As more and more women are choosing to have babies at home, the home birth movement is only growing in popularity. So what’s behind this recent surge of interest? For starters, there are a number of reasons home births are becoming so popular. These reasons include the safety of birthing at home, the convenience of having it in a controlled environment, and the fact that you can be in charge of every aspect of your birth experience. In addition, many people believe that they are better for mothers and babies because they provide greater flexibility and control than traditional births.
1. They are safer
There have been a number of studies that compare the safety of home births versus hospital ones. The study by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that home labors were as safe or safer than hospital births in most cases. This is despite the fact that home deliveries usually involve less medical intervention and often use midwives or doulas instead of doctors. Glory Birth offers their services to future mothers that want to hire an experienced midwife.
Hospitals often involve more interventions and procedures than home deliveries do. For example, most hospitals require women to undergo an Intrauterine Pressure Support Device (IUD) insertion during labor or delivery, even if they don’t think they’ll need it. These devices can increase the risk of pelvic floor injuries, and many women find them intrusive and uncomfortable. In contrast, home births typically involve minimal interventions and allow for a more natural childbirth experience.
2. More control
One of the primary reasons that home births are becoming so popular is that many women feel more in control during their labor than when they deliver in a hospital setting. There are numerous benefits to delivering at home, including greater flexibility and control over the experience, which can contribute to a smoother delivery. Furthermore, hospitals have been known to put unnecessary pressures on pregnant women and their families, which can often lead to negative experiences.
3. Increased privacy
Many mothers prefer delivering their babies at home because it allows them greater privacy. This is particularly important for those who may be apprehensive about displaying their baby publicly or who have concerns about being intruded upon during labor. In some cases, hospitals may require mothers to give birth in an open room with other patients nearby, which can be quite uncomfortable and unsettling.
4. Lower cost
One of the biggest advantages of having a home delivery is that it typically costs less than delivering in a hospital setting. This is due in part to the fact that most birthing centers charge an Initial Fee plus additional amounts for each stage of labor and delivery (i.e., c-section rates tend to be higher in hospitals than at home). Additionally, many midwives currently offer discounted rates to mothers who deliver at home.
5. Are More Inclusive
When you give birth in a hospital, it’s often difficult for you and your partner to have an active role in the labor and delivery process. You may be separated from your partner, and there may be restricted access to natural light or sound stimulation. In contrast, a home birth allows you to remain close to your partner throughout labor and delivery. This can make the experience more intimate and bonding.
6. High chance of having a vaginal birth
This is because home deliveries are considered less invasive than hospital births, and they often result in shorter labor times and fewer complications. When a woman is in a familiar setting, surrounded by the people she trusts, it is much more likely she will feel safe and even comfortable during contractions. This can result in less stress meaning the future mother will be more relaxed and therefore, will have easier labor with no complications.
7. Opportunity for unlimited skin-to-skin time with baby
This type of care is critical for establishing a healthy relationship between you and your child and can provide them with important emotional and physical benefits. When giving birth at home, the mom can hold her baby on her chest as long as she wants, and even the partner can participate.
How to prepare?
1. Discuss the options and risks with your doctor or midwife. Your doctor or midwife can give you an overview of the health benefits and risks of home birth, as well as provide information about recommended techniques for labor and delivery.
2. Make sure your birthing area is ready. The space should be comfortable and free from distractions, including televisions and electronic devices. You may also want to have a few birth supplies on hand, such as a hospital bed, towel warmer, bathtub stopper, birthing ball, cord cutters, disposable underwear, and towels.
3. Get plenty of rest. Considering that homebirths typically take shorter than normal labor times (and often involve fewer interventions), you’ll need plenty of rest to help your body heal after delivery. In fact, most pregnant women find they get more sleep during their third trimester than they did during their first two trimesters!
4. Practice relaxation techniques before labor begins. Some basic relaxation techniques can help ease anxiety in preparation for labor: practice deep breathing exercises; focus on your abdominal area; count backward from 10; listen to calming music, or try yoga or another form of stretching/meditation. If these strategies don’t work for you, speak with your midwife about other options for relieving stress during labor.
5. Make sure you’re eating a healthy diet. Eating a healthy, nutritious diet can help support your health during and after pregnancy. Include plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat proteins in your diet. Avoid sugary foods, caffeine, alcohol, and cigarettes.
6. Get enough exercise. Exercise has been shown to help improve labor progress and reduce the risk of postpartum complications such as postpartum depression and c-section rates. Consider walking, swimming, stretching exercises, or doing gentle yoga during your active labor phase.
7. Allow yourself time to process the experience. Expecting a homebirth is an exciting prospect – but it can also be emotional and challenging. Allow yourself time to process the experience once labor begins – and don’t hesitate to reach out for support if you need it!
As more and more women are pushed to have babies outside of the traditional hospital setting, home births are quickly becoming one of the most popular choices. There are many reasons why a woman might choose to give birth at home, including safety concerns or simply preferring a less-medicalized experience. Whatever your reason for choosing this method, be sure to talk it over with your doctor before making the decision. And if you do decide to give birth at home, be prepared for plenty of preparation and effort on your part — but it could be worth it in the end!