LABOUR AND DELIVERY
Labour and Delivery. All women with children have gone through it since Eve. We all experience it in different ways. Some of our labours are fast, some slow. Some of it is a beautiful experience that we dreamed of, and to others is scary and timely. At the end, we all receive the same gift. A beautiful little infant that wants nothing more than to be in their mothers arms. However in today’s generation, women don’t know the rights they have to an informed birth, nor the different ways they can birth and be with their baby when it is born.
When you get an epidural, you are often slowing your labour down. It is taking away your pain, however it is making the baby so sleepy and relaxed that it won’t have the energy to descend. This can spark many issues. When a labour doesn’t progress, after time the baby can go into distress. Distress can cause the baby to excrete meconium (baby’s first bowl movement) in utero which is dangerous if they ingest it. It also means that you will be receiving a boreal of fluids. Sometimes it’s liters upon liters.
Once your baby is born, if it was a medicated birth, it will be extra tired. A tired baby is one who may not want to latch right away. That is ok. It just means you need to be extra patient in the learning process. Babies were designed to not need to eat in the first 24hr’s after birth. It is a time to learn their surroundings and get comfortable on their mom’s skin and around her breast. It’s a beautiful thing to watch a baby explore it’s new surroundings.
I am by no means saying that a woman should have a medication free birth, however, I am saying that they should go in informed and understand the risks and outcomes associated with each intervention.
Stay tuned to part 3 on my next article Life After Birth…………
Immediately after your baby is born, If nothing else, spend the first week skin to skin and breastfeed your baby only. After your milk has been established, discuss with your partner about other forms of feeding. Many men feel left out when it comes to an exclusively breastfed newborn, as they associate feeding with bonding. There are so many other ways to bond with your baby. Bathing, changing, napping, walking and even dancing and singing to her or him. A newborn loves the comfort of the partner that they were listening to for 9 months.
I just worked with a Mom who tried for years to conceive a child. She finally did and had a wonderful pregnancy. Once her labour started, the Dr’s advised her that she needed an epidural, needed Pitocin and an assortment of other things. Unfortunately what they didn’t feel the need to say was, she had a choice to what interventions she wanted or didn’t want. As a result, her labour was increased; her daughter went into distress because she just wasn’t ready to come out. She ended up having an emergency C section from all the complications that were not necessarily the right choice from the beginning. Afterwards, she was told to supplement as her baby had lost to much weight. She was referred to the outpatient breastfeeding clinic where they told her she was doing everything right. Yet they never addressed her pain and low milk supply. I unfortunately here this far to often. When you receive interventions (a boreal of fluids as I mentioned in my last article), your baby will receive some of these fluids as well. This will make her seem as though she weighs more than she does. If you do receive fluids, make sure you ask them to delay the weighing by 12hr’s or even a day. Remember, your baby does not need to eat in the first 24 hours. Her body is designed to live off what it received in utero. The first 24 hours is about the bond. So take that precious baby in your arms and hold her or him like they were meant to. Skin to Skin. If your baby is moments old, let them find their way to your breast themselves. That is what they were designed to do. It is called baby led latch….