Congratulations! You’re expecting! Maybe it’s your first, maybe it’s your last, but there’s so much you can learn from joining a VBAC Support Group on Facebook.
Firstly, What does VBAC stand for? VBAC stands for “Vaginal Birth After C-Section,” and it is a term used for women with previous cesarean deliveries but want to birth vaginally with subsequent children. For some VBAC women, they’ve only had one previous c-section delivery and two or three other vaginal births. Other VBAC women may have had multiple cesarean deliveries and are looking to have their first, or another vaginal birth. These women sometimes identify as a variation of VBA2C (for 2 previous cesareans) or HBA3C (Home Birth After 3 C-Sections), and there are many more variations.
Secondly, Why Am I Supporting Joining a VBAC Group Especially if You’re a First Time Mum? I have never had a c-section, and I am not expecting another baby yet; however, I am in several VBAC groups on Facebook. Thankfully, VBAC support groups are open to birth workers and anyone who supports vaginal birth. The significance of VBAC mums are that they have EXPERIENCED c-sections, they have EXPERIENCED vaginal births, and they have EXPERIENCED the kind of treatment received by doctors and midwives, often pushing them to do a lot of research, take proper antenatal birthing classes such as Bradley classes, and stick to their guns.
What is Failure to Progress? According to doctors and midwives, Failure to Progress is also known as Prolonged Labour, when labour lasts for approximately 20 hours or more after regular contractions begin, and approximately 14 hours or more if you’ve given birth previously. Prolonged latent phase happens during first stage labour where mother can get exhausted and emotionally drained, and prolonged labour during second stage can be a “cause for concern.”
According to WebMD, Prolonged labour may happen if:
- The baby is very big and cannot move through the birth canal. (Cephalopelvic disproportion)
- The baby is in an abnormal position. Normally, the baby is head-down facing your back. (Posterior presentation: back-to-back)
- The birth canal is too small for the baby to move through. (Android pelvis, narrow pelvis)
- Your contractions are very weak. (Inefficient contractions)
NOW HERE’S the HARD PART. Scratch everything that I just stated up there and everything that you hear from doctors and midwives. Remember, they’re a part of a system, either hospital, birth centre, or NHS and they need to be able to put mothers on a schedule, a timeline, and checklist, so they can do their job. Continue reading
On 2nd May 2015, the nation celebrated the birth of the Princess of Cambridge, Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana! What was on everyone’s minds at the presentation of the baby just 10 hours after birth? How did Kate look so good?
Daily Mail’s “Call the Midwife” article stated,
Kate had a meticulous birth plan. She had opted to be seen first by the midwives, and as a source said: ‘What the duchess wants, the duchess gets.’
I’d venture to say, WHAT THE MOTHER WANTS, THE MOTHER GETS! What’s the actual difference between Kate and mothers all around the world? Nothing! Does she have superhuman powers? Of course not! There was no special way she got that baby out of her body that other mothers don’t have. What she did have, though, is the midwives’, doctors’, and Wills’ RESPECT to do what she wished regarding her birth. Every mother deserves this kind of respect, to be treated like a duchess at the time of labour and birth.
If a Duchess can have the birth she wants, can you? Yes! Here’s how: Continue reading
Several weeks ago, I came across a claim that Induction reduces the risk of C-section! I sincerely thought, this must be a joke; however, it was referencing an actual journal publication. You can find the actual publication here.
Since I’ve always heard people say, “I had to be induced, and then it ended in c-section,” I thought I would do a series of polls to see if there was any indication that induction REDUCED the number of c-sections.
First, I did a poll directed to those mothers who ended up with emergency c-sections to see how many of them received drugs to induce. You can find the results here. “If your birth ended in an emergency c-section, were you given any drugs to start labour or speed up labour prior to the need for a c-section?” Results: 68% Yes to 32% No. Continue reading
Check out the results from this week’s poll about drugs and delivery method! 47% ended delivering vaginally, 26% delivered with forceps or vacuum extraction, and 26% had an emergency c-section. None had a schedule c-section after receiving drugs and there was one vote that entered a different answer. She entered, “Vaginal birth with manual assistance whilst being prepped for an emergency c/s” which would go into the category of “Vaginal with forceps or vacuum extraction.”
