Water birthing is an alternative birthing method wherein the expecting mom sits in a pool of lukewarm water during a part of her labour and delivery. Water helps hasten labour pains and works as a natural pain reliever. The procedure can be done at a hospital, a birthing centre or at home. You will need a doctor or a trained birthing professional to provide the emotional, physical and informational support during this process. If you are expecting, and are considering this option, read on to get all the information you wanted about water-birthing.
Benefits Of Water Birthing:
- During labour, water helps you relax, thus ensuring rhythmic contractions which are less stressful for you and your baby
- It also helps in reducing your labour time and all your energy is channelized in the contractions
- Privacy offered by this birthing option is unparalleled. You can create a suitable ambience, include (and exclude) people in the birthing area, and welcome the new family member in the warmth of your house.
- Luke warm water-birthing also soothes your back and stomach muscles, just like a soothing bath would comfort you on a normal day
- Water-birthing reduces the risk of tearing of your perineum as water softens your tissues and help the baby crown
- Your upright position during water-birthing makes better use of gravity which assists in easier and quicker delivery
- Since the baby is delivered under water, it is less traumatic for the new born who finds itself in an environment similar to the womb. The transition is made easier for the baby in this birthing option
Possible Hazards of Water Birthing:
- A major concern attached to this option is inhalation of water by the new born. While this is a valid worry, many studies have shown that babies continue receiving oxygen from the umbilical cord unless it has been cut
- Risk of infection if the pool or water are unclean. It is thus indispensable to ensure hygiene before beginning the procedure
- In case of an emergency during water-birthing, you might have to call it off and opt for a regular delivery instead. This might be stressful for both, the mother and the baby
- Some doctors believe that the perineum may have a higher chance of tearing when a woman delivers in water
- The umbilical cord may have a higher chance of snapping in water than outside it. Doctors must be trained to handle an emergency situation and avoid pulling the cord.
Water birthing is a natural delivery process that is beneficial to both, the mother and the baby. Though you might have certain concerns about the procedure, talking to a doctor and getting the right health insurance will give you peace of mind during the birthing process.
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