A woman is often seen giving birth on her back, with her feet in stirrups. But this is not the only position that exists and, above all, it is perhaps not the most favorable!
Delivering on your back
This is the best known position, among other things because it allows easy and quick access to the perineum. This is why midwives and doctors have chosen it as the default position. If your child's heart rate is to be tracked, this is likely how you will be asked to position yourself.
But this position is not necessarily the most natural or the one with the most advantages. Indeed, when you are placed like this on your back, all the weight of the uterus rests on the lumbar and the coccyx, which can give more intense back pain. In addition, this position tends to crush the vena cava, which carries blood to the heart: you are therefore less well oxygenated. The sacrum also lacks mobility, placed in this way, and can hinder your baby's progress.
In short, if you choose this position for pushing, remember that it is strongly advised to change positions several times throughout labour.
Give birthon the side
You can deliver on your side even if your baby's heart rate is being monitored. Lying on your left side, you manage to free your vena cava, so you will be better oxygenated than lying on your back, and baby too.
It is also possible to lie on the opposite side of the baby's back: this way, the baby's head no longer presses on your coccyx, which reduces lower back pain during contractions. In addition, your spouse can take the opportunity to give you a few back massages… Perfect for births without an epidural!
A recent study conducted by a team of Australian researchers has finally proven what we already suspected: standing during work saves time! Thanks to gravity, the bag of waters presses on the cervix, which allows to accelerate its dilation by at least an hour! In addition, this position allows you to better manage the pain of childbirth. Indeed, the fact of moving and walking allows you to relax and promotes the production of endorphins.
On the other hand, there is a greater risk that the umbilical cord will pass in front of the baby's head.
Almost all delivery rooms are now equipped with a large balloon, and several women have been able to take advantage of it. We sit on it, and we make small movements of the pelvis. It allows your lover to massage your lower back, while relaxing the perineal area. Moreover, thesecircular movements can help baby descend. In addition, spreading your legs apart helps the pelvis open.
On the downside, the ball is not for everyone: indeed, for women who lack balance and mobility, it could be dangerous to fall backwards!
This is the “super position”, which combines the advantages of standing birth and sitting birth. The fact of being placed vertically is here supported by the opening of the legs. In addition, this squatting position allows you to have a greater expulsive force, during the push!
Thus, the squatting position reduces the working time, but also that of the push. That being said, this position puts a lot of strain on the perineum: in short, it is especially reserved for those who have done their exercises. In addition, it is a position that requires more intense physical effort and you must have well-muscled thighs and a certain flexibility to maintain it for a long time. Some birth centers and some hospitals have birth benches, which will prevent the future mother from having a bad fall.
More and more establishments offer the possibility of giving birth in another position, and talking about it with your doctor or your midwife could be appropriate, before childbirth.