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What Are The Benefits of Having a Baby Without Using an Epidural?

Author: Marla Vogt-Roberts, MSN, CNM

If you’ve told your friends and family that you want to have a natural childbirth, you might get some strange looks. Despite the fact that approximately 90% of women are capable of having a baby without medication… over 80% of women do receive medications during the process. So, the question isn’t, “Why have a natural childbirth?” 

It’s, “Why not…” 

There are a number of benefits to natural childbirth for both the mother and the child.

Natural Birth: Your Benefits

  • Shorter labor. Pain medication can get in the way of your body’s natural hormones. This can cause your contractions to slow or can make it difficult to push in sync with your body, which can prolong labor.
  • Epidural use increases the likelihood that medical interventions will be used. Your contractions slow which require Pitocin to strengthen them. Other interventions may then be needed including internal fetal monitoring, assisted vaginal delivery with vacuum or forceps, or cesarean delivery.
  • Faster recovery. You will be fully present and ready to care for your baby. You will be able to breastfeed and bond with your baby. Drugs and medical interventions can slow down your recovery time.
  • More “presence” in the experience. If you’ve decided to have a natural birth, it may be partly inspired by hearing friends talk about how incredible their own natural birth experience was. It’s true that many women feel a greater sense of empowerment and connection with their baby immediately following birth when they choose to be an active participant and partner in making the decisions for this special life moment. 

Natural Birth: Baby’s Benefits

  • Breastfeeding: Babies who are born without exposure to an epidural or pain medication are usually more ready to begin breastfeeding soon after the birth.
  • Microbiome: A natural birth allows normal body bacteria to be transferred between you and your baby – which is a good thing!
  • Chronic Disease Risk Reduction: Delivery by cesarean section can increase likelihood for obesity, allergies, asthma, type 1 diabetes, and other chronic conditions. Unfortunately, the c-section rate today in the United States is over 30%.

Learn More About Natural Birth With a Certified Nurse Midwife

So, why have a natural birth? Why not? There are many, many more potential benefits in addition to the ones briefly covered in this blog post. Learn more about giving birth naturally with a certified nurse midwife when you call 480-632-2004.Schedule your appointment with East Valley Women’s Midwifery Group in Mesa, AZ today.

Please consult with your healthcare provider before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.

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