by Dr. Scott Saunders, M.D.
Having attended hundreds of deliveries, I have seen many highs and lows of childbirth. One girl, who was only 14 years old, seemed to be just about as tall lying down as standing. I didn’t think she was going to be able to get that big baby out of her little body, but she squatted on the delivery table and pushed her baby out in twenty minutes. After we cleaned everything up and she was cuddling her baby with a big smile on her face, I asked her, “How did you do that?” She replied with such wisdom for one so young, “I wanted to hold my baby, so I just thought of which muscles to tighten and which ones to relax to let him out.”
Choose your helper
While modern techniques have dramatically reduced complications, there are still risks with each pregnancy. One decision that will affect pregnancy-related complications is the choice of a health care provider to assist in the delivery. Studies from both the US and Europe, comparing doctors and midwives, show a difference in healthy deliveries and babies.
Keep up with your labor! Try this “Labor-Aid” Drink!
– 1/3 c. fresh lemon juice
– 1/3 c. honey
– 1/4 t. sea salt
-2 calcium/magnesium tablets crushed
– Enough water to make 4 cups.
Enjoy 37 weeks onward to prepare your body for labor.
For example, a large study published in 1998 (MacDorman and Singh) examined more than four million low-risk births in the United States. (Complicated pregnancies were eliminated because midwives generally handle only low-risk births.) Compared with physician-attended births, midwives have about one-third fewer newborn deaths, a third fewer low birth weight babies, and almost sixty percent fewer complications, such as C-sections. It would be wise to consider a nurse-midwife if you have a low-risk pregnancy.
Whichever you choose, be sure your health care provider is aligned with your principles. Pregnancy and delivery is not predictable, so you may need to be flexible. Remember, the safety of the mother and baby is your first priority.
Prepare your body
Before you actually get pregnant, your body needs preparation not just to protect, but also to
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