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What position are you wanting to give birth in or try when it's time to push?

Posted by on Jan. 21, 2009 at 9:54 PM
  • 13 Replies

I am hoping to either squat or be on my hands on knees and I have NO intention of giving birth on my back while being "supported" in the hospital bed in the "traditional" way again.

I've been looking into other birthing positions but maybe some of you are planning to try something I haven't heard of yet??

SO what type of birthing positions are you planning to try? If you've given birth before is there a specific position you prefer to give birth in more than another?

by on Jan. 21, 2009 at 9:54 PM
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Replies (1-10):
nici3
by on Jan. 21, 2009 at 9:57 PM

the yoga position "prayer" was SO comfortable for me. I refused to move.....but eventually had to. I wouldn't recommend planning it. When I was planning it I thought there was NO way I'd ever be on all fours because I didnt want my butt in my drs face....You'll move around so much that you'll find something right...

mom23boys679
by on Jan. 21, 2009 at 10:00 PM
I'd love to squat but who knows how much they'll have me barred to the bed if I end up with a VBAC...
miasmommy21407
by Bronze Member on Jan. 21, 2009 at 10:01 PM


Quoting nici3:

the yoga position "prayer" was SO comfortable for me. I refused to move.....but eventually had to. I wouldn't recommend planning it. When I was planning it I thought there was NO way I'd ever be on all fours because I didnt want my butt in my drs face....You'll move around so much that you'll find something right...


Well of course I plan to do whatever feels right to me at the time but I know with my daughter I had an EXTREMELY strong urge to squat and to get on all 4s so I'm hoping to try those but will do what my body tells me. I just don't want to be stuck in a bed in a positions that actually makes the pelvis smaller. Ya know?

MrsJacqueline
by on Jan. 21, 2009 at 11:16 PM

I was hoping to be in a semi-sitting position with my husband behind me for support. Is that a good position to give birth in?

miasmommy21407
by Bronze Member on Jan. 21, 2009 at 11:27 PM


Quoting MrsJacqueline:

I was hoping to be in a semi-sitting position with my husband behind me for support. Is that a good position to give birth in?


Well ideally anything that uses gravity is best. Basically there are LOTS of positions you can give birth in but the position that most people use (you know the one you seen EVERY person in a movie or sitcom using...sorry can't think of the technical term for it right now) actually makes the pelvis smaller.

You know how many women say "I had to have an emergency c-section because my baby was stuck after pushing for hours" Unfortuantly in many of these cases if the women had of squatted (often called the midwives forceps) or got on her hands and knees the baby would have come out and the c-section would never have been preformed.

Most of this position is used because it's considered easiest for doctors but I've seen many of doctors and midwives deliver babies in lots of other positions. Plus it may be convenient for the doc but it certainly isn't convenient for the women doing all the work. That position also can extend pushing time.

Optimist80
by on Jan. 22, 2009 at 5:25 AM

At first i was getting really worked up on the many various birth positions out there, since then i've envisioned myself on my hands and knees to give birth. Unfortunately it seems that the only position entertained by the mid-wives here is on your back with your legs up, and i have to learn to accept that. I would have also liked a home birth but again this is not an option where i live.

nici3
by on Jan. 22, 2009 at 5:30 AM

As long as you listen to your body I see no problems. If my sons head hadn't gotten stuck, I probably would have pushed him all the way out on my hands and knees. Sadly he had to be vaccuumed out so I had to be on my back.

Quoting miasmommy21407:


Quoting nici3:

the yoga position "prayer" was SO comfortable for me. I refused to move.....but eventually had to. I wouldn't recommend planning it. When I was planning it I thought there was NO way I'd ever be on all fours because I didnt want my butt in my drs face....You'll move around so much that you'll find something right...


Well of course I plan to do whatever feels right to me at the time but I know with my daughter I had an EXTREMELY strong urge to squat and to get on all 4s so I'm hoping to try those but will do what my body tells me. I just don't want to be stuck in a bed in a positions that actually makes the pelvis smaller. Ya know?


srenee1988
by on Jan. 22, 2009 at 5:47 AM

IDK...I had to do the traditional way...i had an epidural.......I wanted to try a water birth..seems so peaceful.. but insurance wouldn't cover it...and since i have a bleeding disorder...i pretty much have to be stitched up as fast as the baby comes out (the doc actually had to go in and remove my placenta by hand to prevent any excess bleeding...) So...with all the extra precautions they'll have to take...i'll probably be back in the traditional pose...but this time...i want my SO to sit behind me for support...that'll make it easier..(and maybe with his support..i won't need the epi... just maybe..)

