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How easy is it to have a natural childbirth in a hospital?


Forum: Natural Childbirth

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  #1  
April 29th, 2012, 05:31 AM
Allie_SMg's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Hi ladies, my name is Allie and DH is Richard. My husband and I haven't conceived yet (we are currently on our 7th cycle TTC our first with one early loss), but we've been giving serious thought to a natural home birth, or one at a birthing center. Either way, I have a strong conviction to have a natural birth.

Now my question is, how easy is it to have a completely natural birth in a hospital? I'm active duty in the military and worry that it would be difficult (not impossible, just difficult) for us to get coverage on a midwife/doula for a home or birthing center birth with TriCare (finding a midwife in the area under tricare etc). If it came to it, I'd be willing to do it in a hospital, but I really like the idea of moving around and being allowed to do what my body feels it needs to in order to birth a healthy baby and I definitely DO NOT want drugs or a c-section forced on me while I'm in labor. My top priority is the baby's health, of course, but I just want to be in an environment encouraging to our needs/wishes. Lately, I've been a little worried. Especially after watching the documentaries "The Business of Being Born" and "Pregnant In America". It's made me want to have a natural birth even moreso, but worried about the hospital/insurance situations.

How difficult do they make it on you to have a natural birth and what do I need to do in order to find a good place to do it at, what questions should I ask etc? I know it's a bit early to be thinking about this so much, but I want to have an idea of what I need to be thinking about etc.

Thanks!
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Last edited by Allie_SMg; April 29th, 2012 at 05:33 AM.
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  #2  
April 29th, 2012, 11:18 AM
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It totally depends on the hospital. I gave birth to my first at a hospital and did it completely natural. No one even mentioned drugs/epidural to me and the staff was fine with it.

You should definitely ask around about the hospitals in your area and see what people say. You can also interview OBs and see what they have to offer. Ask them about their c-section rates, how often they work with women that have a NCB, what their thoughts on induction are, etc.
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  #3  
April 29th, 2012, 04:46 PM
therevslady's Avatar Built for Birth
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I agree that it depends on the hospital. Every hospital is so different around here. There are a couple of great ones where it's so easy to have a natural birth, and some that make it a bit difficult.

I'd go tour the hospital and ask what their routine procedures are:

How often and how long do they monitor?
Are you required to wear an IV?
Can you eat in labor?
Are you permitted out of bed through all stages of labor?
What positions are permitted for pushing?
What positions are permitted for delivering?
Do you have access to shower/tub?
How many support people are you allowed?

You might be able to contact Operation Special Delivery to get a free or discounted doula to help you navigate this process.

Home birth is a great option too.
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  #4  
May 2nd, 2012, 03:49 AM
alicenwonderland's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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It's totally possible!!! The only interventions i had during my birth, i asked for. They put a saline lock in my arm, but i was not hooked up to anything, and was able to move freely. I also had intermittent monitoring, so i labored all over the place and just would walk over to the monitor when they needed a strip on the baby. No one mentioned pain medication, augmentation or anything like that. I was able to do as i liked. I was given a birthing ball and the option of using a whirlpool tub.

My interventions took place after 3 hours of pushing, when i was asking for help. Doctor would have given me more time... but i was out of gas and begging for them to pull him out.
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  #5  
May 3rd, 2012, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alicenwonderland View Post
It's totally possible!!! The only interventions i had during my birth, i asked for. They put a saline lock in my arm, but i was not hooked up to anything, and was able to move freely. I also had intermittent monitoring, so i labored all over the place and just would walk over to the monitor when they needed a strip on the baby. No one mentioned pain medication, augmentation or anything like that. I was able to do as i liked. I was given a birthing ball and the option of using a whirlpool tub.

My interventions took place after 3 hours of pushing, when i was asking for help. Doctor would have given me more time... but i was out of gas and begging for them to pull him out.
My experience exactly! The staff read my birth plan and followed it to a T. They did exactly what I wanted. The only problem was the hospital didn't have a tub available to labor in.

I asked for interventions after 3 hours of pushing too, because I just couldn't go on any longer. But no one offered me anything at that point. I had to ask for it.

I really think it does depend on the hospital. I LOVED my hospital!
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  #6  
May 3rd, 2012, 11:11 AM
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I went to a hospital that has a reputation for not being NCB friendly (they get a lot of high risk moms compared to some of the other hospitals, so they have a high intervention rate comparatively). Even so I got a NCB without even doing a birth plan.

