indicator, she clearly knows what she is doing. She is affiliated with St. Lukes Medical Center in BGC, Taguig – a facility that also caters to those wishing to have a waterbirth. You can set an appointment with her through SLMC Global City’s trunkline or through her secretary’s contact number. St. Luke’s Medical Center – Global City SLMC- Global City: (02) 8789 7700 Local 7912
Dra Karen’s secretary: +63 949 945 4773
Dr. Donna Kay Briones-Escuadro
Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija
One of our allies in gentle birthing in the north is Dra. Donna. She runs her own clinic in Cabanatuan City, the Briones-Escuadro Women’s Health Clinic, and her patients have nothing but glowing praises to say about her.
548 National Road, Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija Contact Nos: +63 932 729 8165
Dr. Cecile Francisco-Ordinario
Clinica Antipolo, Taytay, Rizal
One of the best-loved OBGynes in the not-so-far East is Dra Ordinario. She is an advocate of gentle births, VBAC, and is certified in waterbirths. She helps families in Clinica Antipolo in Taytay, Rizal, and also has a wealth of knowledge she gives out in her Facebook page and Tiktok account. Dra. Cecile’s Tiktok account Dra. Cecile’s FB page
Clinica Antipolo Hospital and Wellness Center Tel Nos: (02) 8695-9480 to 87 | (02) 8695-9435
Dr. Ces Estera
Clinica Antipolo, Taytay, Rizal
Another ally from Rizal is Doc Ces Estera. She also serves families wishing to have waterbirths in Clinica Antipolo. Doc Ces gives out valuable information for pregnant families in her FB page and it’s also fun to follow her journey to healthy living.
Contact No. for appointments
at Clinica Antipolo:
+63 915 553 1767
Midwife Aileen Vinoy Marikina Maternity and Lying In Clinic
Ms Aileen Vinoya, a nurse midwife, has assisted with a lot of waterbirths and homebirths and may be familiar to you because she has worked with a lot of famous personalities as part of their birth team. She and her team of midwives at Marikina Maternity and Lying In Clinic (MMLIC) are always ready to help with waterbirths.
43 Paterno cor Gomez st., Marikina City
Contact No: +63 917 629 8544
Shiphrah Birthing Home
Even if you are new to gentle birthing, you have probably heard of Shiphrah Birthing Home. Many families have chosen to have their waterbirths at Shiphrah, and it’s easy to understand why. Professional midwives assist families in a home-like environment, and the belief that every mother is capable is at the core of this facility. They always say, “Kaya mo yan!”
Tel no: (02) 8660 7565
Davao Doula with Doula Tere
Finally, if you are from the southern part of the Philippines and considering a waterbirth, Doula Tere from Davao Doula is just a call away. She helps families with waterbirths and homebirths as well with their ally-doctors and midwives from there.
There you have it. I hope we can expand this list even more. :-) To the waterbirth providers, if we missed your facility, please let us know and we will be happy to get in touch to add you to the list. Moms and Dads, I hope that you will find this information useful as you explore what is best for you and your family when it comes to your birth and delivery. Waterbirth or not, always remember that you are the one in charge of your birth and it is up to you to decide, considering your health and your preferences. Cheers to waterbirths!