Evidence on Eating Dates to Start Labor

https://evidencebasedbirth.com/evidence-eating-dates-to-start-labor/

This has been a hot topic in the doula world for a while.

(Click link above to watch the video on EBB website regarding dates and labor!)

In today’s Q & A, part of our Natural Induction Series, we’re going to talk about eating the date fruit or Phoenix dactylifera to induce labor naturally. The date fruit contains a high percentage of carbohydrates and fats and also includes 15 different types of salts and minerals, proteins and vitamins, such as riboflavin, thiamine, biotin, folic acid, and ascorbic acid. Some Islamic scholars interpret verses in the Quran to mean that dates are one of the best foods to eat for childbirth. There have been three smaller randomized control trials on eating dates to induce labor and one observational study that asked women about how often they eat dates to induce labor.

In this video, you will learn:

  • About the studies that have been conducted on eating date fruit to find out whether it can improve birth outcomes with:

    • Cervical ripening
    • The use of labor induction/augmentation with oxytocin
    • Postpartum blood loss
  • If eating date fruit during pregnancy is safe

 

Show Me Your Cochrane!

http://www.orgasmicbirth.com/cochrane/

(click link to read blog on orgasmicbirth.com)

Turning a page for Maternity Care

I am pleasantly surprised that we may be FINALLY  turning a page in the her-story of medicalized maternity care. While most fields of medicine base their practices on the latest and best science, maternity care has been in the dark ages, leaving a huge gap between what science knows and what we practice.  This gap puts MotherBabies at risk, creates birth trauma and ultimately has added to the growing FEAR of childbirth that many expectant parents and even some providers feel.

(click link to keep reading…)

Fearing childbirth may prolong labor

http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2012/06/27/fearing-childbirth-may-prolong-labor/

Dr. Stuart Fischbein chuckled when he read the title of the press release: “Women with a fear of childbirth endure a longer labor.”

The release was promoting a study published this week in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.  Researchers at Akershus University Hospital in Norway found women who feared giving birth were in labor for 1 hour and 32 minutes longer, on average, than those who had no fear.

“I’m glad there’s now evidence to say that,” Fischbein said, “but it’s obvious.”

For those of us who aren’t OB/GYNs, it may seem more like a cruel joke. Women who are afraid of the pain and the possible medical complications associated with giving birth have to suffer through it longer?

(click link at top to read article on cnn.com)

Avoiding These 4 Things May Help You Have the Birth You Want

http://www.mothering.com/articles/researcher-advises-stop-thinking-avoid-4-ls/

(click link above to read on Mothering.com)

For those of you who don’t know, Michel Odent is a world-famous researcher and obstetrician who ran a maternity unit in France for, I think, 86 years. Yeah, he’s that good. He is recognized for his extensive research concerning how we are born. All the stuff that midwives and women have known for generations, he is putting the science to. All of the interventions and procedures that have come about in the last few generations, he’s questioning if they’re best for women and babies.

Much of his work is concerning the fact that how we are born matters. Reading his books changed the way I think about birth and the way I teach about birth.

Your own mind gets in the way.

Of supreme importance is that a woman can STOP THINKING. To birth easily and quickly, you have to turn off the human part of your brain–the neo-cortex. We are the only animal with such a huge thinking part of our brains. We’re pretty smart.

The problem is the the neo-cortex inhibits physiological actions. When you are thinking–when your neo-cortex is in control, you don’t release the right hormones, your body can’t relax. Birth is harder and longer.

It’s like sex. (Isn’t it always?) You have to turn off your brain first in order to enjoy it. You have to be making the right hormones and the right brain waves to get into it. You can’t orgasm if you’re full of adrenaline and cortisol. You can’t birth, either.

It’s like how some people don’t poop on vacation. Sphincters don’t open in the presence of adrenaline. You have to feel relaxed and totally safe.

Who feels totally safe and relaxed giving birth these days? Almost no one. We’ve socialized and medicalized birth too much. Birth is not inner work anymore. Instead of softening into the birth process, we spend most of our energy avoiding risk. Birth is a reason to be on high alert.

Michel Odent says that is to our detriment.

“To give birth to her baby, the mother needs privacy. She needs to feel unobserved.” She needs to turn off neo-cortical control.

Here are four things that turn on the neo-cortex and make birth hard:  (click link above to read the blog)

How to Align Baby for an Easier, Faster Birth

http://www.mothering.com/articles/align-baby-easier-faster-birth/

(click to read)

Your baby has an active role in her birth. She must rotate and tuck, hold and kick her body in certain ways to be born.

These movements, called cardinal movements, are instinctive to babies and differ for babies in different positions. Our babies and bodies birth quickest and safest when the baby is head-down, facing the mother’s back, crown first. But, sometimes babies need help taking up the most ideal position. Breech babies have their own cardinal movements to be born safely.

Babies who are lined up optimally for birth come out faster and easier than those who aren’t positioned perfectly.

Many cesareans happen because the baby is not able to get in the best position for birth.

There are a few different pelvic shapes or types. Some pelvic shapes require that the baby take a certain, optimal position, while others can accommodate a number of different ways out. Don’t worry too much about pelvic shape unless you already know yours is unusual or your babies have trouble descending.

For many women, their babies can be born backwards (posterior), upside-down (breech), face first, or with with their head tilted a bit (ascynclitic), but it’s typically a harder or more complicated labor and birth.

Modern life has us using our body in a way that confuses or restricts the baby’s movement.
Here is what you can do during pregnancy to provide for the best chance and good alignment and faster, easier birth…

(click link above to read this helpful article)

LAUGHING GAS CHANGING THE WAY WOMEN ENDURE LABOR PAIN

http://abc7.com/health/laughing-gas-changing-the-way-women-endure-labor-pain/1429757/

**Currently St. John’s in Santa Monica and GraceFull Birthing Center in Silverlake are the only facilities in the LA area that offer nitrous oxide during labor, to my knowledge. 

Many women have turned to laughing gas as a drug-free alternative to get through the pains of childbirth.

New mom Megan Edmonds gave birth to baby Asher with the help of laughing gas, also known as nitrous oxide.

“My goal was to, to try to get through with no drugs and no epidural. It just takes the edge off. I would say about 35 to 40 percent of the edge in the beginning of contractions and everything,” Edmonds said.

It changes and alters the perception of pain for patients, according to Dr. Albert Phillips at the Providence Saint John’s Health Center (PSJHC).

The PSJHC is the first hospital in the region to offer nitrous oxide for birthing moms.

“Nitrous oxide is actually being used all over the world, but here in the United States it didn’t seem to get as much favor as it did in other parts of the world,” Phillips said.

(click link at top to read entire article on abc7.com)

 

Why A Birthing Ball Can Help In Labor

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/well-rounded-ny/why-a-birthing-ball-can-h_b_10724180.html

The mere idea of sitting on an unsteady birthing ball during labor (and even pregnancy!) can be daunting. But when used properly, birthing balls, also known as exercise and fitness balls) are excellent tools to sustain a healthy pregnancy and successful labor. Indeed, birthing ball exercises can give you the strength and stability that you need to speed up dilation, move baby down into the pelvis, and even manage labor and delivery pain. What’s more, birthing balls are affordable, effective and versatile (you can use them well after birth to help with postpartum pain and breastfeeding, and children tend to think they’re great fun to play with), and you can involve your partner, doula or friend depending on where you choose to deliver. It’s no wonder, then, that so many midwives and birth doulas (myself included) recommend them to their clients.

(Click link  above to read on Huffingtonpost.com)