In recent years, natural childbirth has become a healthcare trend. More and more women are choosing to give birth without any anesthetic medications or surgeries. Though natural childbirth can be empowering for the mother, there are many misconceptions surrounding the topic. Here are some of the most common misconceptions surrounding natural childbirth.
#1. Childbirth is Instinctive
It is true that women have been giving birth since the dawn of time in incredibly harsh circumstances. But this does not mean that childbirth is something that any healthy woman can do by herself without risk. Before modern medical practices were developed, childbirth was the leading cause of death for women. A doctor or an OBGYN specialist has the training and experience to help an expectant mother safely deliver.
#2. Cesareans are Typically an Unnecessary Surgery
Proponents of natural childbirth often claim that C-sections are an unnatural form of birth that is used too much in the United States. The reality could not be farther from this statement. In countries where C-sections are not performed, the mortality rate of both infants and mothers is extremely high. A C-section might seem unnatural, but it is often the best way of ensuring the health of the mother and child.
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#3. Painkillers are Not a Good Choice
More and more women have been eschewing painkillers during labor because natural childbirth advocates make them seem dangerous for the infant. Therefore, many women end up feeling like inadequate mothers if they cannot suffer through intense pain for the safety of their child. However, there is no reason for this turmoil. There are many painkiller options, such as a local anesthetic, that can dull the considerable pain of childbirth without affecting the baby in any way. Women do not need to choose between their child’s safety or their own comfort.
#4. You Have to Choose Between a Hospital or a Natural Birth
Many people make it seem like a woman must choose between a natural child birthing experience or a completely clinical birth in a hospital. In reality, you can still implement whatever birthing plan you like with or without natural birth. You can give birth at home with some medications, or you can experience natural birth at a hospital. It is important to ignore all of the ideology surrounding natural birth and choose what makes you feel most comfortable and safe.
#5. Epidural are Dangerous
Epidural are routinely criticized by natural childbirth because they might slow down childbirth. This is true if the epidural is placed too soon and the mother is not properly monitored, but typically it is not an issue. However, an epidural is typically beneficial, because the mother can be fully aware and participate in childbirth instead of being distracted by pain. If a C-section is necessary, a woman with an epidural can still be present when her child first enters the world.
#6. Medical Intervention Should Be Avoided
Any intervention during the birthing process is often viewed as inherently bad by people considering natural birth. It is important to remember that most medical interventions occur because trained professionals notice the likelihood of a problem occurring. Typically, interventions help to prevent complications from happening later in birth.
Proponents of natural childbirth may make some good points, but in our current health-minded culture, many women feel pressured to have a vaginal birthing experience with no medical help. There are advantages to having or not having a natural birth, so it is important to remember that the best labor experience is one that ends with a healthy baby and a happy, healthy mother.