Natural birth has many benefits for the mother and child. Pain medications can slow down contractions and lead to longer labors, which can also have a domino-effect, causing further medical interventions. Each and every intervention comes with pros and cons, risks and rewards. Research shows babies born through natural childbirth are more alert and show more interest in breastfeeding once delivered. Along with having faster recoveries, natural childbirth can also be very empowering. Having my first child completely natural was THE most empowering moment of my life. It was a deeply spiritual journey that showed me how strong I was mentally and how incredible the body is physically.
How can I increase my chances of having a natural birth?
Get comfortable in your body and learn how to properly breathe
No, really. Are you really breathing fully and deeply? Can you get your breath to BEGIN at your perineum and move UP towards your heart without experiencing tremendous tension in your diaphragm, chest, and back? Try it. That’s basically how it is supposed to work all the time. If not, you have some work to do. Get on all 4’s and stretch like a cat and slowly guide your breath into your lower belly. If you still feel blocked, you may need some bodywork by someone who can release your diaphragm and your accessory muscles involved with breathing.
Sometimes finding out your baby’s gender is really valuable
It can help you connect to them in a deeper way. Talk to your baby and refer to them positively. If you don’t know their name call them “she” or “he” or “my love.” They hear you my dears! Make your labor process a dialogue between both of you. Tell them how excited you are to see them and that you will be with them soon.
Massage your belly in the second trimester and connect with your baby
This is your baby’s first massage actually. An effective way to massage your belly is to start at your pubic bone and lift up towards your heart. Then lift up towards your belly button from each hip. Think of giving your uterus some support and a gentle stretch or lift. Your uterus is a muscle and is stretching for you and your little one. Next, imagine your belly button is the center of a flower and massage big “petals” around it. You can do this during labor also to stimulate contractions.
Learn how to “be empty” – not full of fear, worry, expectations or projections about how your birth will go
Too many times women are all worked up with worry for 9 months about the birth, the people who will be there, blah blah, blah. Stop it! As soon as labor starts, don’t freak. If it starts in the middle of the night, keep the lights off. Stay quiet and don’t call everyone to come over. This is your process not theirs.
When you are in your “window,” at 38 weeks, you can start having some acupressure and stimulate some points (like the “4 gates”) to get the meridian energy flowing in order to support the birth process.
In my opinion, it is not good to induce too early, whether naturally or artificially, UNLESS it is necessary for medical reasons. I will not “induce” at this time even if someone is totally over it – but I will start opening the process. When the fruit is ripe, it will fall from the tree anyway – no use in forcing it.
Have a Birth Doula
Look into having a birth doula, someone who will be your birth advocate no matter where you plan to deliver. A doula can give you the support you need throughout the entire experience and support you in a way that your partner may not be able to.
How can I make my natural childbirth less painful?
By staying upright and active. During contractions, your womb tilts forward if you are standing up straight. This means that your contractions will be more effective and you will have less discomfort. When you are standing up, your contractions are stronger and more powerful. It is possible that your labor will be shorter as a result of this.
When you are upright, the lower section of your spine has more freedom of movement. This suggests that the delivery canal will be able to enlarge and accommodate the baby’s head. Pelvic joints have the ability to expand and move, resulting in reduced pressure on nerves.
Walking during labor may help to minimize the time spent in the early stages of labor. Depending on how long your labor has been going on, you may require assistance changing positions between contractions.
How can I prepare my body for natural labor?
There are many ways you can prepare your body for natural labor. One way is by eating the right foods, like seaweed and bananas! You should also drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated as well eat small meals throughout the day so that it’s easier if birth doesn’t occur on its scheduled date or time frame (which may happen). Consider taking an herbal supplement if desired because it could help with mental clarity while giving some peace of mind during what’s sure be one heckuva experience!
Take a pregnancy yoga class and learn how to stretch safely
As your baby grows, you want to make space for them. I recommend spending 10-15 minutes daily doing cat stretches, circling your hips, and making figure 8’s. It’s very important to prepare your pelvic space before you go into labor.
Sleep on your side after 18 weeks to avoid blocking your blood flow to your baby. This prevents supine hypotensive syndrome and prevents varicose veins.
