Business of Being Born

On the Ricki Lake show this week, Ricki discusses…The Business of Being Born.

“Home birth may not be for everybody, but certainly informed choice is for everybody.”

Farrah’s Hypnobabies Birth

••This post comes all the way from Canada, shared with permission from Carlie Condon (Mom) and Jenn King, a fellow Hypnobabies instructor and all around great human!••

Let me start off by saying in no uncertain terms that I credit Jenn and the Hypnobabies program with the beauty and peace I experienced during the birth of my second child, Farrah Rosalynd.  Her birth is singularly the most awe-inspiring feat of my body and mind that I have ever accomplished.

Farrah is now almost six months old and this is a re-writing of my original birth story that was quickly typed out during a newborn’s nap.  This edit affords me both the luxury of reflection and the accuracy of detail in sharing with you my experience.  I found great comfort and inspiration in the reading of other women’s Hypnobabies birth stories during the lead up to Farrah’s birth.  I hope you do too.

Farrah was born three days before her due date on September 1st, 2011 at 2:57am in our bedroom in our home.  The anticipation of her arrival was overwhelming.  My first daughter, Ella, was born three weeks early and I assumed that Farrah’s gestation would be of similar length.  The long hot August days stretched for miles.

I had been having practice pressure waves since the first week of August and had thought on a few occasions that my birthing time had begun only to have the pressure waves trail off.  On August 31st, I attended my scheduled 39 week appointment with my midwife group.  When my midwife offered to check me, my curiosity won out and she informed me with a slight look of shock that she was unsure just how I had not yet gone into labour.  My cervix was dilated an encouraging 5cm.  My practice birthing waves were handily put into perspective and I was immediately glad for their easy lead-up.
Continue reading

Hypno-Baby Linc Makes the Scene at Home!

The birth of Lincoln Christopher

••From Hypnobabies!••

The birth of Lincoln Christopher

During my whole pregnancy, Chris and I had been planning to have a very natural Hospital birth. Every appointment we would ask our dr about doing it as naturally as possible and he acted like we could do this however we wanted. Slowly I would ask him specifics such as not being hooked up to monitors and fluids. As well as eating if I felt necessary.

Of course I started to realize then that his idea of a natural birth was VERY different than mine. He also told me every appointment that I should go ahead and watch the epidural video “just in case”. This told me that he wasn’t taking me seriously, and thought that I would resort to the epidural. Well at my 38 week appointment he informed my husband and I that he had read my chart wrong and I have had Gestational Diabetes the whole pregnancy.

Continue reading

Is the FDA after your kiddie pool?

Does the FDA not have anything better to do? How about checking into the nutrition content in food that’s served to our children in public schools daily, and it’s connection to childhood obesity and diabetes? No? You have to go after our kiddie pools?? WHAT?!

According to Barbara Harper, author of Gentle Birth Choices and founder of  Waterbirth International, the FDA has seized a shipping container of AquaBorn birthing pools at a dock in Portland, Oregon, and have ordered agents to “inspect and destroy.”

Birth Pool, ready to work it's magic.

“They claim they are unregistered medical equipment, but they are not providing a way or means to get them registered. In

other words, if the medical authorities can’t stop waterbirth, then just have the FDA take away the

birth pools,” she explains in a lengthy discussion that began yesterday.

While birth pools are imported to Canada under the category “paddling pools” and some are imported here in the U.S. under the category “sitz baths,” they have no legal standing as medical equipment at this time.

As the medical community continues it’s attempt at treating pregnancy as an illness, we will continue to use and promote the methods of giving birth that we know are safe for our bodies and our babies. Pregnancy is not an illness, and a birthing tub is not a medical device to be regulated.

Read on for interesting facts about waterbirth from Heather at Witnessing Birth

Hip-hip-hooray for waterbirth!

During my labor & delivery rotation, I research birth methods and found a great article that presents some compelling evidence to support waterbirth. Titled “Waterbirths: A Comparative Study”, the article appeared in Fetal Diagnosis and Therapy in 2000; the study itself was completed in Switzerland by researchers Verena Geissbuhler and Jakob Eberhard. Looking at data compiled over a period of 6 1/2 years, 7508 births were analyzed with specific attention to birth method – bedbirth, waterbirth, and birthing stool were the options considered for this study.

So, let’s fast-forward to the results: episiotomies were more commonly performed on women who gave birth in the bed (35.45), followed by those who birthed on the stool (27.7%), with the lowest rate belonging to the women who birthed in water (12.8%). Talk about statistical significance! What’s more, bedbirthers also had the highest rate of 3rd- and 4th-degree lacerations (4.1%) and women who gave birth in the bed experienced more blood loss and pain than those who chose another birthing method. In contrast, maternal blood loss, use of pharmacological pain medicine, and dissatisfaction with the birth were decreased in women who had waterbirths, as compared to bedbirthers and those who used the birthing stool.

What’s more, the APGAR scores of babies born in water were significantly higher at 5 and 10 minutes when compared with babies born on land. No increase in incidence of infection or water aspiration after waterbirths was reported. In fact, the researchers posit “waterbirths may enhance the experience of birth.” Yeehaw!

The take-home message: alternative forms of birthing (such as waterbirth and usage of a birth stool) do not increase the risk of poor health outcomes for mom or baby and actually provide some protection against restrictive and invasive obstetrical procedures. Thus, waterbirth and usage of a birth stool should be integrated into maternity care settings, and used alongside classical birth management. What does this mean? Bring waterbirth into the hospital! Special note to nurses, doctors, midwives, and other members of the obsterical team: form a working group, research birth methods, make a policy (or update an old one to reflect current research), and change the face of maternity care at your hospital.

After all, waterbirth should not exist on the obstetrical fringe, huddled in the corner next to homebirth. Rather, introducing waterbirth and the usage of a birth stool into the hospital will pave the way for women to exercise choice with regard to birthing position and method, and fosters an empowering, respectful, caring environment. Always, careful vigilance, regular monitoring, and prompt treatment of emergencies is paramount. However, with a positive, trusting provider-parent-child relationship, cultivating more choices in childbirth has the potential to make a life-long impact on the way women view and experience birth.

So FDA, why this attack on birth pools?