First-time mothers may feel overwhelmed by the delivery process because most people paint labor as one of the most painful experiences your body goes through. You must mentally and physically prepare to give birth, and it only falls on your shoulders.

Luckily, there are ways to help new moms get through labor and maintain their sanity. Here are five tips that new moms can implement before and during the delivery.

Know the expectations

Most expecting mothers spend months researching how to raise their child and the best methods for food, clothing, education and discipline. However, it’s critical to know what to expect in the delivery room – even if it scares you.

You can either work with a labor coach or attend a birthing class beforehand to know the expectations and to hear different experiences from other families. It may even help reduce the stress surrounding the big day.

Be ready to wait

Most new parents will want to go to the hospital immediately after the first contraction. However, life isn’t like the movies. Most hospitals won’t take pregnant women until her contractions are regular, painful and coming every three to five minutes.

Moms can take this into account and plan to find the most comfortable position for them and an activity to take their mind off the pain, including watching a show, taking a walk or cuddling in bed. You want to stay home as long as you can because it’s more comfortable than the hospital room.

Be flexible

Most women come in with a clear plan for their child’s birth, but it’s crucial to stay flexible and allow the plans to change if necessary. For example, some mothers want to avoid epidurals throughout delivery, but you may change your mind in the middle of labor. It’s up to you to make the right decision for your body and your child.

Unfortunately, sometimes mothers do not have the choice to change birth plans. And doctors rush to make decisions on their behalf, causing more risks and birth injuries. Make sure to hold your doctors accountable if their choices end with your future child’s injury.