natural childbirth

Natural Childbirth Tips

If you are planning on delivering your baby naturally, these are some tips that helped me have a successful natural childbirth.

Pre Labor tips

First of all, you have to eat right. You really have to nourish your body well with the right food. Nourishing your body is so important at this time because you are creating a new life.

natural childbirth exercise

Secondly, drinking a lot of water is paramount. Your body is creating a lot more blood at this time. So it is very important to keep yourself hydrated during pregnancy. I always kept a bottle of water to hand so I would never go thirsty. During most of my pregnancy I was working and continually went back and forth to the water cooler and kept refilling my bottle.

Exercise is another really important factor if you’re planning on having a natural childbirth. If you are planning on delivering your baby naturally, try to plan on exercising at least three times per week. Walking is probably the best exercise, but anything that doesn’t bounce you around too much or put a strain on you now that you are carrying extra weight would be good exercise for a pregnant woman.

My birthing coach and birthing teacher always told us to think about childbirth like a marathon. You don’t just wake up one morning and decide to run a marathon. It takes a lot of preparation and planning for the big event. And it is built up to slowly over a period of time. This is the same approach you should take with exercise for natural childbirth.

Another important tip which cannot be stressed enough is to educate yourself. If you want to have a successful natural childbirth experience you need to know all your options. The unfortunate truth is that most doctors are not used to people coming into hospital demanding a natural birth. And believe me, sometimes you will have to demand it! So if you are not educated enough, and have not taken any classes on natural childbirth, you are going to go into hospital and eventually get into a painful situation, and as soon as that happens the doctors and nurses are going to reel off a long list of drugs they think you should be taking. So you have to educate yourself in order to stand your ground on having a natural delivery experience.

Finally, while still in the Pre Labor phase, creating a birth plan is so important. What a birth plan essentially is, is an outline of what you want and how you would like your birthing experience to be. For example, whether or not you want an IV; whether or not you wants drugs at any stage at all; who you want to be with you during labor; whether or not you want the lights dim or bright. So in fact anything that you can imagine, anything to do with your natural birth experience, you can include in your birth plan. All this really helps because when you are in so much pain and experiencing labor you are not likely to remember all the things you wanted. To think about all this ahead of time and to give your birthing team a list in advance is really crucial.

Tips for During Labor

Walk, walk, walk during labor. As soon as you feel that first contraction, walk your butt off. I walked so much, probably during 75% of my labor. Until I went into the transitional stage, the third stage of labour, I walked a most of the time. What this does is help the baby to move down your birth canal with the help of the walking motions and gravity. This really really helps. Lying on your back is not at all the best position for labor. You’re not really helping out the baby at all if you’re just laying on your back.

Drink a lot of water during labor. Just make sure you do not get anywhere near dehydrated by keeping water to hand all the while. Water helps so much because you don’t have to go through the whole thing necessarily of having an IV stuck into you if you are naturally hydrated. For me, I don’t like needles, and I know most people don’t. To a lot of women, me included, having an IV is really restricting especially when applied via a needle. So drinking plenty of water really helped me to have a successful natural childbirth.

I also had some honey with me because a lot of times in hospital they don’t allow you to eat much if anything at all at times. You probably won’t be hungry during labor, but you do need the energy. So I had some honey next to the bed and I just asked my husband to give me a few spoonfuls from time to time.

Tips for Positions to Take During Labor

I can’t stress this enough, but you want to be squatting, you want to be in the tub, you want to be on that birthing ball – you want to labor in as many positions as you possibly can. Please don’t lay on the bed during the entire thing. It’s just going to prolong your labor and it’s not going to help the baby move down the birthing canal the way that the baby naturally should.

natural childbirth

Having a really quiet environment really helped me when I opted for natural childbirth. I didn’t like it when the nurses would just go off into their own conversations while I was in pain during my first birthing experience. So I really stressed having a very quiet room.

Support from a Doula

Having a coach or a doula that really knows you and is fully aware of the experience of natural childbirth that you want to have is really really important. Somebody present that will be on your side, supporting you, can make such a difference. My husband was my birthing coach and he really helped me. He gave me the massages that I needed. He helped me to stay relaxed. And he knew exactly what I wanted my birthing experience to be. So all of that was really really helpful. So I can’t stress enough how important it is to have a good birthing coach.

Prepare Yourself Mentally

When I was preparing for labor, and actually going into labour, I said to myself that natural childbirth is going to be my only option. I was that determined. I told myself that having medication was an absolute last resort. Preparing myself mentally like that really helped. During labour, it never entered my mind to want drugs.

One Contraction at a Time

My final tip is this. Just take it one contraction at a time. The contractions come and they are intense but your body knows how much pain you can handle. So you get that contraction and then it goes down giving you a little time to rest and recuperate until the next contraction comes. So just take each contraction one at a time. Just say to yourself – this is going to be over – I’m just going to endure this one, get through it, and then it’ll be over and I can prepare for the next contraction.

So those are my tips. I strongly recommend that you take a course of lessons such as the Bradley method of natural childbirth or something similar.

There are so many benefits to having your baby naturally. I found that I wasn’t groggy after the baby was born. And I recovered so quickly.