Therefore, the results would have been: 47% vaginal only, 27% vaginal with manual assistance, 26% emergency c-section.
What does this poll mean? I can’t make any conclusions from this data since I don’t know the background information from the voters. It does show that if you receive drugs to start or speed up labour, that your chance of having an emergency c-section is 26%. However, this sampling is small with only 152 votes. Some could be multigravida and others primigravida. It also shows that if you choose to use drugs to induce, you still have almost a 50/50 chance to birth vaginally without assistance. This is great news! In order to conclude that receiving drugs to start or speed up labour increases or decreases your likelihood of having a c-section, I would have to know what is the likelihood of c-section from mothers who did not receive drugs to induce labour. This is my next poll.
If you’re wondering what the Bradley Method® is, here’s a link to babycenter.com for a good overview!
I’ve taken the liberty of copying and pasting its contents below. I encourage you to check out the comments underneath the article by babycenter.com and see for yourself how good the classes are for you to achieve the best possible birth!
What is the Bradley method of childbirth?
This method embraces the idea that childbirth is a natural process and that, with the right preparation, most women can avoid pain medication and routine interventions during labor and birth. It’s named after American obstetrician Robert Bradley, who developed the method in the late 1940s. Continue reading
An overwhelming majority of people I meet who have had c-sections are so grateful that they were able to get their baby out safely. They say that if it weren’t for them, they might be dead or their baby might be dead. However, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), caesarean sections should only be performed when medically necessary – no more than about 10%-15% of all births. So what about the 10% of women who are still getting c-sections in the UK, but they aren’t medically necessary? Why does it seem like the c-section rate is growing still? Women are still getting unnecessary c-sections and I think it’s due to lack of knowledge and preparation. Doctors tell every c-section patient that it was medically necessary, but that’s not what the statistics show.
Unfortunately, the doctors tell c-section patients a reason to justify the need for the c-section. I’m going to list a couple of common reasons given for c-sections and why they are not valid reasons for this major abdominal surgery. Continue reading
Is this even possible? Yes. Today, “fetal distress” is a leading cause for a c-section. So how can it be avoided?
How to Avoid Fetal Distress
1. Refuse EFM, Electronic Fetal Monitoring. This is your birth. This should be your choice. Many hospitals may ‘require’ you to be monitored using EFM; however, you have the choice to refuse! If you don’t have to guts to refuse a health professional, then I advise hiring a doula to speak for you. Why is this important? There is significant data that shows the increased risk of c-section with an increase of EFM use. Here’s a quote from the 2005 Practice Bulletin #70 of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists:
“Despite its widespread use, there is controversy about the efficacy of EFM. Moreover, there is evidence that the use of EFM increases the rate of cesarean and operative vaginal deliveries. Given that the available data do not clearly support the use of EFM over intermittent ausculation, either option is acceptable in a patient without complications.” (Obstetrics and Gynecology, Intrapartum Fetal Heart-Rate Monitoring 106 (6), 1463-1561.)
Ditch that 40-week estimated due date that you were given, even if they measured using an ultrasound! A study that came out in June of 2013 showed that the gestation period for normal, unassisted pregnancy through birth can vary up to five weeks. If this is the case, why aren’t more midwives and consultants giving ‘overdue’ mothers more information?
The study found that though the average length of pregnancy for these 125 mothers was 38 weeks and 2 days, the range of the data has a variance of 5 weeks (to be exact, 37 days). This study included 6 preterm births and 1 scheduled cesarean section, so the data is still not as untouched as I would like to find; but even with these few outliers, the conclusion showed that normal pregnancies are not limited to the 40-week gestation that we’re all used to.