If you or your loved one is planning to have a baby, it might be tempting to have a C-Section. On the surface, the idea sounds good. Why go through agonizing hours of waiting to meet your bundle of joy when a much quicker procedure can get the job done? Because the truth is, natural childbirth is much healthier AND safer than a C-Section.
Don’t get me wrong, a C-Section has its place. In certain instances, it’s an absolute medical necessity to save lives. For instance, when the umbilical cord slips through mother’s cervix before the baby arrives, endangering the baby’s oxygen supply, or when the placenta grows into the uterine wall in a way that can block the baby’s exit through the mother’s cervix. There are also cases when the baby is in a sideways position or when the mother has a genital herpes flare-up, among others. But, these complications are only in 10-15% of childbirths.
It is quite alarming to me to see that childbirth in the U.S. has shifted from its natural process to a medical condition that needs to be treated, relying heavily on drugs and surgical interventions. Currently, a whopping 33% of babies are delivered via Cesarean Section, the highest rate among all developed nations. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists admits this is a worryingly high rate. And, the World Health Organization (WHO) says that no nation can defend having C-Sections in more than 10%-15% of childbirths, which is the rate for medical necessity.
What happens in the U.S. is that a big part of this high rate of C-Sections has nothing to do with medical necessity; it has to do with convenience for doctors (not knowing how many hours they will be stuck in the hospital with a natural birth as opposed to knowing exactly how long a C-Section will take) and fears of liability if the doctor gives nature a chance to run its course. Women also request a C-Section so their doctors feel even more compelled to welcome a baby through this procedure.
Did you know that you are actually subjecting yourself to higher risks of complications if you opt for a C-Section? Complications like increased blood loss, longer recovery time, infection of organs like the bladder, uterus, kidneys, as well as risk of complications in future pregnancies. There is even a higher risk of mortality for both mother and her baby.
My lovely ladies, I am a mother too, and I’m here to tell you how much healthier it is for you and your baby to let the baby come out naturally through a vaginal birth. I know you’re thinking it’s so much easier for the baby to be pulled out of your womb through your belly, but let me tell you, your baby is much better off both now and for future health if he comes out when he’s ready.
A vaginal birth has so many benefits for the baby. As the baby goes through the birth canal, he is exposed to many things that will make him stronger. Those strong muscular contractions of the uterus squeeze out fluid from baby’s lungs and give baby’s muscles great training. Your baby is already preparing for the world before he even takes his first breath. Natural vaginal birth also exposes the baby to the hormones mommy is producing during childbirth, preparing the baby for the stresses in real life. Baby hasn’t even seen the natural light yet, but he’s already being taught that stressful events will happen and these are the hormonal surges he will experience when struggle arrives.
Natural childbirth gives baby’s cardiovascular system stimulation too, boosting baby’s blood circulation in his whole body, which prepares him better to enter this world. There’s clear evidence now that this cardio-vascular stimulation has long-term benefits for the baby, and cranial osteopathic specialists have even reported they can tell the difference between people born naturally and via C-Section.
Babies born vaginally also receive a myriad of healthy bacteria from mommy’s vagina – these healthy bugs cover the baby all over, including in his nasal cavity, mouth and ears. This is more beneficial than you can ever imagine, because these bacteria then colonize baby’s intestines and set a solid foundation for a healthy immune system from the get-go and into adulthood. (I’ve taught you before that 75%-80% of your immunity depends on your gut.) A C-Section baby never gets this crucial exposure.
Mommy’s hormonal surges don’t just secrete stress hormones, they also include natural feel-good hormones, like oxytocin, so the baby is born happier and more ready to adjust to his totally new environment. Additionally, he is more interested in bonding with mommy via skin to skin process, making you even closer to your baby.
And, perhaps most important, babies born naturally are born when THEY are ready to be born, not when a surgeon obstetrician wants to perform a surgery to accommodate his or a parental schedule.
With all the hormonal, muscular-contractile, respiratory and bacterial advantages that vaginal babies have over C-Section babies, it comes as a no surprise that naturally born babies demonstrate better health throughout their life in various ways. They’re less prone to health issues, including allergies and conditions like asthma, less likely to develop metabolic diseases like Diabetes Type 1 and 2, they cope with stresses of life better, and they’re less prone to depression and more serious mental disorders, just to name a few.
And for you, mommy-to-be, a natural birth will mean a shorter hospital stay, more cost-effective birth, quicker recovery, lower risks of any post-op complications and infections, better bonding with your baby, and last but not least, a heightened sense of accomplishment and empowerment. So, my lovely ladies, for the sake of your baby, for the sake of our future generations, unless there’s a true medical necessity, let’s push our babies out naturally, the way mother nature intended!
So very truly yours,