For many of us - especially when we are having our first baby - it can be difficult knowing what is medically necessary and what simply 'routine procedure' in our antentatal care during pregnancy and birth.
These short video clips created by www.injoyvideos.com take you through six simple steps to a safer birth, and are wonderful to watch during your pregnancy in preparation for your baby's birth. They take the mystery out of what you can ask for and what really does support a labour going well, whilst also explaining that some procedures are encouraged even if they are not necessarily going to support your intention for a safe, natural and gentle birth, where this is possible.
Please note that 'Pytocin' is called Syntocin in the UK and refers to the synthetic Oxytocin given by IV Drip during induction and to increase intensity of contractions if there is a 'failure to progress'.
Birthlight (all our antenatal classes are Birthlight classes) does not endorse any type of holding of breath during the 'pushing stage' of labour and this is also backed up by the Royal College of Midwives paper on the 2nd stage of labour: 'Are we pushing too hard?'
We also go through which birth positions may be better for your body in our birth preparation workshops, and it's worth noting that deep squats are usually best avoided unless they are a position you instinctively choose and feel comfortable in. In general a 30 degree angle from the base of the spine to the top of the spine is optimal for the pelvic outlet to be at its widest.
If your baby is BREECH, lying on THE RIGHT or lying TRANSVERSE then visit www.spinningbabies.com for some top tips to get them head down!
If you are 'overdue' and are considering being induced thir article about being 10 months pregnant, is worth a read.
To understand in depth what really helps a labour to go well, download the free ebook 'ecstatic birth' from Dr. Sarah Buckley's website. She explains the physiology of labour and birth in clear easy terms, makin it much simpler to understand the complex workings of the birthing hormones.
Birth plans are your way of communicating your wishes about your birth day. They are what help you to avoid any routine intervention and protocol.
It is worth noting that both Symtometrine and Vitamin K will be administered and your placenta will be kept by the hospital unless you state you wish otherwise.
The umbilical chord will still in most instances, be clamped and cut as soon as the baby is born, rather than when the chord stops pulsing. If you want to wait until the chord has stopped pulsing before the umbilical chord is clamped, you need to state this in your birth plan.
Syntometrine is given routinely to the mother, after a baby is born. This is in order to deliver the placenta more speedily and prevent a haemorrhage.
It is not medically necessary to have this intramuscular injection, though if the baby is born by ventouse or forceps, it is advisable.
It is also worth doing your research regarding Vitamin K as it is administered routinely to all babies once they are born, by injection.
There is the option of having the Vitamin K administered orally, though this is not generally offered or discussed.
There is also a case for not having any Vitamin K suspension at all, as the mother naturally passes Vitamin K to her baby through the umbilical chord, if it is given time to stop pulsing naturally. Read here for more info.
Birth plans are worth drafting and redrafting. Keep them in the positive and friendly in their tone.
For some useful tips on how to write them you can search the net, and also contact us and we will send you some examples.