Steps for Ensuring You Have a Safe Delivery
Every expecting parent wants the same thing: a safe delivery and a healthy baby. Unfortunately, this is not always the case—but the good news is, complications and birth injuries are relatively very rare. Even better news? There are numerous steps you can take to help ensure you have a safe delivery and that your unborn child enters the world as healthy and happy as possible.
Leading up to the birth of your child, you may be feeling a range of emotions, from excitement to anxiety to immense anticipation. Here, we have provided a list of helpful tips to help ease your nerves and improve the chances that your delivery will go as smoothly and successfully as possible.
A safe and successful delivery begins while your baby is still developing in the womb. There are many things you can do during pregnancy to protect the health of your unborn child, as well as your own physical and mental well-being. But did you know that these steps can also improve the likelihood that your delivery will go smoothly? Start by taking these measures during pregnancy to prepare your body and your mind for the arrival of your child.
Find the Right Caregiver
One of the best things you can do for your overall well-being during pregnancy is to find the right obstetrician, doctor, or midwife. You want someone you can trust and connect with throughout the entire process. Having a trusted medical professional by your side can not only make your pregnancy a more positive experience, but it can also help ensure that you feel fully prepared for labor and delivery.
Maintain Your Health
Always follow your obstetrician’s orders when it comes to your health—and the health of your child—during pregnancy. Most doctors will recommend that you focus on eating right and getting light to moderate exercise to optimize weight gain. In general, you should try to eat plenty of healthy foods, like vegetables and proteins, while avoiding less-healthy ones, like added sugars and processed foods.
It’s also important to stay active. Light to moderate exercise during pregnancy has been shown to improve sleep, reduce insomnia, balance weight, increase stamina, and, perhaps most importantly, boost morale. Less-strenuous activities, like walking, swimming, and yoga, can not only improve your health and well-being but can also encourage breathing techniques that may help prepare you for labor.
Consider Taking Pre-Natal Classes
Taking pre-natal classes is widely considered to be one of the most basic things you can do to educate yourself and prepare for the birth of your child—and for good reason! Knowing what to expect can make all the difference in your labor and delivery experience. It can also provide you with an opportunity to meet and connect with other people who are at the same stage of pregnancy as you, offering a network of support.
Create a Plan—But Stay Flexible
One of the best things you can do to prepare for delivery is creating a birthing plan. Knowing what you would like to have happen—for example, do you want your family in the room with you? Do you want to try going without an epidural? Do you want your partner to cut the umbilical cord?—can help you feel mentally prepared for the big day.
While it is important to prepare, it is also important to remember that things may not go according to plan. By staying flexible and open—for example, being willing to take medications if necessary or preparing for the possibility that your family may not be able to attend the birth—can help you effectively meet any unexpected issues or changes to your original plan.
In addition to preparing for the birth of your child throughout your pregnancy, there are several things you can do during labor to help the process go more smoothly. Regardless of whether you are giving birth in the hospital or doing a home delivery, these measures can ease the process and help make the experience better overall.
It’s common to think that you have to or should lie down for the duration of your labor, but this is not necessarily true. In fact, getting up and moving around can help speed up the process and relieve some of the discomfort associated with labor. Medical professionals agree that walking around, taking a warm shower, receiving a massage, or sitting on a birth ball can all be extremely helpful during labor.
Try Different Positions
Similar to getting up and moving around, you do not have to just lie on your back during labor. In fact, this can sometimes be a more uncomfortable and less effective way of giving birth. If appropriate, you may want to try different birthing positions, such as lying on your side, squatting, leaning forward, getting on your hands and knees, or even being seated.
Communicate with Your Doctors
Make sure you communicate with your doctor, midwife, or other providers during labor and delivery. If you wish to change birthing positions, want to walk around, or are experiencing any concerning issues, make sure you clearly communicate these things to your team. The more communication, the better the chances of a smooth labor and delivery.
Having the right people by your side during labor and delivery can make a huge difference in the process. Some people may wish to have their entire families with them; others just want a partner—or even just doctors—nearby during birth. Do whatever feels right to you. Having great support can reduce your anxiety and the stress associated with labor, making the experience much more positive overall.
You may also wish to consider hiring a doula. A doula is an experienced individual who serves as a birth partner, offering both practical and emotional support during pregnancy, labor, delivery, and in the days and weeks following the birth of your child. This may be a great help to you and could provide the support you need.
Listen to Your Body
One of the most important pieces of advice an expecting mother can receive is to get to know and really listen to her body. When it comes to breathing, moving around, changing positions, and communicating your needs, nothing beats knowing your body and what works for you. Do not be afraid to be loud, release tension, and seek the right support from the people you care about most. Advocate for yourself and your child by being in tune with yourself and your body.
What to Do If Delivery Does Not Go as Planned
Unfortunately, all the preparation in the world cannot always prevent mistakes from happening. If you experienced a difficult pregnancy, labor, or delivery, and your child suffered an injury or was later diagnosed with a medical condition, you could have grounds for a medical malpractice case.
At Faraci Lange, LLP, our Rochester birth injury lawyers understand how devastating it is to realize that you or your child suffered improper or substandard treatment at the hands of trusted medical providers. We are here to fight for you and your family, seeking the justice and fair compensation you are owed. Our team understands the complex nuances inherent in these types of cases, and we know what it takes to hold negligent health care professionals accountable.
Contact us today to request a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with one of our experienced and compassionate birth injury lawyers.