Today’s Labor Tool Feature is a simple item which we think is a must of all labor tool bags. It is both effective in providing comfort and super cost effective too.

A fan is compact, lightweight and free through our link below. Once you have been admitted to the hospital or birth center in labor, unpack your tool bag.You will be able to see all of your tools including your fan and because of this, you will be more likely to use them.

Fan Type: We suggest a handheld plastic fan or a paper fan. Our second choice would be a battery-operated fan. While this is easy to use, it can cause some unwanted noise and requires that you make sure your batteries are fresh.

Price: For a limited time, we are offering a free plastic hand fan through this link.

When to Use: Anytime your partner is getting hot in labor is a time to use the fan. But, don’t ask if she wants to be fanned. Simply grab your fan and gently start to fan her face. Keep about a 2 foot distance between your fan and her partner’s face. This is enough that she feels the comforting breeze from the fan, but shouldn’t be annoyingly close. Say to your partner “tell me if this is helping or if you want me to stop”. We suggest stopping fanning if she is experiencing a contraction that is causing discomfort. When moms are laboring without any pain medication, they often prefer that all comfort measures stop during the contraction.After the contraction starts again you can resume fanning.This pause also gives your arm a small break. It is surprising how fatiguing it can be to use this fan for an extended period of time.

Practicing: After you get your fan, we suggest practicing it with your partner. Anything that you can try ahead of time will increase your confidence and familiarity during the actual labor and birth. Also, when you practice you can work out your partner’s preferences on how she likes the fan to be used.

Additional Use: If your partner finds comfort from smells, then you might consider an additional use of the fan. It can be used as an aid in aromatherapy. Aromatherapy uses aromatic essential oils medicinally to improve the health of the body, mind, and spirit. We love peppermint oil for labor and birth. This oil can be used in a room diffuser.As an alternative you can place a few drops of the oil on a paper towel. To distribute the scent gentle in the room, you can hold up the paper towel and gentle fan it. This will direct a light scent to your partner. We suggest practicing this technique as well.

Best time to use this tool: We have seen that during pushing is the best time to use the fan. Pushing can require a significant amount of physical exertion and can really cause her temperature to rise. The general rule is to fan your partner between pushes, but take a break while she is pushing.

Of course with all things in labor, listen to your partner. She will let you know what is helpful and what is not. And don’t take anything personally! It is better to use the tools that you brought for labor and birth and let your partner tell them that they aren’t working than to leave them in your bag.

Don't forget your free fan!