When you’re expecting a child, the list of potential locations to give birth at can go on and on, and the final decision of where to go when “it’s time” differs from person to person. As delivering a child is one of the most extensively laborious experiences a woman can go through, it is important to ensure you’re doing it somewhere that you feel most comfortable. For many women, that golden location happens to be one of their local birthing centers.
Birth centers offer a more natural approach to childbirth without the use of common medicines used in hospitals before, during and after labor, with the exception of a local analgesic to help suture any tears that may occur in the perineum. They can be found in a building of their own or within a medical facility that is staffed by nurses working with an obstetrician, direct-entry midwives or nurse-midwives. There are no inductions, no cesarean deliveries and little episiotomies.
A Doppler ultrasound is the only form of fetal monitoring that is performed at birthing centers. The use of catheter and oxygen equipment is only utilized in the event where a newborn needs their airways cleared.
For moms not looking to stay in a hospital for three or more days, birth centers allow an early release home as soon as just six hours after delivery. This is perfect if you’re looking to spend mainly one-on-one time with your new bundle of joy for the first few days of their life without the seemingly constant interruption from hospital staff.
Pregnant women that like the idea of the following aspects typically find themselves touring a birthing center only to decide it is most definitely right for them:
● Delivery similar to a home birth
● A home-like environment during delivery with minimal staff
● Delivering while standing up or in water
● Being able to eat and drink during labor
● Excellent postpartum care, like helping you lose that extra belly fat from your pregnancy.
If you have preeclampsia, diabetes or a high-risk pregnancy for any other reason, a birth center may not come highly recommended.
Do you want an individually tailored, natural birth experience? While we are told to have a “birth plan” in place, hospitals have a way of falling off course when it is not always necessary.
Birthing centers prevent this by following your instructions as best as possible and by treating you not as a patient with a medical condition, but a woman who was built for bearing and delivering children that has a right to do so however you please.