A water birth occurs when you spend at least part of your labor, delivery, or both in a birth pool filled with warm water. You might be shocked by the number of women who choose to have water birth nowadays. Waterbirth might happen at a hospital, a birthing facility, or your own home. Of course, there should be a doctor, nurse-midwife, or midwife who should assist you in making sure that the process goes smoothly.
Waterbirth is not merely a craze among celebrities, contrary to popular belief. More and more individuals recognize the advantages of water birth. Unmedicated water births, according to many moms, reduce labor and delivery discomfort. While it may sound very hippie, let see what the advantages and disadvantages of this method of birth are;
When a pregnant woman enters the deep water of a birth pool, rather than a shallow bathtub, a chemical and hormonal reaction occurs that regulates the amount of the hormone oxytocin, which is released from the brain and helps manage the strength of contractions. As the mother’s body gets buoyant in the deep water and more oxytocin is released, more pain-inhibiting endorphins flood to her brain, placing her into a faster-altered state of consciousness and allowing her body to perform its job more easily as the body itself is very relaxed.
Evidence also shows that water labor reduces the need for interventions such as ventouse delivery and may reduce the requirement for an episiotomy. But, as there are so many good points about water birth, there are also disadvantages that should be considered.
Anyone considering giving birth at home should consider the worst-case scenario to ensure their baby’s and their own safety. Water births aren’t always riskier than non-water births, but they are a little bit riskier when they happen at home, which is the case for the majority of them as many hospitals do not give the option of water birth. The risk of at-home water birth is prevalent since home water births do not provide quick medical assistance.
Water delivery entails sitting in a tub, pushing, and giving birth—often just as with regular birth, there is excrement, which in this case will be mixed with the water where the baby will be. If a baby is delivered in that setting, the contaminated water may be swallowed, increasing the risk of illness.
Another risk with water birth is pneumonia. Although studies conducted have yet to reveal the actual number of pneumonia cases in water births, it is one of the dangers. To avoid pneumonia, the water must be kept between 95- and 100-degrees Fahrenheit and the infant must be taken to the surface as soon as possible after birth. Pneumonia is caused by meconium aspiration, fecal contamination, and germs in tub water and generally occurs during the first 24 to 48 hours after delivery. So, professionals should be around to make sure that each of these things mentioned above is monitored to avoid pneumonia.
Can Everyone Have Water Birth?
No, unfortunately, not all women get to have a water birth. Women who want to labor and deliver in water must be in good health, have had a normal pregnancy with no risks, and be in spontaneous labor at term. Women who want to give birth in the water should learn about the risks and advantages and discuss them with their medical team. There are specific circumstances in which a water birth is not recommended. If a woman has a condition that puts her in danger of losing consciousness or having seizures, this is one of them. Alternatively, there may be fears that the baby is sick or preterm.
Water-births are becoming very popular; let us know in the comments if you think that water-birth is only a craze or does it have health benefits.