Want to go epi-less and have a drug-free natural birth? Read on, dear mummies-to-be, to find out how you can!
1. Have a plan, but be flexible!
A birth plan is extremely useful, as long as you know that it can’t be set in stone! Having your preferences for labour, birth, and postpartum care be known is important, so do your research and speak to your doctor about it.
You should have a opinion about how things will go, but also be aware of the other options available, just in case your preferred plan can’t be achieved.
There’s a ton of information that you can find out about drug-free births simply by reading books, asking your gynae, and watching YouTube videos.
Learn about the different pieces of information which will shape your birth: your OB/midwife’s delivery record, percentage of C-sections, etc; your hospital’s C-section rate and policies for labour and postpartum care; read about the risks associated with induction, the epidural, a water birth, forceps, etc.
This is an event that affects both you and baby, so it’s all in your hands to learn as much as you can about it as possible.
3. Keep Fit and Active
Stay as fit as possible during your pregnancy by doing squats and light weights consistently – you’ll not only get stronger, you’ll also feel better and more prepared (physically and mentally) to give birth.
4. Surround yourself with positive people
It may be difficult to keep away the negativity, especially with easy access to forums, groups, and comments online, but do your best to steer clear from them. Don’t let other people bring you down during your pregnancy, and definitely try to pick up a book on childbirth by Ina May Gaskin.
Surround yourself with girlfriends who’ve gone through childbirth, speak to your mum about it, and keep reminding yourself that labour is possible and doable without drugs. If you need to talk to negative people who’ll throw doubt on your desire for a drug-free labour, do your best to avoid the topic of giving birth while you’re around them.
5. Attend a Birth Class
If this is your first time giving birth, you should take a class with your partner, as you’ll learn all sorts of things which will help you during birth! The classes will cover topics such as the stages of labour, dilation, thinning of the cervix, various positions for labour, and ways to combat the pain.
The whole point of this is to train yourself mentally, to prepare for the birth process – there will be quite a lot of pain and other sensations, so keep practicing those techniques from the birth classes. Giving birth is definitely a mental game.
6. Find an experienced doula
Doulas are superwomen who provide continuous emotional and physical support for women about to give birth – they’re wells of information and reassurances, know how to comfort you using massages and breathing techniques, will accommodate to your wishes during birth as much as possible (keeping the lights low, playing soothing music), and will help you ask the right questions when you’re talking with your doctor if you wish for them to be present.
Pregnancy To Parenthood Seminar Series
If you wish to know more about your journey through pregnancy, as well as detailed explanations of what to expect during labour and delivery, this seminar is for you!
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