Natural Labor and Delivery Tips

Basic RGBSo, you want to have your baby naturally, avoiding all medication, anesthesia, and with minimal medical intervention?  It can be done!  Here are some tips to increase your success with having your baby naturally:

  1. Labor at home as long as you can.  Avoid rushing into the hospital the moment you feel a contraction.  As long as you have a healthy pregnancy and there is not a medical need to get to the hospital right away, try to stay home for most of your labor.  Your healthcare provider will give you guidelines as to when to come to the hospital.  Your contractions should be very regular, getting closer together, and increasing in intensity.  As a rule of thumb, if you think you are in labor, but are not sure, then it is not time yet.  You will know when those labor pains come.  The labor pains will take your breath away and you will have difficulty talking and walking.
  2. Keep moving.  During labor, keep walking and changing positions for as long as you can tolerate.  Avoid laying down in bed (despite what they show you in the movies).  When you stand and move, the pressure of the baby’s head will put pressure on your cervix, helping to progress dilation.  Moving will help ease the pain of contractions as well.
  3. Try different positions.  You may not feel most comfortable pushing your baby while laying on your back.  Some women have better success pushing in a squat position.  If you are having bad contractions in your back, try leaning over the hospital bed or leaning over an exercise ball.  This will take the pressure off your back and give some relief.  Move your body through different positions for optimal comfort.
  4. Relax.  As difficult as this may seem, you will feel better if you relax.  Do not build up anxiety about what your body is going through or what you are about to do.  Your body was designed to carry and deliver a baby.  Try to remember that and keep your nerves in check.  You will enjoy the experience more if you are in a good mindset and remain calm.
  5. Have a partner.  Bring your partner, friend, mother, sister or whoever else is going to give you the best support and encouragement. You will have moments that you are scared and in pain.  You will need a strong support person to help you through.