When it was first confirmed that you were expecting, you were most probably overjoyed with the prospect of bringing your very own child into the world, someone whom you could love and care for unconditionally. As you go further along your pregnancy, you would have started researching the various methods of childbirth available and are now deciding on the best way for you to deliver your long-awaited baby boy or girl. Therefore, to help make the process easier for you, this article provides a general guide on all birthing methods available so that you can make the best decision for you and baby when the big day arrives.
There are two main categories of childbirth you could opt for – natural childbirth or surgical procedure. For a long time, natural childbirth has been the obvious choice for many women. As the name suggests, natural childbirth is a natural, minimally invasive delivery method that allows mothers to be aware of everything as well as be in control of what is happening to their bodies throughout labour. Usually conducted without the use of medication, natural childbirth oftentimes brings along with it the discomfort and pain that are often associated with giving birth.
Apart from heading to the hospital to deliver your child, home births, one of the methods of natural childbirth may be for you if you prefer to deliver baby in the privacy and comfort of your own home. In some cases, mothers feel more in control as they can determine which of the rooms in the home they would rather deliver in, the people who would be there to support her and be assured of the midwife(s)’s complete attention.
The most important consideration for this method of natural birth is the safety of mother and baby. There are generally no problems for home births if both mother and baby are healthy and have no medical risk factors. Mothers must also ensure that the doctor or midwife attending to them is fully qualified and equipped to manage home births. Aside from that, other preparations include obtaining all the necessary supplies and support you would need before and after labour, as well as to organise transfers to the nearest medical centre should any complications arise.
Lamaze and The Bradley Method
These two methods incorporate a course of childbirth classes where you would learn about breathing techniques, pain management as well as coaching your spouse on helping you before and after delivery. Lamaze is focused mainly on increasing the mother’s confidence in delivering her child without the use of painkillers. It is based on a diversion technique, designed to focus the mother’s attention onto breathing and relaxation techniques so that the experience of pain is lessened throughout labour.
The Bradley Method on the other hand, is a holistic and intensive 12 week programme designed to physically, mentally and emotionally prepare the couple for childbirth. It goes a step further than Lamaze by also dealing with the nutritional aspects of pregnancy as well as post-partum management and issues.
Both these methods have shown to result in high rates of natural births that do not require surgical intervention or use of medication such as epidurals.