Lilypie 1st Birthday PicLilypie 1st Birthday Ticker

MrsNocke
by on Jan. 22, 2009 at 6:06 AM

I laid on my side my mid wife held one leg and i pulled up on my other.... it really was not that bad.

loli_usn17
by on Jan. 22, 2009 at 6:17 AM

I really want to try and squat, but we'll see when the time comes. Here are a list, though, so you can familiarize yourself with what may work:

 

Effective Birthing Positions

The following pictures demonstrate positions that can be used for pushing as well as for giving birth. You may try several of these positions during the second stage of your labor. Consider trying them out at home, before labor starts, as well. Don't actually push or bear down as you "practice" a position, but simply get into each position and maintain it for the length of a contraction (about 60-70 seconds), consider what support you need to get into the position, where pillows and hands of helpers can support you most effectively, and how you would assume a position of rest and relaxation after the contraction is over.

The position of your body is important as you push. Notice in each position that the mother is curved forward, and that her head is down. Curling forward and tucking your chin helps the baby to navigate the curves of the pelvis. Arching your back and neck is much less helpful to this process.  In many positions, notice that the mother has grasped her legs behind her knees and pulls her legs back. When doing this, it is most effective if your elbows are out, as if you were rowing a boat. If others help support your legs, they should merely support them, not force them back or apart. These position adjustments are things that your birth partner(s) can remind you of as you push.    

Birthing bar

pregnant woman using birthing bar during laborA birthing bar is an attachment that can be added to most labor beds to help facilitate a squatting position. The squatting position helps to expand the size of your pelvis, and uses gravity to promote the downward movement of your baby. When using the bar, the foot of the bed can be dropped, and the head of the bed raised high. Between contractions, you can sit, supported by the head of the bed, and then during contractions, move forward to squat, supported by the bar. 

There is an alternative way to use the birthing bar. The vertical supports of the bar are used to rest your feet, and a sheet or towel is looped over the top of the bar. During the contractions, you grasp and pull back on the sheet as you push downward. This alternative might be helpful if you are too short to be comfortably supported by the bar in the squatting position or if you have had an epidural and your legs are too numb to safely support you in a squatting position.

pregnant woman using birthing stool during laborBirthing stool

A birthing stool can help you push in a very familiar position: the position you are used to using for having a bowel movement. Additionally, the low height of the stool flexes your legs and expands the size of your pelvis, and the upright position helps use gravity to promote the downward movement of the baby. You would push in the position shown, and then between contractions can lean backward to rest supported by your partner.

  

  

  

  

Sitting upright

pregnant woman sitting upright during laborThis upright sitting position is a variation on the use of a birthing stool. Notice how the mother is curled forward around her baby, with her elbows out as she pushes. The head of the bed is raised high, and the foot of the bed is lowered, giving you a place to place your feet. Like the use of the stool, this position helps you use gravity effectively. Between contractions, you can lean backward supported by the bed. If you like, your partner can also sit behind you in bed as you use this position.

  

  

  

  

Kneeling

pregnant woman kneeling during laborWhile pushing or giving birth on your knees may be used by any woman, it may be especially effective if you have had back pain during labor, as it helps to encourage movement of the baby. During the contraction, you flex your hips and lower your buttocks slightly as you push. Between contractions, you can drape yourself over the head of the bed to rest and relax. You may try this position on your hands and knees, but, as your wrists may quickly become tired of supporting your body, you may find it easier to rest on your forearms as illustrated by this mother. In an alternative to this position, you may drape your upper body over a birthing ball.

  

Semi-seated, with support

pregnant woman in labor, with support of doula, husband and midwifeThis position is not as effective in opening the pelvis as the upright positions illustrated above, but is probably the most common position used for the actual birth of baby - not necessarily because it is the best position for birth but, as you can imagine, it is the most convenient position for your doctor or midwife. In this illustration, notice that the head of the bed is raised to at least 30 degrees or greater, and that the mother has a pillow placed under her right hip, helping her turn slightly to the left. These adjustments help keep the weight of her uterus and baby from interfering with blood flow through the vessels that flow behind them. Notice also that she is curled forward around her baby, holding behind her knees, and that her support people are merely supporting her legs and her upper back, not pushing on them.

Side, curled position

pregnant woman lying on side during labor

The side-lying position is especially useful in promoting rest and relaxation between pushing contractions. Some research suggests that this is the most effective birthing position for preventing tears.

 

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