Spain can be an excellent place to raise children and live with them for a variety of reasons. However, what you do with the kids when they arrive isn’t the only question that might be on your mind. How you welcome those children into the world matters as well. Whether you’re expecting or planning to be expecting, it’s always a good idea to understand what it’s like to get pregnant and give birth in the country that you’re in. Here, we’re looking at some of the benefits, as well as the caveats, of doing it in Spain.
Of course, one of the most important factors throughout your journey towards having your little one is being able to expect a decent quality of care. Spain ranks as one of the best-developed countries in terms of contact between expecting mothers and the medical professionals that they are relying on. You’re going to get all of the tests and scans that you should do to ensure that you’re able to rest easy and see exactly how your baby is growing inside of you. What’s more, Spain benefits from public health care coverage for maternity services, though you can opt to go private for some extras.
Celebrating and welcoming your baby
Although they may not have always been a part of the tradition of welcoming a new member of the family, baby showers have now started to become a much more common sight in Spain. Sometime before the birth, such as a month before the due date, you can expect to have friends and any family members nearby attending to celebrate the birth, as well as bringing gifts to help take care of the new member of the family. Other modern traditions like planning a memorable gender reveal party is starting to become a lot more common, as well. Essentially, you can plan to have the same kind of fuss made over you as you would in most other western countries.
How much can you expect to pay to give birth?
No matter where you are, there’s always some cost to giving birth and that’s no different for Spain, of course. Even if you don’t have insurance, the costs of giving birth in Spain can be fairly low. In 2018, those costs came in at around $1,950 even for those who aren’t on the public insurance that’s available to many. Additional complications tend not to add too much to that bill. As such, Spain is at least one of the countries where you don’t have to worry about the costs of giving birth, which can be pretty exorbitant in other parts of the world. All the while, you’re getting that high standard of care mentioned above.
The big day itself
It’s always a good idea to have some idea ahead of time as to how the actual birth itself is going to go. When you do go to the hospital, it’s important to bring with you your passport, your NIE identification card, and any other necessary paperwork, such as insurance paperwork to get the care that you need. It can be vital to have someone who speaks Spanish with you if you cannot do it yourself, as English is not spoken universally, and you want to be able to ask nurses what is happening and to understand the process as it’s going. Spanish hospitals do not provide gas or air during childbirth, so if you want to manage pain, then you have to plan for epidurals or pethidine and ask for them. Similarly, alternative birthing methods that are becoming more common around the world, like water births, are not quite as widespread in Spain.
After the birth
Just as a lot of care goes into antenatal care in Spain, the same goes for postnatal care. Your child’s health will be monitored and the doctor or midwife will be there to check on them and to address anything that might cause any concern. It should be noted that midwives in Spain don’t give as much aftercare to the mother themselves, but that family and friends are expected to give them that care as well. Usually, you can leave with your child after 5 days, after which you should register your baby’s birth, within 8 days. Statutory maternity leave does exist, but it’s a little less than in some other countries, with 16 weeks of statutory leave available to all mothers.
No matter where you do it, every pregnancy and birth is going to have its ups and downs, its pros, and its bumps along the way (pun intended.) Knowing what to expect can be a major help in acclimating, so hopefully, the info above helps.