To keep birth “normal” we must first determine what normal birth is. There is a clear definition:
Childbirth is normal when it starts spontaneously, progresses at least 1 cm/h or more and the woman gives birth to her baby vaginally, by her own efforts and without harm to either mother or baby.
In this way, a birth does not last more than 12 hours max.
This definition is simple and clear. But how to achieve this? How to increase the chances that you will have a positive experience. Childbirth is never completely predictable. But a professional approach can make a huge difference. On this website this will be explained.
Good cooperation between the parents and the midwife and/or obstetrician is very important. Giving birth is one of the most profound emotinal experiences in a woman’s life. One that stays with you for ever. Every woman deserves a positive experience and it is the shared responsibility of all involved to work together to achieve this goal. You, like any woman who is pregnant for the first time, are probably flooded with scary stories.
Hours of pain, large episiotomy, vacuum delivery, cesarean section, bitchy or indifferent members of staff, you name it. How is it possible that the human race is not extinct?
Antibiotics, adequate analgesia, vacuums and caesareans have all come to full bloom after the 2nd World War.
In the 18th century, forceps were developed, but these were not used for ordinary women. Only the wealthy could afford to see a doctor.
Were pregnancy and labour then always a breeze? No, certainly not. But most women and babies survived.
Infant and maternal mortality are rare in developed countries these days. The top three causes of death of babies are: very preterm birth, congenital birth defects and infections. The main causes of death for women related to pregnancy and birth are: infections, problems with high blood pressure and problems with blood clotting. We have gained a lot with hygienic measures such as hand washing, modern antibiotics, drugs for high blood pressure and the possibility of blood transfusions. For preterm infants, their chances have improved tremendously with modern NICU’s
But remember, it’s a small group that will benefit from these modern inventions. Most women between 18 and 40, get pregnant once or more. They will have few problems in pregnancy. They will give birth in their due period to a healthy baby with a normal birth weight.
Women were created to give birth. That is normal.