Water Birth: For Less Painful Deliveries!

Physical pain and mental pain is unbearable. Some people face it easily but most suffer a lot. Labour pain is one of the most difficult pain women experience and the intensity of the pain differ from woman to woman and it is different for each pregnancy. It is this pain which makes women think of going for C sections which make labour easier. There are even other methods.

What Is Water Birth?

Water birth is giving birth under water in a bath tub filled with hot water. This practice has been in vogue for many thousand years and this is preferred by most women as the pain is greatly reduced. Women who give birth at home in the western world prefer this and mid wives are trained to deal with complications coming out of it. Women going in for water birth suffer less pain.

Some women plan their deliveries in a bath tub while some opt for bath tub only during the time of labour. When in water women feel that they are able to manage the contractions better and they stay in water during the contractions and just before the delivery they change to normal delivery. Some are seen giving water births. You are free to choose any option that you would like.

Who Is Eligible For A Water Birth?

  • A woman should have completed more than 37 weeks of pregnancy.
  • The head of the baby should be facing down.
  • Single baby deliveries. If a woman has twins or triplets then, she cannot go for water birth.
  • A woman with no medical complications like high blood pressure.
  • A woman who has undergone C section earlier not allowed to go in for water birth.
  • Healthy pregnant women can opt for water birth.
  • Premature babies are not born through water birth.
  • Women with excessive vaginal bleeding cannot go in for water birth.
  • A woman having high fever is advised against going in for water birth.

Why Women Prefer Water Birth?

As babies are used to lying in amniotic fluid in the womb water birth does not make any impact on them. They are used to the fluids already. The buoyancy of water make women relaxed and they feel less pressure. They are able to move easily as buoyancy help them to feel lighter and they could change positions easily without much discomfort. The pelvic floor muscles are relaxed and so they could manage pain better.

Most women report shorter labour and so water birth has become a norm. Reduced usage of drugs is another reason for the popularity of water birth. It acts as a drug free method to manage pain. Oxytocin is released naturally during contractions and this helps to manage pain. When a woman feels relaxed and safe, naturally she is well equipped to manage pain better. When oxytocin flow is easier feel good endorphins are released. The main reason why women opt for this is reduced pain.

Is Water Birth Encouraged By Physicians?

Medical professionals do not encourage water birth as they feel that the chances of infections are huge. The baby might contact skin infections and might get some breathing difficulty if not taken out at the right time. As the baby comes in contact with bodily fluids of the mother and if it is not cleaned properly then chances are very high that this becomes risky for the baby. Baby’s heartbeat could not be monitored during labour in water tub so there are chances for risks during the delivery.

Recent research suggests that there is 11% increase in perineal tearing among women going in for water birth.

What Precautions Should You Take For Water Birth?

The tub should be cleaned thoroughly with nontoxic cleaners. Clean, filtered, chlorinated water should be used. The water should not be too hot and the temperature should be bearable. The water should be changed if it is contaminated. Feces should be removed at once and the water should be maintained clean throughout the delivery. If these precautions are not taken then there are chances for risks later. Choose a tub having filters as cleaning will become easier.

The mid wife should also have experience in this type of delivery and should be aware of the complications beforehand. In case of complications rush to medical help immediately.

So water birth is safe only when all precautions are taken and an experienced mid wife is hired for the job.