We use cookies to so our web site can function correctly. By Clicking "OK" or by clicking into any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more visit the cookies section of our privacy policy.

Privacy Statement

A cookie is a small file which asks permission to be placed on your computer's hard drive. Once you agree, the file is added and the cookie helps analyse web traffic or lets you know when you visit a particular site. Cookies allow web applications to respond to you as an individual. The web application can tailor its operations to your needs, likes and dislikes by gathering and remembering information about your preferences.

We use traffic log cookies to identify which pages are being used. This helps us analyse data about web page traffic and improve our website in order to tailor it to customer needs. We only use this information for statistical analysis purposes.

Overall, cookies help us provide you with a better website, by enabling us to monitor which pages you find useful and which you do not. A cookie in no way gives us access to your computer or any information about you, other than the data you choose to share with us.

Cookie group mandatory

(Req)
These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems. They are usually only set in response to actions made by you which amount to a request for services, such as setting your privacy preferences, logging in or filling in forms.
You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not then work. These cookies do not store any personally identifiable information.

These cookies are required

Functional

These cookies allow us to adtertise our products to you and allow us to pass this information on to our trusted third parties so that they can advertise our products to you on our behalf
All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. No personal inforation is shared to third parties. Any personal information collected while using our website could be used for direct marketing from HCA only

Marketing

These cookies allow us to advertise our products to you and allow us to pass this information on to our trusted third parties so that they can advertise our products to you on our behalf
All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. No personal inforation is shared to third parties. Any personal information collected while using our website could be used for direct marketing from HCA only

Performance Cookies

These cookies allow us to know which pages are the most and least popular and see how visitors move around the site.  All information collect is annonomas unless you provide personal information to us.
If you do not allow these cookies we will not know when you have visited our site, and will not be able to monitor its performance.

Health:  Fact vs Fiction - Things only a midwife can tell you 

Anna talks all things birthing in episode 11 of ‘Health Fact vs Fiction,’ as Ellie Cockburn, Midwife at The Portland Hospital, joins her for a chat in the studio to confirm the truths and dispel some of those myths surrounding childbirth.

Listen to Things Only a Midwife Can Tell You now on: 

Apple iTunes

Google playstore

Spotify

Episode 11 - Things only a midwife can tell you

With 40% of babies in the UK being born to first-time mums, it’s understandable a little apprehension may set when it comes to the monumentally life-changing moment that is giving birth. 


Well for starters it’s worth noting, as Ellie informs Anna, that a woman’s waters breaking doesn’t necessarily mean you’re in active labour, and you could actually be sent home from the hospital for at least another 24 hours – one of the more interesting ways to spend the day.


Then of course there’s a couple of the more intriguing ones, such as you should avoid spicy foods when breastfeeding (completely false), and the chance you may poo yourself when having your baby. This one is not only true and completely natural, but also fairly understandable – considering you’re in the rather important process of giving life to a new person!

Listen now

Things we learn in this midwife episode

40% of children born in the UK are born to first-time mums. Going through the final stages of pregnancy can be a daunting process, so on this episode, presenter Anna Richardson calls on midwife Ellie Cockburn, from HCA Healthcare UK’s The Portland Hospital, to have a frank and honest chat about the period between a woman’s waters breaking and leaving the hospital with your baby.

Waters Breaking Fact

Even if your waters have broken, the hospital may send you home. Ellie explains that your waters breaking doesn’t necessarily mean that you are in active labour, so you might get sent home for at least another 24 hours.

Epidural side effects Fiction

An epidural will slow down labour. While that used to be the case, nowadays, epidurals are lighter and provide more mobility, so that mothers can move around during labour a lot more which keeps things moving. 

Breastfeeding what food to avoid Fiction

You should avoid spicy foods when you are breastfeeding. Ellie tells Anna that whilst it can affect the taste of the breastmilk, it can increase the baby’s palate and introduce them to new flavours.

What is active labour Fact

You move into active labour when your cervix is 4 centimetres dilated. Ellie talks Anna through what active labour is and how you can identify it, and how long it will take between your waters breaking and being able to take your new little bundle of joy home.

Pooing whilst giving birth Fact 

I may poo myself when giving birth. Ellie reassures us that although this isn’t a myth, there is nothing to be embarrassed about as it is completely natural.

Skin-on-skin contact after birth Fact

Skin on skin contact helps you bond with your baby. Ellie talks us through some steps for parents to connect with their new-born child.

What to do next

More about maternity care

Pregnancy-yoga-baby-editorial-homepage-654x656

Having your baby at The Portland

Find out more about having your baby at The Portland
Ellie editorial

Ellie Cockburn

Ellie Cockburn is a midwife at The Portland Hospital, part of HCA Healthcare UK.  Ellie studied to become a midwife at London South Bank University, training at Queens Hospital NHS in Romford whilst completing her course.  After qualifying as a Midwife, Ellie remained at the hospital she trained at, working full-time at Queens Hospital NHS in Romford from 2013 to 2017.  


During her time at Queens Hospital, Ellie worked on all wards, including antenatal, triage, high-risk labour, postnatal, birth centre and maternity high dependency unit.

Ellie is passionate about midwifery and loves being able to demonstrate her theoretical knowledge and clinical skills every day.  Ellie really values being part of such an intimate time in a woman's life and wanted to take part in HCA’s Health Fact vs Fiction podcast series 2 in order to share her knowledge and passion for midwifery and childbirth. 

Maternity tour

Book a Tour or attend an Open Day at The Portland Maternity Unit

Are you thinking of having your baby at The Portland Hospital?

Throughout the year we offer a number of Open Days where you can see the maternity facilities and meet our midwives.

If an open day isn't available when you need it, we also offer tours of the maternity unit to help you make your choices about your birthing care.

Contact us

If our podcast topics have inspired you to seek further advice, our team will be happy to make an appointment for you with a consultant. 

Call us on 020 3993 3468
back to top