There are several options when giving birth, including using a mid-wife at home, going to a birthing center or delivering in a hospital. Some women may be afraid of a hospital birth, thinking unnecessary intervention are used. Keep in mind, hospitals are a business. A woman who is unhappy with her birth experiences is bad for business. When considering a hospital birth, it’s best to educate yourself. Someone will always have a horror story about a birth experience. However, their experience may be the exception, not the rule. Talk with your doctor. Tour the hospital while you are deciding. Ask about specific polices you are concerned about. Below are 8 common misconceptions about having a hospital birth.
Your baby will go the warmer right after birth.
You will likely be asked if you want the baby on your chest immediately after delivery or want the baby cleaned up at the warmer. In most cases, the baby can go right to mom. In a small percentage of cases, a baby needs a little extra help transitioning and may need oxygen or other interventions. This will require the baby to go to the warmer.
Pain medication will be pushed.
Hospitals offer pain medication to make your delivery more comfortable. Some women may do fine without pain medications. Other women lose focus when the pain becomes intense, and it interferes with their birth experience. No one will force you to use pain medication.
You lose all control.
Most hospitals will ask you to write a birth plan. In the plan, you will be able to state your wishes for during labor, birth and after the baby is born. Hospitals do their best to honor a woman’s requests. You have a voice and can use it if you feel something is not right for you and your baby.
Unnecessary interventions, such as a forceps delivery will be used.
Doctors want deliveries to be uncomplicated. C-sections, forceps and vacuum deliveries, create a higher chance of liability, complications and stress for all involved. A doctor will not suggest one of these types of delivers without a good reason.
You will have to stay in bed.
If you choose an epidural, you will need to stay in bed since it’s difficult to feel your legs and walking is unsafe. Some hospitals have a birthing ball or your can bring in your own. If you decide against the epidural, you can walk around as much as you want.
There are restrictions on who can be in the room while you delivery.
Check polices ahead of times, but many hospitals let siblings be present for the birth. A birthing partner is almost always allowed. Even during a c-section a partner can be in the operating room.
You will be required to stay for a certain amount of time.
While you will be advised to stay for at least twenty-four hours after a vaginal delivery and 72 hours after a c-section, you will not be forced. Hospitals encourage this length of stay to watch for complications. But a hospital is not a prison. You can always sign yourself out.
You will have to give birth laying in bed on your back.
This is almost never a hospital policy. Ask the hospital ahead of time if other birthing positions are OK. The physician wants you to have a quick, easy and uncomplicated delivery. That is the goal with every patient. If alternative birthing positions facilitate that, most doctors will give the OK.