Experiencing all or part of childbirth in the water has become a popular choice for many women. Expectant mothers may be able to plan a water birth in their own homes with a midwife, in a birthing center or in a hospital that is equipped with pools for this purpose. A woman may choose to go through labor in the water and then move to land for delivery, or she may go through the whole process in the water. Here are four reasons women choose to have a water birth.
Provides the Opportunity for a Natural Birth with Less Pain
Mothers are often concerned about the effects of medication during labor. While pain in childbirth is not pleasant, sometimes women want to be sure that they are awake and fully aware of all that is happening. They may also be concerned about what medication may do to their babies.
According to Waterbirth International, giving birth in the water can be a very effective method of pain control. They say that this is the case for many reasons. One factor is that the water is calming and soothing to many people, and women who are relaxed experience less pain than those in a hospital bed. Another reason that water can help reduce pain is that the mother is lighter in the water and has the freedom to move her body into a variety of positions that are not possible on land.
Women who are relatively comfortable during labor are less likely to choose pain medication.
Waterbirth International also says that the relaxation experienced by the mother during a water birth actually speeds up the birthing process.
Offers a More Peaceful Setting
Proponents of water birth say that experiencing labor and delivery in a pool of warm water makes the whole process far more peaceful and calm than it would be in a hospital bed. This atmosphere can be good for women who want to invite their older children to be present for the birth of a younger sibling and can result in a memory that is positive for the whole family.
Reduces the Need for Medical Procedures
Health care system, Health East, reports that having a water birth decreases the rates of c-sections and the need for an episiotomy, a surgical cut put in the vagina to make it easier for the baby to come out.
Many women like the idea of reducing the need for any kind of surgical intervention when giving birth. Recovering from a c-section can be painful, and women are typically able to resume normal activities much more quickly after a natural birth than they are after a c-section. An episiotomy can have negative repercussions such as further tearing and even incontinence that can last for the rest of a woman's life.
Allows an Easier Transition for the Baby
Those who choose a water birth point to the fact that the baby has been floating in fluid for 9 months, so being born into water makes the transition easier. In a water birth, the umbilical cord remains intact longer and continues to provide oxygen to the baby. This makes the transition to breathing air less traumatic for the newborn baby.
A water birth may also be easier on the baby simply because the mother is more relaxed. This reduces any negative impact on the baby caused by the mother's elevated blood pressure or tension due to anxiety.
Women who are interested in a water birth should talk to a midwife or other healthcare provider about the potential benefits and any risks that may be involved. Mothers and newborns deserve the most comfortable birthing experiences possible, and a water birth can be the perfect choice for some families. Visit http://www.whallc.com to learn more about various birthing options.
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