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Monday, July 21, 2014

Choosing A Home Birth – Your Pregnancy Can End At Home With Proper Preparation

When you are pregnant, you have many different people offering you so many suggestions that it can be confusing to know what the right choice is for you and your baby. Most of your friends and relatives have given birth in a hospital, and they argue that this is the safest way. However, more women than ever in the United States are choosing to have home births, and most of those births are uneventful in terms of complications. They also create a deeper bond and a more lasting memory for the woman giving birth.

If you read stories about home births online (such as on the forum located here), you will find that almost universally, women were extremely happy with their choice. If you think about it, it is easy to see why. A birth at home is in the most comfortable environment for you. You can shower if you would like, and you can move around your home freely. The lighting is the type of lighting that you like best (no harsh overhead fluorescent lighting), and you bed is there for you right after you have given birth. In addition, it is going to become the most familiar place for your baby once he is born, so why not start him out in the place where he will be spending most of his time and life.

So, if a home birth sounds like a good choice for you, there are some things that you can do to ensure that you are able to have one. Of course, it is not possible to prepare in advance for every eventuality, and some women are not able to have a home birth even if they want one. Conditions such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, and placenta Previa are certain to prevent a home birth, since they are complications that are much more likely to require the intervention of a hospital medical team.

However, for those women who are having a normal pregnancy, with no complications, who are at low risk, there are a number of things that you can do so that your wishes can be honored. First, be sure you are getting adequate nutrition. Following the basic food groups, having good portion sizes, and eating whole grains and healthy fruits and vegetables can help ensure you are having good nutrition. The baby’s weight is also a good indicator, so be sure your doctor agrees that your weight gain and the baby’s are appropriately progressing.

Second, you should ensure that you are taking the proper pre-natal vitamins. For the most part, doctors and midwives today have been recommending pre-natal vitamins based on the favorable results of many studies, including those performed by the March Of Dimes. Certain vitamins have been definitively shown to prevent birth defects, and increase fetal health.

Third, you may wish to consider having a pre-natal massage session or a series of sessions before you give birth, and then continuing after you have given birth, preferably in your home. Due to limitations to mobility, getting yourself to a spa may become impossible, and massage therapy can be crucial for your pregnancy. Rather than allowing the lack of mobility to stop you from having one, it is best to have one in your home. Evidence is mounting with each passing month and year on the incredible benefits to both mother and baby of prenatal massage therapy.
Fourth, it is advisable to sign up for a pre-natal yoga class, or to obtain a prenatal yoga video, such as can be found on amazon by clicking here. Pre-natal yoga has demonstrated beneficial effects for every stage of pregnancy, and many physicians and midwives heartily recommend the practice. Like massage, it can help your body be prepared for labor by loosening and relaxing the pelvic floor muscles, making pushing during labor easier.

Fifth, it is strongly advised that you hire a doula, in addition to a skilled and experienced midwife. The doula will help the laboring woman with emotional support, as well as helping to calm the laboring woman and her partner. Having a doula is almost certainly a must if one wants to have a natural childbirth at home. You can check the links here and here to help you find a certified doula in the New Jersey area.

While there are risks of a home birth, the risks are generally small. Usually, the risks involve complications during the birth that were not foreseen, leading to the need to be transferred to a hospital. Prior to the 1900s, nearly all births were home births. Advances in modern medical treatment have made even home births safer, with midwives generally bringing fetal monitoring equipment with them, along with oxygen for the mother or baby. With proper preparation, it has been found that home births are nearly as safe as those in a hospital or birthing center, and their popularity is on the rise. Research for this article was performed on The Mayo Clinic's home birth page, the American Pregnancy Association’s page, and a recent Huffington Post article detailing the results of a study of home births in America.

Since more and more modern women are choosing to insist on a natural childbirth, feeling that their decision matters and that they have a say, it is only natural that home births are following in the footsteps of this growing trend. Just as C-sections come with many risks, but are performed routinely, perhaps there will come a time when births are routinely performed at home even though there are some risks to this. If you are considering a home birth, then you are paving the way for future women just like yourself to make the same decision. You are treating pregnancy and birth as a natural process rather than a medical condition, and this is to be applauded. We can only hope that more women in the future will follow in these footsteps toward a more integrated approach to their own labor and birth.

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