Are you wondering why people are choosing to have a natural birth? Have you started sipping the natural birth tea, but still, remain unsure of the benefits of natural childbirth? The natural birth movement has transformed the way I think about birth.
I, too, was on the bandwagon for an epidural. I never thought twice about it. In fact, I had always thought my friends, who had powered through natural births were nuts.
Yes, girl! I thought they were nuts for wanting to feel that kind of pain. After getting pregnant and attending a childbirth class, I realized that I was uninformed. Even as a nurse, I was unaware of how alarming the c-section rates were.
So I embedded myself in research and classes. I soaked up all I could. It’s fair to say; I became hooked. In other words, obsessed with making sure I did everything I could to have the birth I wanted. I cut up my epidural membership and joined the natural birth movement.
Markedly, I discovered that having a natural, unmedicated birth was the best option for me. I strongly believe in the benefits. In fact, for many natural moms, the benefits of a natural birth outweigh the fear of managing childbirth pain.
What is a natural birth?
You’re probably rolling your eyes and wondering, What’s a natural birth anyway? Isn’t a vaginal delivery considered a natural birth?
A natural, unmedicated birth is just like how it sounds. It’s more than just having a vaginal delivery. It’s a birthing experience without pharmacological interventions such as pain medications.
Along the same lines, having a natural, unmedicated birth means having a vaginal birth with or without limited medical interventions. In particular, intermittent monitoring, vaginal exams, ultrasounds, and more.
Benefits of natural birth
Here are a few excellent reasons why I chose to have a natural birth
Reduces recovery time
Your recovery time will be much faster with natural childbirth. I was back on my feet right after giving birth. Although I still had to take it easy, restrictions in my movement and activities were minimal.
In some cases, If your birthing at a birth center, you are released 4-6 hours after giving birth! You’re free to go home and enjoy your bundle of joy.
Having a natural birth is not to say, you won’t have any aches and after pains. But you do spend less time recovering and more time enjoying your little person.
Increases labor progression
Another benefit of a natural, drug-free birth is the ability to remain active. Remaining active can significantly help with labor progression. I’m sure you’ve heard women talk about walking to get labor going. Well, this is the same concept.
After having an epidural, your labor can stop progressing or stall out. You may find that you’re stuck at a certain centimeter for longer than you anticipated.
Although your pain will be covered, you’re unable to walk or move to help with labor progression. You have to depend on your birth partner or nurses to help reposition you regularly to help the baby move through the pelvis.
If your labor doesn’t progress, you may be well on your way to a c-section.
May affect baby’s breastfeeding behavior
You may have an easier time breastfeeding. I say this because pain medications can cause the baby to be extra sleepy for the first couple of days.
In general, your little one will be sleepy from the birthing journey. However, having a pain medication may make them harder to arouse for nursing.
Related Post: 15 Top Breastfeeding Essentials for New Moms
Ability to know when to push
Ability to know when to push: Another key benefit of a natural birth is being able to trust and connect better with your body. Surprisingly, your body communicates to you that it’s time to push. In other words, you can feel the release and tightening of contractions.
Yes, you feel the urge to push. You may even experience fetal ejection reflex where your body begins to push for you. That is to say; you don’t need people counting for you and telling you when to push. Your body automatically tells you.
Safer for Baby
Pharmacological interventions such as an epidural can cause mom to have hypotension or low blood pressure. Consequently, reducing the baby’s oxygenation and heart rate. Given this point, a natural unmedicated birth is an excellent way to go.
You are mobile
Being able to move during labor is a significant natural birth benefit. It’s important to realize that mobility is a game-changer when increasing labor progression.
Not only will it help your baby navigate its way down through the birth canal, but it will help you cope with contractions.
Furthermore, you’re able to get up and shower right after having your baby without an epidural. You don’t have to wait for nurses to bath you and turn you from side to side. You’re able to get up and care for yourself as soon as baby arrives.
Can labor and birth in other positions
Having a natural birth allows you to choose what position is most comfortable for you to birth. You don’t have to remain in the lithotomy position during pushing.
In fact, we know that the lithotomy position or laying on your back is for provider convenience.
Also, being able to move to new positions in labor and birth helps reduce contraction and birthing pain. So don’t stay supine if it’s not comfortable for you.
You are connected
First and foremost, you’re involved with the process on a deeper level. You feel your contractions move your baby through the birth canal and closer toward your arms. It feels like you’ve transcended into a hypnotic state to cope.
You’re able to feel and connect with the whole process. Moreover, you work alongside your baby, helping them through the birth canal
It’s empowering! Yes, I said it! It is. Not to say that other women that do not have a natural, unmedicated birth can’t feel empowered. Sure, they can. But in this case, I’m saying having a natural birth has been empowering for me. Thereupon, realizing that I was way stronger than I thought.
These are excellent benefits of having a natural birth. In the long run, these benefits made me realize that having a natural birth was the right decision for me.
Do you want, or have you had a natural birth? If so, why?