So in the last blog I spoke about the power of having a positive mindset during pregnancy, and what kind of impact that can have on your labour and birth. Today, let’s discuss physical ways that you can use your body to help you achieve an intervention-free birth.
There are 2 main things that you can do to have a birth that is as active, short and intervention-free as possible.
1. Keep upright
So if you think that during birth you should be lying on your back with your legs up in the air and screaming to the heavens, then I’m delighted to tell you that’s the worst thing you could do…and I’m sure most of you have heard that before. Why keep upright?
- Gravity is an enormously powerful tool in labour. It allows the baby to push in a downward direction
- This downward pressure applied to the pelvic floor muscles, the cervix and the pelvic ligaments all send more messages to the brain saying ‘hey release more oxytocin please’, which dilates you faster and more effectively
- Your pelvis is in the optimum and most open position, ensuring baby has the maximum amount of space to get down into the birth canal
What does ‘upright’ mean exactly? Upright doesn’t have to mean just standing. You can stand but lean forward to your birthing partner, onto the end or edge of the bed too. You can kneel and lean into a ball, sit on your ball or be in a hands and knees position. I always suggest to my pregnant mamas that they practice loads of different positions so that when the time comes, they can easily fall into whatever positions feel good.
MOVE! Why do you want to keep moving during contractions?
You want to keep movement going in the hips during your waves of contractions, as you remain as upright as possible because:
- It helps ensure a good & consistent blood flow to your uterus, therefore helping to make your contractions much more manageable
- Moving helps to keep a good blood flow to baby, keeping them health, calm & relaxed during the process
- Moving around helps to keep your pelvis open, therefore allowing baby’s head descend effectively.
- The happier baby is, the more smoothly you progress, then the happier your midwives and doctors will be, therefore making any form of intervention unnecessary.
All of these tools should help you to manage your labour making the whole process go more smoothly and help you achieve a birth as intervention-free as possible.