Heinz Ketchup, HP Sauce, Hellmanns go hand in hand with labour and birth right….?*
Stay with me here, you have a burger, some chips and you are so excited to have them. You have been looking forward to having them for a long time. You want them to be the most amazing treat ever… You’re at the end of the bottle. So obviously, you get the sauce out by laying the bottle on it’s side right…? That’ll get the sauce out out and create the best experience ever… Right?
I’m no magical witch, but saying accio to the sauce is highly unlikely to have a happy ending. The physiology of labour and birth requires freedom, movement and following a deep rooted rhythm that is inbuilt in all birthing goddesses ??
So if your care giver is encouraging you to be predominantly on a bed, to have continuous fetal monitoring or an epidural you need to be aware of the implications.
The Care Quality Commission published results from a survey, (from 17,151 women who gave birth during February 2019, as well as January 2019 if trusts had smaller numbers of births during February). Most women who responded to the survey gave birth lying down, either with their legs in stirrups (37%, consistent with 2018) or lying flat/ supported by pillows (23%, consistent with 2018).
The proportion of women saying they gave birth while standing, squatting or kneeling increased to 18% from 16% in 2018. However, this proportion has fluctuated over the years (from 15% in 2013 and 2015 to 17% in 2017).
As might be expected, a large proportion of women who had an assisted birth were lying with legs in stirrups (89%). Horrifyingly, almost a quarter (24%) of women who had an unassisted vaginal birth said they gave birth lying with legs in stirrups. WTF?
Any restrictions on your movements can and will impact on your ability to have a physiological, undisturbed birth.
Follow your own body’s finely tuned techniques
Trust that YOU are able to birth YOUR baby
YOU were BORN to do this
Womankind are exceptionally awesome when they believe in themselves
YOU are a powerful force of nature.
So next time you’re eating a butty, burger or some chips and you reach for the sauce….
* other sauces are available