Hello! Below you will find a collection of articles on the wonderful journey of giving birth.
We approach this subject from the foundation of evolution. The female mind and body is marvelously intelligent and complex, which intrinsically knows how to give birth. We believe in nature over medical intervention (which is sometimes necessary, not always). Ideally, labour and birth should be an empowering experience where the woman is in control. It is her birth experience, not the doctors.
A dogma exists in Western society that child birth is a painful and fearful experience.
God reportedly said to Eve, after she ate the forbidden fruit:
I will greatly multiply your pain in childbirth. In pain you shall bring forth children (Genesis 2: 16).
I have read some wonderful books which presents labour as a passionate, gentle and positive experience. If a woman goes into labour with fear in her mind - her body naturally tightens up and she feels more pain. A positive, surrendering gentle approach which concentrates on breathing, visualizations and affirmations have wonderful results. I will include more quotes in the future.
Below you will find articles and research on natural birthing positions, home birthing, water and other alternative practices. As well as information on caesarean sections, contractions, cervical dilation, stimulation of hormones, the brain and bonding.
The following internet search results suggests a low interest in 'giving
birth', though results for 'baby name' (33,406) are significantly higher.
The top ten related searches are;
birth (5,000), birth announcements (5,000), giving birth (3,700), birth control (3,000), woman giving birth (2,800), birth certificates (2,000), vaginal birth (1,700), birth control pill (1,500), child birth (1,100), home birth (1,000), natural birth (1,000)
We hope you find the following articles useful and empowering!
Karene Jade Howie
From the website: 'This is a book which broke new ground at the time it was published, by focusing on the physiological events of pregnancy and birth and demonstrating how a woman’s body is ideally designed to give birth in an upright position, rather than semi reclining like a ‘stranded beetle’. It clearly describes the advantages of the squatting position and suggests a program of yoga based exercises a woman can practice throughout her pregnancy in order to prepare herself for birth.'
by Janet Balaskas and Yehudi Gordon
Newborns who are delivered via planned cesarean section are more likely to be transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit and to experience lung disorders compared with those delivered via planned vaginal delivery, according to findings published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
The researchers examined the outcome of deliveries during a 6-month period, along with data from the Medical Birth Registry of Norway on intended mode of delivery.
'The appropriateness of the rising rate of cesarean delivery worldwide has been debated widely,' Dr. Toril Kolas, of Innlandet Hospital Trust, Lillehammer, Norway, and colleagues write. 'For the child, the stress of vaginal delivery seems superior to elective cesarean delivery in many situations. Therefore, we emphasize the importance of limiting planned cesarean deliveries to cases with proven benefit for the mother and/or child.'
American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, December 2006. Reuters Health, Monday, January 8, 2007
Infant Health Worse with Planned Caesarian Section
New research in rats may solve the mystery of why babies need less oxygen during the stressful moments of birth. Scientists say the hormone oxytocin, produced by the mother, tells the fetal brain to quiet down and stop using so much energy.
In the new study, which appears in the Dec. 15 issue of the journal Science, researchers in Germany and France report that a surge in a mother rat's oxytocin levels during childbirth calmed neurotransmitters, essentially quieting the brain so it won't need as much oxygen. By reducing the ability of the rats to process oxytocin, researchers found that they could cause more problems with oxygen during birth.
The findings could potentially lead to new treatments for mothers during difficult births. At the least, they reveal the remarkable workings of the birth system, said Dr. Hugh Taylor, director of the division of reproductive endocrinology at Yale University School of Medicine. 'It's just comforting to know that when you're going into labor, your body is doing something to protect your baby, and your baby will be more likely to come out normal and intact,' said Taylor.
HealthDay, Friday, December 15, 2006
Study of Oxytocin Hormone During Birth: Quietening Baby Brain, Conserve
From the essay: 'Most pregnant women restrict their mobility and their participation in routine activities, but studies have proved that daily exercises can reduce chances of miscarriage by 40%. US researcher, James Clapp and coworkers have observed that moderate exercises such as walking or cycling can prevent pregnancy induced hypertension. Women who started exercise early in pregnancy, their placenta grew almost a third faster in midpregnancy and had about 15% more blood vessels and surface area at term. Exercise can also prevent early onset of labor, premature rupture of membrane, and can even help to shorten the duration of labor.
A study has shown that women who exercised during pregnancy felt better during the first trimester than those who did not exercise in pregnancy. Exercise acts in concert with pregnancy to increase the heart rate, stroke volume and cardiac output. It has also been observed that exercise help mothers to loose pregnancy weight faster; it decreases aches and pains associated with pregnancy; reduces likelihood of severe trauma from episiotomies and also reduces the number of caesarean sections. Lesser weight gain and fat retention; improved attitude and mental state; easier and less complicated labor and quick recovery are among the other advantages for women.
Fetal benefits include improved stress tolerance and advanced neurobehavioral maturation. The offspring of the exercising women were significantly heavier and longer. The offspring of those mothers who started exercise early in their gestation are leaner at 5 years of age and have a slightly better neurodevelopmental outcome.
Kegels manoeuvre: In this manoeuvre alternate contraction and relaxation of the muscles of pelvic outlet and birth canal is done. Strengthening of these muscles supports the contents of the abdomen preventing uterus or bladder from falling through these muscles, especially after having children. Relaxing these muscles teaches her how to let go so the baby can pass through the birth canal.
Squatting: Squatting during pregnancy helps increase the mobility of the pelvic joints and strengthens the legs. A squatting position during birth can increase the pelvic outlet by as much as 25% percent and allows for the greatest degree of pelvic adaptation as the baby descends.
Relaxation in the side lying position: Relaxation provides important benefits to a women's body and mind. Taking time each day to relieve stress can renew energy as well as enhance experience of pregnancy and the growing life within her. Relaxing on a side not only produces physical and mental benefits for mother, but also maximizes blood flow to the uterus, providing benefits for the baby.
S.A. Fazlani. 4th year Medical Student, Ziauddin Medical University, Karachi
Study on Exercise During Pregnancy: Higher Birth Weight, Feel
Good, Pelvic Floor Exercises, Squatting
This study looks at the effect of yoga on pregnancy outcomes. The sample
group included 335 women who were enrolled between 18 and 20 weeks of pregnancy;
half began yoga, the other half was the control group.
Yoga practices, including physical postures, breathing, and meditation were practiced by the yoga group one hour daily, until delivery of child. The control group walked 30 minutes twice a day (standard obstetric advice) during the study period.
The result show that women in the yoga group gave birth to babies with a significantly higher birth weight > or = 2500 grams, preterm labor was significantly lower, complications such as isolated intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) and pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH) were also significantly lower. There were no significant adverse effects noted in the yoga group.
Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana (sVYASA), Vivekananda Yoga. Research Foundation, Bangalore, India.
Page Title: 'Women's Health: Giving Birth. Evolution & Natural
Vaginal Child Birth, Home Birthing, Caesarean, Cervix Dialation, Nipples,
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Analyse any human emotion, no matter how far it may be removed from the sphere of sex, and you are sure to discover somewhere the primal impulse, to which life owes its perpetuation. ... The primitive stages can always be re-established; the primitive mind is, in the fullest meaning of the word, imperishable. ... Mans most disagreeable habits and idiosyncrasies, his deceit, his cowardice, his lack of reverence, are engendered by his incomplete adjustment to a complicated civilisation. It is the result of the conflict between our instincts and our culture. (Sigmund Freud)
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