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squatting during birth - Page 2

post #21 of 57
I have wanted to squat every time to prevent tearing, but I always end up in the C-curl position as the only way I can make any progress.
post #22 of 57
I wanted to squat with my first but the nurses said they didn't know how to break down the bed that way when I was told during our tour and from another nurse that they would do that for me. With my second my mw told me to get on the bed in a hands and knees position. I tried to turn to squatting but at that point felt like I was sitting on his head so turned back. My other 2 were born in hands and knees. It is much easier for me to push that way.
post #23 of 57
I totally would not have the stamina to stay squatting that long. I went through different positions while laboring but ultimately my favorite birth position was kneeling in front of the bed while supporting my upper body by leaning on the bed.
I also have really long thigh bones - not a lot of clearance for the baby ... LOL
post #24 of 57
I squatted with both. My biggest baby was 9 lbs 12 oz, and I didn't tear with either.
post #25 of 57
I squatted with my last 2, one of them in the hospital with the squatting bar. My pushing experience with them was *worlds* apart from my first 2 babies that I pushed out flat on my back.

When I delivered flat on my back I pushed for a torturously long time (2.5 hours with #2), & tore both times. When I squatted, I didn't push even 20 mins & I didn't tear at all. Plus, those were the 2 births where I felt in control- I chose what positions to be in by what naturally felt the best. And wow, I had no idea how much more comfortable squatting could be!

The babies I delivered in a squat with no tearing in the slightest were 8lbs 13oz, and 10lbs 6oz.
post #26 of 57
squatting does make sense--Even if minimally, it does open you up a little more than you would in other positions. I did not squat once during my labor, but when I was ready to push, I slid off the side of the bed, leaned a bit back against the bed and squatted until my baby was born--in about 20 minutes. My legs were killing me, but I wanted that little bit of extra opening (I think it's like 1-2 cm).

My first birth was in a hospital and to be honest, there is very little possibility of me having squatted there. When squatting you really need a firm floor and good support around/behind you. The hospital bed would not have worked--too unstable. If they let you squat on the floor, that would be ideal--possibly with your dh/doula behind you sitting in a chair and you can straddle your arms over their legs for support. I would even consider bringing some type of a thick mat, maybe a yoga mat or a foam egg crate mat for both support and comfort--those tile floors are hard/slippery/and just nasty.

I am having a home birth again this time and am making my own birthing stool. I was pretty comfy sitting on the toilet, but my bathroom is really small and I just can't sit in the bathroom that long...bathrooms are yucky. My midwife's birthing stool is hard-wood-small-and not comfy at all. I'm building a small replica of the toilet, but with a cushy seat and a little lower than a toilet for extra squat.


editting to add: with number 1 I was in a semi-upright position, but essentially on my back and I tore a little, baby #2 that I squatted I didn't tear/rip or anything. both were 20 minutes pushing though (good birthing hips? lol) also, I didn't practice squatting at all during my pregnancy--and I'm not naturally strong and am also overweight--also after 7 hours of labor--sometimes your body allows you to do amazing things!
post #27 of 57
All this talk of squatting bars and beds and chairs made me think of this article, a little food for thought: The Clock, The Bed, and The Chair.
post #28 of 57
Originally Posted by Full Heart View Post
I have very fast pushing stage (my longest was 30 min) so I think its probably better if I actually slowed things down and not helped it out lol.
This was my experience last birth-- I was on my knees leaning on the bed during the pushing stage and kind of tipping my belly the "wrong" way-- against gravity-- but it felt SOOO good. Midwife really insisted I get in a squatting position as she felt that I couldn't give birth efficiently going against gravity. So I did get into a squatting position, and what do you know, baby came shooting out with too much pressure and I tore pretty badly. I think if I had stuck with my inuition he would have come more slowly and peacefully and gently. I wish I hadn't tore so much because it gave me sexual issues for months.

