Giving birth is one of the most natural experiences a woman can have. But a normal delivery is sometimes perceived to be a risky and unbearably painful experience. Learning about the process is the first step you should take toward preparing for a normal delivery. With today’s sedentary lifestyle and delayed childbearing, having a normal delivery may require active participation on your part.
These 5 easy tips will help you prepare for a normal delivery.
- Be informed
A normal delivery is safer for the mother and the baby. Mothers who deliver normally have a faster recovery period while babies born vaginally have lower risks of respiratory problems.
On the other hand, a cesarean carries increased risks of bladder injuries, bowel injuries and can even cause serious complications in future pregnancies.
One of the best ways to prepare yourself mentally is to attend antenatal classes. These will not only inform you of what to expect but will also teach you exercises and breathing techniques to help cope with labour.
- Choose your doctor wisely
When it comes to deciding on a gynecologist , ask your doctor about their cesarean rate and make your preference for a normal delivery clear. You could also talk to other women who have delivered with the doctor to get a sense of their cesarean rate.
“The cesarean rate for first-time mothers with a single foetus, in the normal head-down position who have crossed 37 weeks should be less than 25%” says Dr. Swati Sinha, consultant obstetrician-gynecologist at Sitaram Bhartia Institute of Science and Research.
- Watch your weight and exercise daily
It’s important to not put on excessive weight during your pregnancy. ‘Eating for two’ is actually just a myth! The extra calories you need depends on your weight during pregnancy and is typically in the range of 200-300 .
“Don’t forget to exercise every day. If you’ve had a sedentary lifestyle, start with a 10-15 minute walk and gradually increase it to 40 minutes daily. Exercise helps you build the stamina that is required to go through labour” sums up Dr. Swati.
- Pick a birth partner
Find someone who can be with you throughout your time in the labour room. For many women this partner is their husband, but it could be anyone else who understands you and who you trust. This partner should attend a class on how he or she could support you during labour – by massaging you, helping you with labour exercises, and providing the emotional support and encouragement that you may need.
- Trust yourself
Women’s bodies are designed to give birth. Trust your instincts to guide you through your labour. Do your labour exercises, practice deep breathing, and focus on the baby.
For generations births took place in homes, with support from family members. Unless there are complications, a well-prepared mom should expect to go through labour without any complications… she should go by her instinct.
Sonali Verma, a first-time mother at Sitaram Bhartia Hospital, shares her experience “I am so glad I found a doctor and a hospital that encourage normal delivery. I was inclined to go for a c-section but decided against it when I learned about the benefits of a normal delivery. The antenatal classes I attended clarified all my questions and concerns, and taught me labour exercises that helped immensely. I am also grateful that my doctor encouraged my husband to be by my side during labour. “
Normal birth is normal and all healthy women with an uncomplicated pregnancy deserve to have one.
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