I have closed up the baby shop, but I wish someone had given me tips for a natural delivery when I was pregnant with my first, who I wanted to birth naturally. It is possible! If you are thinking of delivering naturally there are some things you should know, that I wish I had known (like how much water can be helpful!) Here are a few tips for a natural delivery.
Tips for a Natural Delivery
I know that sounds weird right? But if you want to have as normal a delivery as possible, you need to be educated in all things pregnancy and delivery related. Birthing classes are a good start; you can ask questions and get answers. You want to know about things like natural labor pain management techniques (breathing, relaxation, those things) and how labor and birth actually work, like what is going on inside your body. At least for me, when I know what is happening and I have a better understanding of it all, it is easier to cope with.
When it comes to your doc or midwife, you can be picky! Choose someone who supports natural birth. Hiring a doula isn’t a bad idea either, she will be able to help you with those techniques you are going to need to have the best experience in natural birth.
This is actually more important than you might think. If you gain too much weight, not only will losing it be very difficult after, but your delivery will be that much easier if you can keep the added pounds at bay. And actually studies show that women who don’t gain too much weight, labor easier than those who are overweight. They tend to have less complications and risk of medical intervention than those who are carrying around more pounds than healthy. Your doc will help you figure out what is a healthy range, generally an extra 25 pounds during pregnancy is normal (FYI, I gained 50 with my son and I am still trying to get it off, he is 10 months).
Don’t rush right in!
Once you go into labor, many women grab their bag and head straight for L&D. Slow your pregnant roll a minute. Chances have it you will be sent home. Instead, enjoy the comforts of your home, walk around, move, eat, drink and be merry (ok, maybe not merry). Once your contractions are less than 5 minutes apart and getting stronger for a couple of hours, then you can head over.
Water, water, water!
It is not only for drinking. For some magical reason, being in water while laboring eases the pain (well, it’s not exactly magical, it is due to the water taking the pressure off your lower regions). Whether you stand in the shower, sit in a tub or birthing pool, just soak. I sat in a tub with jets for as long as they would keep turning on when I was in labor, and it was everything. That is until the timer ran out and the button wouldn’t work anymore. That was not my favorite part.
If your goal is to deliver your bundle of joy as normal and natural as possible, you can do it. As long as your pregnancy has been a healthy one, go for it, mama! You want to be sure your support team around you understands your wants and needs for your delivery.