"Home... birth?!? I could never do THAT!!"
Have you ever heard that? Closer to home... have you ever SAID that? I did, once upon a time. Then I had children, both in the hospital and out. Then I became a doula, and saw the some of the differences in births in the hospital vs. out of hospital And then I spent years of time and energy to become a midwife. So now I'm a certified professional midwife. And I attend births at home!
Don't worry, I'm not out to change everyone's mind about home birth. It's not for everyone. There are many instances where there are medical needs that can be met best, and most safely, in the hospital. However, for the most part, this is not the case for American women! I think if women and their loved ones looked over some of the information about homebirth, it might become better understood, and chosen more often.
Is homebirth for me?
Birth is a very life changing event. In Arizona, women have choices about how and where they choose to give birth. When looking at the options, consider these aspects-
*Safety: Look at the newest research of planned births at home for over 17,000 women. http://www.cfmidwifery.org/pdf/MANAHBData04-09FactSheet.pdf
Risk is constantly evaluated to ensure only healthy, low-risk women birth at home. This is addressed by discussing things like nutrition, exercise, and stress management at each prenatal appointment, as well as offering options such as ultrasounds and blood work in the prenatal period. Prenatal appointments happen in the comfort of your own home!
With SYB, YOU are in control! The midwife is simply her to educate and empower you to make choices you feel are right for your situation. True informed consent only happens when there is the also the choice of informed refusal. In labor, Supporting Your Birth, LLC (“SYB”) has an plan to be carried out in the event of urgent and non-urgent emergencies. This includes information of the closest fire department/EMS location and closest hospital to transfer to. SYB also keeps current in CPR for both adults and newborns, and carries oxygen, anti-hemorrhagic medications, and monitoring equipment to every birth. It’s important to note that because interventions are rarely used in labor while at home, there are little to no iatrogenic (doctor caused) risks. Generally, with fewer interventions, there are fewer complication.
*Informed consent and refusal: People that choose homebirth often desire to have more information and decision making power in the journey. When working with SYB, all decisions are made mutually with your midwife, after giving you information about the risk and benefits, and answering any questions you may have. Since at SYB, you are considered an equal to your midwife (and respected as the expert on your own body!), there is not the intimidation many can feel when talking with doctors. This is especially important in labor, when you don’t want to have to advocate for your right for information and/or the ability to refuse a procedure.
*Preferable! High on the list of reason people would rather choose homebirth are...
- one-to-one care
- increased family involvement
- extensive appointments
- close communication with your midwife
- books and video to help you prepare
- ability to choose as many- or as few- people at your birth as you want
- comfort of your own food, clothes, bed!
- option of birthing in water
- relaxation & support in the postpartum period
- lower risk of illness (vs bacteria in hospitals)
- network of like-minded professionals
- often less expensive than hospital births
Most of all, Supporting Your Birth has a deep desire to help you have a safe, satisfying birth experience. Birth happens easiest and with fewer complications when you are cared for body, mind and soul; when you can celebrate this time in your life as a normal, exciting event to look forward to; when you feel secure and safe. Although homebirth may not be for everyone, it is a great option for those seeking professional, respectful, and loving care in the privacy of their own home. Contact me to get more information about your birthing options!