Women are amazing. We literally grow and nourish people!
Our body, designed for this task, knows exactly what to do – from conception to birth, and even through much of parenting.
While a woman can give birth with little to no assistance, she doesn’t need to.
There are many people to support her to have a positive birth experience and make the transition to motherhood a smooth one.
People Every Birthing Mother Should Consider
Pregnant women often focus on practical things such as setting up the nursery and packing the hospital bag. Another important pre-baby to-do is ensuring you have great support in place.
Here are 5 people every birthing mother should consider:
#1: An Excellent Maternity Care Provider
One of the most important decisions you’ll make during pregnancy is choosing your midwife or obstetrician.
While many things come into play in determining the outcome of your birth, your maternity care provider has a huge role in how your birth unfolds. From building your confidence, or breaking it, to facilitating birth versus trying to manage it.
Take time to learn about your options and choose a maternity care provider that allows for open communication, encourages you to be an active participant in your care, and one that trusts birth.
You can learn more about choosing a maternity care provider in our BellyBelly articles Who Cares In The US? Choosing A Maternity Care Provider and Who Cares? Maternity Care Options For Australian Women.
#2: Helpful Labour Partner/Support
A supportive father, partner or other support person can be a huge part of a positive birthing experience. Feeling cared for and supported can be vital during labour, especially transition!
Your partner may not be a health professional, but they likely know you well and how best to support you during challenging times. They know how to make you feel supported and loved, and that’s something that can’t be replaced by a professional.
You can read more about labor support in BellyBelly’s articles Dads-To-Be: A Guide to Labour & How To Support Her and Birth Support – 10 Best Tips For An Untrained Support Person.
#3: An Experienced Pregnancy Chiropractor
Chiropractic care during pregnancy isn’t something everyone chooses. However, many women that do to see a chiropractor during pregnancy find it to be very helpful.
A chiropractic adjustment can help with handling common pregnancy ailments, such as backache and headaches, as well as help prepare the body for birth.
During pregnancy, our body releases the hormone relaxin which helps to make our pelvic joints a bit more flexible. Unfortunately, this hormone affects all of our joints making us feel a bit less stable and more prone to misalignment.
Another thing chiropractic care can help facilitate is optimal fetal positioning. You can read more about positioning in our BellyBelly article Optimal Fetal Positioning – How To Make Birth Easier.
#4: An Independent Childbirth Educator
Birth is absolutely instinctual. If so, why would you need a birth educator?
Well, our culture certainly doesn’t encourage us to follow our instincts. In fact, much of modern birth culture encourages the exact opposite. While instincts during birth are incredible, they can also be interrupted in many ways.
When we don’t learn about birth, when we aren’t encouraged to follow our instincts, the fear of birth can actually prolong birth and make it a rather unpleasant experience.
Choosing a childbirth education class taught by an independent instructor can be an excellent part of preparing for a positive birth experience. She can help you learn about normal physiological birth, how to follow your instincts, comfort measures and informed decisions making.
You can read more about independent childbirth education in our BellyBelly article 9 Ways Independent Birth Classes Can Help You Get Better Results.
#5: A Doula – Professional Labor And Postpartum Support Provider
If you have a great maternity care provider, a supportive partner and you’ve taken time to become well prepared for birth, can you really benefit from professional support?
Many experienced mothers who’ve used doulas will tell you, yes!
A birth doula is trained to help support you and your partner during labor and birth. Think of them as almost a professional guide, like a Sherpa while you travel an unfamiliar trail. They’ve been down the trail many times and can help guide you and your partner during the experience.
You can read more about doulas in BellyBelly article What Is A Doula? Why Pregnant Women Love Doulas!
Many birth doulas also offer postnatal doula services, and for those that don’t, they often have a referral ready to a postnatal doula able to support you once you head home with your new little one(s).
The postnatal period is a time of transition. It’s important to have lots of support so you can rest, heal and become confident in your mothering. Having professional in-home support while you adjust can be vital to closing out your pregnancy journey on a positive note.
Read more about postnatal doulas in BellyBelly article Postnatal Doulas – 8 Reasons Why You Should Hire One.