A review in the Cochrane Library based on examination of 10,000 women in random trails, have found that women who deliver their children in alternative birthing centers instead of conventional hospitals need less medications and other unnatural interventions.
Hospital rooms were most women deliver are usually dull and drab, present an appearance of illness and death instead of new life. Alternative birthing centers have that at home atmosphere containing serene decor, comfort and relaxation.
In alternative birthing centers women receive about 18% less epidural anesthesia, 22% less oxtocin and 17% are less likely to have an episiotomy. They are also 11% less likely to have a c-section.
Professor Ellen Hodnott, RN, PhD, FCAHS, author of study and chair of prenatal nursing research at the University of Toronto, states that women who give birth in alternative centers are twice more likely to be satisfied with the total experience as opposed to those women who use conventional hospital rooms. Also, those who use alternative centers are more apt to breastfeed their children.
Professor Hodnott explains that the environment of where the birth occurs not only affects woman’s labor but also the behavior of their care providers. In those alternative settings, the staff may listen more to the women empowering them to make their own decisions.
All women in the study were randomly assigned birth settings regardless of their personal choice, it is proven that the setting of birth does play a major part in the quality of the pregnancy and how natural it is at the end.
Some alternative birthing choices:
There are many kinds of midwifes throughout the nation. The World Health Organization notes the importance of midwives for the promotion of health in women and babies throughout the world and are strongly advocating the midwives be primary healthcare providers for pregnant women worldwide.
Midwives fall into three types: Midwives with formal training as in school but not nurses. Midwives that are nurse-midwives who have taken the course of midwifery in their country. Indigenous (traditional) midwife whose practice is within traditional ethnic or cultural group and may or may not have had formal training. All 50 states license nurse-midwives, certification of CNM or CNP.
Midwives attend an assortment of birth settings such as at home or birthing centers. Midwives most of the time have an arrangement to transfer care over to a surgeon or physician if complications should happen. Midwives give more personal attention. Midwives will show how to cope with the pain like getting into water, massage and changing positions.
Water birth is giving birth in a tub of warm water. Some women will go through labor in the tub but get out for the birth while others remain and deliver in the water. The theory of water birth is simple, the baby is in the amniotic sac for nine months and giving birth in a similar setting reduces the stress on the mother and is more gentle for the baby. Water-birth should be done under supervision of health care provider.
There are numerous advantages some of them include water is soothing, comfortable and relaxing. Water in later stages of labor reduces the pain. Water lowers high blood pressure.
Do not use water birth if:
If you have herpes for water makes the herpes easy to transfer.
If baby is breech, however, it has been done. Discuss with healthcare provider.
If you have diagnoses of excessive bleeding or maternal infection.
If baby is expected to arrive two weeks or more before actual due date.
If you have toxemia or preeclampsia discuss water birth with healthcare provider.
Birthing centers are safe, comfortable and spacious alternative to those hospital rooms. They provide a home like setting, some complete with rockers. Natural childbirth is the choice method, therefore it is extremely rare to receive an epidural. Women can move around and switch positions at will, even spend time in a jacuzzi etc. The baby is frequently monitors by hand held device called Doppler. Other comforting measures are taken such as massage, hydrotherapy, warm and cold compress, relaxation techniques and visualization techniques.
Many birthing centers use registered nurses and CNM’s.
The centers do have medical equipment available such as IV lines, infant warmers and resuscitators, oxygen for mother and baby infant warms etc.
These centers provide natural childbirth. If a woman wants an epidural she will be taken to the hospital or if complications would set in.
Birthing centers that are accredited by Commission for the Accreditation of Birth Centers (CBAC) are recommended. Some states do regulate these centers.Sources: