Why Natural Birth?
Updated: Aug 8
For the majority of women, given their health status and that of baby, natural labor and birth should be the first route they consider. It is only in recent history that allopathic western medicine and medicated or surgical births have been normalized as a viable option for women. There is no shame if that is how your labor and birth ends up but the best and healthiest option is natural. Why? our bodies are really meant to experience each and every step through labor and birth. Each physiological stage builds upon the last, helping mother and baby to reach necessary evolutionary milestones. Take for instance the journey of the baby through the birth canal. The slow movement through the pelvis helps the newborn's lungs to compress amniotic fluid from them as well as increase negative pressure within the alveoli. This process leads to their ability to transition from their intrauterine system of oxygen exchange through the umbilical cord to the extrauterine pulmonary exchange once the umbilical cord is cut. The majority of newborns born by Cesarean Section transition adequately but medicine would concur that vaginal birth is not an equal physiological process. No one would argue that it would be better to avoid heart disease through exercise and eating healthfully instead of resorting to medication to obtain a level of optimal health and yet pregnancy, labor and birth are seen through the same lens of medicine. This sets up the system of birthing to not be treated as as a natural and normal physiological process. The Midwifery model of care is a system that sees this as a normal event in a woman's life cycle and approaches pregnancy and birthing from a perspective of watchful waiting and non-intervention first. The two models are not mutually exclusive however and the midwifery model of care honors the appropriate use of technology and intervention. As a midwife we also collaborate with the medical model to uphold the optimal health and wellbeing of mother, baby and family. We utilize the medical model when appropriate, always beginning with birth as a natural event.