Pregnancy, Parenthood & Playtime

Doula, Birth Advocate, Aspiring Midwife, Mother, and Wife

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Avoiding Common Hospital Interventions


Today, childbirth has become more of a medical procedure than a natural function of our bodies. Many women who do have a desire for a natural birth are often looking for resources and information on how to achieve that experience. A great resource I have come across several times in my journey to becoming a childbirth educator in recent months is a website called Mother’s Advocate. They offer a wonderful plethora of videos aimed to help in the teaching process.

The video I am going to use today is Avoiding Unnecessary Interventions, while writing a little of my own thoughts.

Realistically, if you truly want to avoid the common hospital interventions, the best place for you to give birth is either at home, or a child birth center. In my experience personally, it can be an uncomfortable or stressful fight with hospital staff to avoid simple things like an IV line. But it all goes back to birthing where you feel comfortable.

What are some of the common medical interventions during birth?

  • An IV for Fluids
  • Epidural Anesthesia
  • Electronic Fetal Monitoring
  • Pitocin
  • Breaking the bag of water
  • Episiotomy

Most of which are unnecessary in many of the cases we see them in today, an IV for example. The purpose of an IV could be cut by simply allowing a woman to eat and drink during labor. Recent studies show that there is no need to starve a woman while she is in labor.

Constant electronic fetal monitoring is also overkill in low risk women, in recent years The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has shown that in the 40 years electronic fetal monitoring has been the norm, there has been no improved outcomes in mothers or babies. Of course like anything, there are some situations when necessary, but mostly in high risk cases.

Epidurals for those who choose to use them for labor can be the right fit, but they are not risk free. Epidurals can slow labor, or pose other risks to mothers and babies. There are various ways to help relieve the pain of labor.

Pitocin can cause contractions, but it can also cause contractions that are too strong resulting in fetal distress, or the cascade of interventions.

Episiotomy has been shown in recent years to be medically unnecessary in the majority of cases it is taking place in.

Skipping these common Interventions :

There are several ways you can go about skipping the routine hospital interventions listed above. Some of the ways you can do that are :

  • Hire a birth doula
  • Write a birth plan, or your wishes for birth
  • Talk to your provider about your expectations of case, or practices and procedures you are not comfortable with.
  • Take a tour of the hospital you will be giving birth at.
  • Research their statistics for intervention before giving birth there.

All of these can help to lower your changes of these common medical interventions having an impact on your desire for a natural birth.

Danielle Elwood

10 Responses

  1. elwood says:

    Being wrapped in the cord does not equate to an emergency though.
    It is the mismanagement of the cord which causes the issues.
    Babies with nuchal cords are born at home with no problem.
    Read about it, I can provide you enough information, studies, and pieces written by MD’s that say the same thing.

  2. Beacons says:

    All I am saying is that cord accidents happen. Have you not watched Birth Day, DeliverMe, and all those other medicals shows (that you say are not real)? They are always showing babies wrapped in the cord.

  3. elwood says:

    I read exactly what you said. Did you read the link that was posted?
    Would you like more written by more medical professionals?

  4. Beacons says:

    What are you talking about?? Did you not read my post.

  5. elwood says:

    Is that like the baby born at 17 weeks that survived?
    The cord around the neck is rarely an emergency :

  6. Beacons says:

    The birth I attended 2 months ago the baby was tangled in the cord. My sister-in-laws baby died from a cord accident as they put it. That baby was alive just minutes before birth. if the cord is around the babies neck the baby can die.

  7. elwood says:

    You got your MD where?
    Babies rarely get “tangled up” in the cord, and even then that has very little to do with electronic fetal monitoring.
    A cord around the neck which is the most common “cord issue” is not dangerous either.
    The most dangerous cord issue is cord prolapse which is also not too common.

  8. Beacons says:

    UM??? Babies can and do get tangled up in the cord. That can cause death. Lots of things can go wrong during birth.

  9. elwood says:

    Um, babies to not breathe until they are born.
    If you have an issue with it, take it up with ACOG who made the statement.

  10. Beacons says:

    there has been no improved outcomes in mothers or babies.

    What??? If a baby isn’t being monitored how will they know if the baby is having breathing problems.