The nurse pretty much left me alone to do my thing coming in every once in a while to monitor or suggest something (birth ball since my baby was posterior, offer aroma therapy if I was interested). Never had to get an IV, if I declined anything that was fine and I was left alone.
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  #7  
May 3rd, 2012, 01:54 PM
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I hear all kinds of horror stories of women being forced into stuff at hospitals and being "bullied" by their docs..Ive had 3 children in hospital affiliated birthing centers and never experienced this..Even with my induction of my third child(was medically necessary as I had a condition dangerous to my baby) I was able to do what I wanted..Actually I dont think I even saw any of the hospital staff except for check in..to start the induction then when I requested to be checked because I felt like the baby was falling out..LOL..When I had my oldest about 8 hrs into labor I requested an epidural..The nurse told me she'd put in the request and theyd be there as soon as they could but let her or anyone else know if I changed my mind and it wouldnt be a problem..as far as not having tubs in the rooms..even the free standing birthing center my sister raved about didnt have tubs..I don't know if thats standard now or what but It seems like theyre being eliminated in a lot of places..
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  #8  
May 4th, 2012, 08:05 PM
minalyn's Avatar MOMMY to Evan 1/7/13
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@Allie I'm also active duty and cuttently 5 weeks pregnant. Just wanted to tell you we offer water births at the hkspital on base and it's all covered! Just ask your primary care doctor, they should be able to tell you what's offered
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  #9  
May 5th, 2012, 09:07 AM
mommyfirst11's Avatar Veteran
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I agree with the above posters, you have to search for that kind of hospital. I also had a completely natural birth in the hospital.
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  #10  
May 7th, 2012, 09:10 AM
noworries
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Definitely depends on the hospital. I've had 2 wonderful, natural births in the hospital but we have very NCB friendly hospitals here. It also depends on your provider. So, if you do go the hospital route, make sure your doctor is NCB friendly and willing to do what you want. Hiring a doula would also be a good idea.
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  #11  
May 15th, 2012, 03:31 PM
CrunchyChristian
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I agree that it depends on the hospital. My 2 medicated, tons of medical intervention births were at hospitals where there was zero support from the staff. With one of them I had asked when was the latest I could get pain meds for labor and the nurse said she already had put in a request for me (and I didn't want any!). The one hospital I had my two natural births were awesome and the staff was awesome. I'm having my 5th child there again and can't wait.
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  #12  
May 15th, 2012, 08:36 PM
lunarmagic's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Ditto the others!

My first birth was a stillbirth so my whole birth plan was thrown out the window. I did ask for an epidural that time because I didn't care, but by the time they finally got there I was in transition so I never got it. I was panicking and freaking out in transition and the nurse knew exactly what was happening and held my attention and got me calmed down and ready to push. She was fantastic.

My second birth was fully natural but I ended up laboring at home too long and barely made it to the hospital, so there was no time for interventions or check in or any of that. She was born downstairs in triage and they put her on my chest, wrapped us up in blankets, and didn't even bother delivering the placenta or cutting the cord, just let us be while they wheeled me upstairs and got me into a room. The hospital policy is not to remove the infant from the room at all (except for the newborn hearing test), she was weighed and washed and returned to my arms. They highly encourage rooming-in and said most of the nurseries are now storage and they often have no babies in the one used nursery. They have LCs on staff to support breastfeeding. All in all their policies are really great and make it much easier to feel comfortable birthing there. They also do have one labor tub - they don't allow birthing in the tub, just laboring, but they said it's not used very often. I am going to request that room, just in case I need it.

I'm due to give birth any day now and it will be at the same hospital. This time I'm hoping for a more "normal" birth experience in a L&D room. I didn't even bother writing a birth plan this time because I really don't have any concerns. They have it in my chart that I don't want an IV and they have no issue with that. And I will remind them, haha.
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  #13  
May 26th, 2012, 12:35 PM
daneeleigh's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I had mine in a birth center because my hospital was not natural birth friendly. I agree that doing your research ahead of time will help.
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  #14  
May 30th, 2012, 11:25 AM
Carwen*Angel's Avatar Fly away on my zephyr
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My hospital claims to be NCB friendly and has all manner of modern equipment such as squat bars, birthing balls and quite a few pool rooms. However, I birthed there with Daniel and they seemed hell bent on having me attached to a bed on various IVs. I am making a very specific birth plan and briefing DP on what I want. Determined not to be as drugged as I was last time at least, and hoping at best to have no drugs whatsoever and a completely natural birth.
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  #15  
June 6th, 2012, 12:00 AM
Erin.minus.thyroid's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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i had a great natural hospital water birth. I think you need to find a great hospital and a great midwife/doctor that work well together. Where I went the midwife team did many natural births only that one specific hospital and the nurses there worked well with them. The midwife stayed the entire time (i actually had 2 because one was a student midwife) and a nurse the entire time. They knew exactly what i wanted and never even suggested anything that wasnt necessary (besides natural techniques like the shower, birth ball, pool, etc).

The only thing that they did that i would have preferred they not do, was the baseline monitoring when i first arrived. They hook you up to the heartrate and contraction monitors for like 20mins and expect you to lay on the bed for it. I could not lay so i had to sit but i didnt even want to do that.
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  #16  
June 7th, 2012, 05:05 PM
ChicaChels's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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two great hospital natural births - first one was an induction at 37w for HELLP disease. The only time drugs were mentioned were if i asked for them, once i flipped ##it on a nurse for telling me i couldnt do it (my midwife got me a new nurse shortly after)

second one i there when i was already pushing...which kind of sucked because i really wanted a water birth and they didnt get the tub filled fast enough.

having a provider who is TRULY supportive is most important, and having a husband/doula/someone who will truly advocate for you is equally important
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