So I think that squatting can be great, but the important thing is just to listen to your intuition in the moment!
post #29 of 57
Originally Posted by LionTigerBear View Post
I was on my knees leaning on the bed during the pushing stage and kind of tipping my belly the "wrong" way-- against gravity-- but it felt SOOO good.
Mmmm, this is sort of like me too -- I was on my hands and knees, leaning tipped down on the back of the bed in between pushing contractions. Then, during a contraction, I'd do sort of a back curl up to more traditional hands-and knees position, tucking my tailbone. Pushing stage went very fast.
post #30 of 57
I tried squatting (they had a bar over the bed at my hospital) but I was just too weak to do it. I did like laboring on the toilet, and that seemed to help me make progress. Pushing-wise, I wound up on my back. I only pushed for 15 min, though. If it had been longer, I might have wound up trying more things.
post #31 of 57
I always envisioned squatting for DD birth. But I ended up in the tub for an hour till it was time to push and then when I got to the bed (hospital policy) I tried hands and knees and it wasn't working so my midwife suggested on back with legs up to help the pressure on my perenium and that's where I stayed. I pushed for an hour. Now thinking back maybe I should have tried some other positions and it may not have been so long...my doula will hopefully remind me of that this time! My body just took over and I couldn't even think! I need to practice my squats though or I'll never make it that way! I'm hoping the birth stool is available for me and I'm brining my birth ball but I know in hospital here you have to actually deliever in the bed.
post #32 of 57
Moved to Birth and Beyond.
post #33 of 57
I just had my first two days ago, and I had a long hard time pushing him out. Over 3 hours. My midwife had to keep coaxing me back and forth into different positions to help him along. I think I must have spent about an hour of that time with the squatting bar on the hospital bed. I sat back on the bed between contractions, and pulled myself into the squat to push, which let me do it for longer while keeping my leg strength up.
post #34 of 57
I squatted on the bed with #4 and loved it as I already posted, but I remember with #3 at one point I sat backwards on the toilet seat and it felt soooo good! I said, "Can I just birth here?" My midwife said, "That's probably not a good idea!"

I ended up delivering her on my back. Tried sqatting on the bed but hated it. Funny how it's different with all babies. Whatever your body is telling you to do, then do it! I just wish I could have stayed on the toilet!
post #35 of 57
I squatted for my HBAC. It was awesome. It was the most effective position I tried, and it enabled me to birth my son into my own hands. It also used the force of gravity to snap my tailbone out of the way so he could make it through my narrow pelvis!
post #36 of 57
I didn't read all of the replies but DS2 was born in a squat and I didn't plan it that way. I planned a waterbirth but then he started crowning and I felt the intense need to get out of the tub. I made my way over to the bed and a contraction started and I instinctively squatted and he literally popped right out! It was quite funny because I wasn't expecting it and really just wanted to get to the bed. Squatting is an awesome way to use gravity and widen your pelvis to help the baby out! I'll use it again this time around.
post #37 of 57
In my prenatal class I'd heard that they have what's called a push bar... attached to the hospital bed.

During my labour I 'had to' stand for every contraction, sitting or laying down was unbearable to me. (only later I reflected that standing makes them stronger... no wonder my LO was born in 2 hours! And I wanted a break ! - Duh!)

When I started pushing I still wanted to be upright so asked for the bar. The nurse didn't even know if they had one or where it would be but quickly found it in the room and fixed it onto the bed - I climbed up and with a solid bar to hold onto (at chest height when I'm squatting) it took the pressure off my legs and was awesome. Probably nice for the MW to have me not on the floor too. Fourteen minutes of pushing (felt like 5) and he was here. (Big head and no tearing.)

Reading the other posts it seems that our bodies do just take over when in labour so trust that you'll find what's best for you... and know your options. Good luck!
post #38 of 57
Really interesting thread.
post #39 of 57
I read somewhere online that if you use a birthing stool too long that you have a higher possibility of deep tearing. It's not because of squatting, but because of the birth stool. That's upsetting to read, I wonder what my midwife will say about that.

post #40 of 57
I squated while my husband helped support me and then sat on the birthing stool where my daughter was born.I definitely found it helpful to be in that position.
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