Natural Childbirth ~ Really?

Yes, whenever possible!  What is the definition of natural childbirth?  Natural childbirth is pregnancy, labor and birth the way nature intended ~ free of drugs, interventions and augmentations.   Natural childbirth is completely achievable in hospitals, birth centers and of course at home.  Proper preparation (education, exercise, nutrition…) and various types of support are the essential keys to natural childbirth.

Yes, our bodies were created to grow a life and give birth naturally.  So, why do so woman many feel as if their only option is a medically managed birth?  Here are a few possible answers:  lack of extended generational family members living in close proximity, Hollywood’s dramatization of birth, the war on midwifery & home-birth, limitations placed on OB’s due to malpractice insurance and a general lack of trust in our own bodies.

Yes, we can trust our bodies to birth naturally.  As a society we are hundreds of years into thinking ourselves right out of our intuition.  Our amazing, highly evolved brains have been trained to override those “pesky” intuitive feelings.   Women have given birth naturally since the beginning of time.  Learning to listen to your gut feelings will greatly improve the likely hood of achieving natural birth.

Yes, natural childbirth is completely achievable.  Here are 6 essential keys to natural childbirth…

  1. Support ~ Birth Team: Surround yourself with a supportive team of birthing professionals.  Interview no less than three OB’s or Midwives!  Become the most informed birth consumer you can be.  Check out your local birth networks like Birthing 411 for supportive people, organizations, classes, doulas and childbirth educators.
  2. Education:  Childbirth education is imperative.  Choose a comprehensive childbirth class that includes information on healthy pregnancy, labor coaching, relaxation techniques, common labor medications/interventions and how to avoid them, conscious consumerism, newborn expectations and breastfeeding 101.  Check out my Joyful & Informed Natural Childbirth Classes.
  3. Exercise:  The output of energy during labor is equivalent to that of running a marathon.  Train for the Birthathon that is labor by exercising your birthing muscles and increasing your stamina.  Get started now!  Pregnancy Exercises
  4. Nutrition:  Eat well to grow well!  Growing a life takes a diet rich in nutritious food.  Eat plenty of fruits, veggies, lean protein and whole grains.  Stay well hydrated; drink at least eight 8oz classes of water at day!  Dr. Sears Pregnancy Diet Tips
  5. Relaxation:  Breathe!  Learn to breathe by fully engaging your diaphragm.  A full diaphragmatic breath is powerfully relaxing.  Next, learn to relax all of the muscle groups in your body through a series of tense and relax techniques.  Breathe Well
  6. Coach:  A supportive birth coach is absolutely necessary!  Your partner, husband, sister or close friend can be your coach.  Your coach should plan to attend all childbirth classes, breastfeeding classes, doctors appointments and of course your entire birth.  The coach doesn’t need to be an expert in pregnancy, labor and birth.  The coach needs to be an expert in loving you!  The coach is someone you love and that will be there for you way beyond the birth.  A coach is different from a doula.  A doula is an experienced birth professional that supports women and couples through pregnancy, labor and birth.

 

As the Newborn Family Coach, it has been my honor to empower expectant families for more than 15 years.  Check out my website for more birth education options at http://www.newbornfamilycoach.com or call me at 314-265-7407.  My next Comprehensive Childbirth Class Series begins on 12/4!

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