I don't know if I qualify to answer -- i had an unassisted childbirth with my first, so no attendant and no interventions.
How was the birth of your first? - Page 9
Poll Results: What was your FIRST baby's birth like? (check all that apply)
37% (204)100% Natural
15% (83)Pitocin (or other contraction stimulant)
17% (92)Epidural (or other pain/sleep meds)
we were prepared for bradley birth, and also had a friend serving as a doula.
my waters broke, at 40 w 3 days, and i labored at home for 24 hrs, met my ob at the hospital, he did a check, no dilation nor effacement. (i had refused the strep test so had no way of knowing the status of that-- became a risk factor) had maximum pitocin for 8 + hours.. multiple vaginal checks and still no dilation nor effacement and it seemed as though there was the loss of a lot of fluid. so we had a c-birth. dd was also over 10 pounds at birth, so it could have been malpositioning, my age, lots of other factors.
My son was born at 36 weeks. When I got to the hospital, I was only about 1cm dialated. Everyone, except me, thought it was very unlikely I'd have him that day, but they figured they'd run the vitals and have me fill out the paperwork and whatnot. Almost immediately, my water broke and super painful contractions began. In less than an hour, I was up to 7cm dialated and requested an epidural. The nurse was actually trying to convince me to try a more natural approach first, but at that point I really wanted the pain relief. I did not have any pain with the epidural insertion (it was nothing compared to contractions), but it did suddenly slow down the birthing process. After about another hour, they gave me another medicine to get the contractions going again. I then pushed for three hours and my son starting showing signs of distress. He was right there, but not coming out. Somehow, he'd worked himself into an odd angle, so the pushing wasn't effective. They used a vacuum to get him all the way out. I ended up with all sorts of tearing, but thankfully couldn't feel it due to the epidural. As odd as it may sound, I did enjoy my son's birth. It was a wonderful event. I'm really not sure how things would have gone without as much medical intervention. Some things may have been better and some worse. Overall, I have zero regrets. My son and I are/were both healthy, so that's really the most important outcome of it all.
I had a birth that was "natural" enough for me. The only interventions were GBS antibiotics (IV then heplocked) and AROM during pushing. I labored at home with very manageable contractions for about 24 hours before finally being convinced to head into the Midwifery office for a check. The check revealed I was 9 cm dilated and I was admitted to the attached hospital. I guess the other way my birth had some "external management" was they started seeing signs of infection so asked that I start pushing before I had the urge to - even though I'd been complete for some time. Otherwise the hospital staff and midwife were very hands off. Actually I kind of enjoyed the hospital experience as a nice change of pace. But if I spent my whole 30 hour labor and delivery there I'd probable be singing a different tune. Oh, we also had a doula and I did Hypnobirthing during my pregnancy.
I think it depends on how long you labor at home. I was with a midwife practice that delivered both in a hospital and a birth center. I was risked out of the birth center for slightly elevated BP, so I had to go to the hospital to give birth. I labored at home for 12 hours and kept in touch with the midwives, then stopped by the birth center so they could check my progress. Fortunately I was at 6 cm and we went on to the hospital, where I was only in the room for 4 hours before he was born. The midwives took care of ordering noninvasive monitoring (I guess it was intermittent, but I was so out of it I don't remember much except that I was mobile most of the time I was there). I had a hep lock but no IV. By that point I was not hungry anyway. My labor actually picked up once I learned that I had made progress, so there was no reason for augmentation. An epidural did not occur to me until I was in transition, and then they got me up on the bed and I pushed the baby out.
Now, had I gone to the hospital before I did, and had an OB rather than midwives, it might have been a whole different story. My labor was erratic during those 12 hours -- it slowed down and started back up depending on what I was doing (bathtub and reclining on couch slowed it down, climbing stairs and walking sped it up). The contractions were never in a consistent pattern. The 5-1-1 rule, for example, would have gotten me there first thing that morning, which would have been a HUGE mistake. So for FTMs, I absolutely think that staying home as long as possible is the key.
I agree with this, but for some its hard to labor at home long enough!
For a first time mom going to a hospital, I think I'd recommend a montrice - someone to maybe monitor the 'home' part and make sure a mom goes in at a good time (as active labor starts, maybe) to minimize interventions. I loved my hospital though - the nurses were amazing, and w/ my first I had 30min of wanting to push w/ still a 1/2 cm of cervix left, so they really were great about coaching me through breathing through the ctx. They were really awesome.
Edited by seafox - 10/6/11 at 7:14am