Be super hydrated the whole pregnancy
Because pregnancy is a “hot” experience for most women, you need all the cooling energy you can get! Eating any spicy food contributes to yin deficiency; yin deficiency is an underlying contributor to breech babies in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine). If you want to avoid that, don’t eat spicy food after about 20 weeks.
What position is best for natural birth?
Stay active and upright for the best natural labor. The act of moving around during labor can help to distract you from whatever discomfort you are experiencing. It can also help to reduce the length of time spent in labor.
It is possible that you will feel the need to remain upright and move around. Pay attention to your body. Being upright involves adopting any stance that prevents you from lying down. Gravity will aid in the movement of your baby along the birth route. The requirement for pain treatment or interventions to deliver the baby is reduced in pregnant women who are upright and active during their pregnancy. The increased oxygen supply and better positioning for your child when you are upright will benefit both of you.
Staying upright includes:
- on a birthing ball
- kneeling or squatting
- on all fours
How Many Days in Hospital after Natural Birth?
It is expected that you will be in the hospital for 24 to 48 hours following a natural birth. The two days following delivery before you return home are filled with a variety of activities, including:
During the first few days after delivery, your healthcare practitioner will evaluate any perineal tears, check on the status of the uterus’ return to its pre-pregnancy state, make sure there isn’t any excessive vaginal bleeding, and monitor you and your baby to ensure that no complications arise.
You will be transferred from the labor and delivery unit to a new private or shared room on the postpartum floor of the hospital.
A small number of hospitals offer maternity suites that include space for labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery, although the vast majority transfer new mothers to the postpartum unit within a few hours of delivery, as long as they are stable.
You’ll get the opportunity to speak with a lactation expert who will provide assistance with breastfeeding.
If you believe you would prefer to be discharged from the hospital sooner than 24 hours after giving birth, you should discuss this with your healthcare practitioner during the final weeks of your pregnancy. You’ll need to take your infant to the doctor within two or three days after being released from the hospital if you’re given an early discharge. According to certain pediatricians, the newborn must be seen in the office within 24 hours after being born. ) You’ll also need to see a doctor or midwife, although you can wait a week or so if you’re feeling fine.
How Much Does Natural Birth Cost?
- The following are examples of the cost of care:
- An OB physician costs $3-8K, and a hospital costs $15-20K (Vaginal Birth costs $3-12K for mom, $2-5K for newborn care, C/Section costs $15-20K).
- Pathologist is a medical professional who specializes in pathology (for reading your labs)
- Anesthesiologist ($3000 for an epidural, for example).
- Services in the field of imaging (ultrasounds, x-rays, etc)
- Examinations at a laboratory
- Pediatrician Consultation
- For a typical natural birth, the cost can range anywhere from $8,000 on the low end to $40,000 in total for a hospital birth, depending on the circumstances.
As a result, because it involves little to no medical assistance, natural delivery is widely regarded as the preferred method of birthing. Natural processes should be left to their own devices when it comes to biological processes, and medical intervention should only be used when it is absolutely essential. Natural childbirth is advantageous to both the mother and the kid. Unless there is an extremely compelling need to do otherwise, here are a few reasons why mothers should select a natural childbirth method for their children:
Reduced risk: Avoiding any surgical procedures or drugs during pregnancy and childbirth benefits both the mother and the child by lowering the likelihood of any types of dangers associated with childbirth. Medication increases the likelihood of a protracted labor as well as the possibility of a baby’s development being slowed in the first month.
Abnormalities that are not required: When labor is induced by injections or any other drugs, the infant may have autism or other neurological disorders. By choosing natural childbirth, you can avoid the development of these problems.
Reduced risk of blood transfusion: Hormones such as Oxytocin, when released in higher amounts in the body, can reduce the risk of pneumonia and blood transfusion in the newborn. Caesarean section procedures can raise the likelihood of serious complications.
More comfortable and quicker recovery: Going the natural route and persevering through the discomfort of labor does, in the long run, pay off. Women who undergo a caesarean section have been shown to require more time to recuperate than women who have had a regular delivery, according to research. A caesarean section is a significant surgery that requires several weeks to recover from. It takes roughly half as much time to recuperate as a typical recovery period does.