? about baby's condition at birth - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 05-19-2004, 12:08 PM - Thread Starter
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My last birth ended up being very very quick. My water broke, 15 minutes later contractions begun in full force, and an hour & a half after that I was holding my new daughter in my arms. We had a planned homebirth (2nd time around) but the speed of the birth left us unattended for it. My body did the pushing for me (I was in a birth tub), her head came out and sat there for about a minute or so, then I pushed the rest of her out. My dh lifted her to my chest and she looked perfect - totally pink in color and clean. But the thing is, she didn't cry or open her eyes. She looked like she was completely asleep and was limp. Well, in the heat of this unexpected moment, I decided that he better cut the cord so he could move her out of the tub where I was hoping the cooler air would get her to take a breath (in retrospect I suppose I should have thought to let her keep breathing through the cord, but that didn't occur to me in the moment for some reason). So he cut the cord, moved her to the floor on top of a towel and began trying to stimulate her. He's a firefighter/paramedic, but that night he was just a dad who had just had an unplanned U/C birth and was pretty panicky. He never thought to check her pulse or to see if she was indeed breathing. He just rubbed her down, flicked her feet, and talked to her trying to get her to breathe. I was completely calm the whole time just sitting there in the tub watching, wanting to ask him to verify her sex but thinking I'd better wait until she started breathing. I knew she'd be fine, but he was scared. Looking back, I can't help but wonder what was actually going on with her. I had one person tell me that they heard when a baby is born that quickly they can sometimes be knocked out by the experience. Being that her color was excellent I'm not really concerned that she was being oxygen deprived (she never started to turn blue), but I just want to know. Could she have simply been sleeping??? Is it possible? She was an excellent sleeper for the first 3 months, so maybe??? I'm really interested to hear what people - especially birth attendants who've witnessed something like this - think! I know it's all speculation at this point but I'd still love to hear.

Mama to four remarkable kiddos, all born at home.
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#2 of 7 Old 05-19-2004, 01:30 PM
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My brother was a UC birth and was born asleep after 12 hours of labor. I was born awake and looking around, but not crying. I think we are used to expecting babies to scream after birth. As long as they are breathing, I don't think it's necessary that they cry.
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#3 of 7 Old 05-19-2004, 01:32 PM
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She was just floppy. Probably stunned from the fast entry. If color is good, I would just do what your DH did, but on you with the cord intact. Sounds like nothing was wrong, its a normel thing and what your DH did worked. APGAR scores are based on 5 things: color, heartrate, cry, muscle tone, and breathing. 0, 1 or 2 points to each one, but remember it is done at 1 minute not at birth. They do it at 1 minute because many babies take a few seconds to get a breath and a little while to get muscle tone and pink up. I very compromised baby is apparent, they are blue or white, very floppy and gasp or make no attempt to breathe. Your little girl sounds like she was justy stunned and fine.
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#4 of 7 Old 05-19-2004, 04:08 PM
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I often see that waterbirthed babies do not make that immediate quick cry transition that land babies do. But, up against mom, with the cord intact, they usually come around within a minute or so. It helps, too, if mom speaks to them.
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#5 of 7 Old 05-19-2004, 06:08 PM
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Funny you should post this. DH and I have been watching a lot of birthing videos and I was surprised that the babies often don't start breathing right away. I didn't expect to see that at all. In fact, I have pondered that it must be stressful for the MW (or whomever) to have to wait for that first breath to occur.

I hope it's not stressful for me...

DS 6 DD 8
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#6 of 7 Old 05-20-2004, 12:07 AM
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My older dd was a very quick unplanned homebirth and she also did not cry at all after delivery. She lay in my arms and just looked asleep. She was pink and breathing calmly, though, so we didn't bother her. If baby is breathing and pink, they don't have to cry to be doing fine.
On the other hand, sometimes babies who are stunned at delivery will take a while to start to breathe on their own. These babies sometimes need a little stimulation to get going. These babies often have a stunned look on their face and aren't moving.
A baby who doesn't breathe on their own with stimulation and drying needs more aggressive resuscitation.
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#7 of 7 Old 05-20-2004, 11:56 AM
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That is so cool to me to think about a baby being born sleeping and content...

Sorry, no input, just in awe of the idea
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