Many women prefer natural childbirth to labor and delivery in a hospital bed with pain medication. Immersion in water is a centuries-old practice to reduce the pain of labor and help the mother relax. The buoyancy of the water helps the mother move more easily into different positions, which allows the baby shift into the best alignment within the pelvis. This combination of relaxation, maternal mobility, and correct fetal alignment leads to faster labors in water, with less bruising and tearing for the mother.
The positive effects of water birthing are well established, but for certain pregnancies, it can carry higher risks. If you’re delivering twins or pre-term, your caregiver may recommend against water birth. Similarly, if your baby is breech (feet-down instead of head-down in the womb) or if you have any infections or complications, a water birth will not occur.
If you do plan to have a water birth you must first take a special class to prepare for what to expect. Click here to register for a free class and get ready for a wonderful, natural experience. Or, check out the other free classes offered by Cone Health.