Ask any mom whose pregnancy went into extra innings: Right around your due date, the phone calls, emails and texts start coming: “Is anything happening?” “What does the doctor say?” “Wellll????” Playing the waiting game during the last few weeks of pregnancy is hard, but it becomes especially difficult when 40 weeks turn into 41 . . . or 42. But the first thing to know is this: Your due date is just an estimate. In fact, only 5 percent of babies are born on theirs.
After reaching record highs for almost a decade, the Cesarean section rate in the United States has dropped, The Associated Press reports. According to new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention figures, C-section rate was 32.8 percent in 2010—down slightly from 32.9 percent in 2009.
Oregon, my home state, is being heralded as the latest state to take a hard line on out of control c-sections and inductions. Here’s what the headlines say:
Hospitals take 'hard stop' on early elective C-sections and inductions -
Oregon is the latest state where some hospitals are refusing to do the procedures before 39 weeks of pregnancy.
Knowing your herpes simplex virus status makes you better prepared to deal with it. Many cases of neonatal transmission occur with mothers who don’t know they have the virus. Fortunately, while roughly 25 percent to 30 percent of pregnant women have herpes, less than 0.1 percent of babies contract it. Risk is increased if a woman has an outbreak at the time of delivery, because active viral cells present in the vagina can be very dangerous for her baby.
A Fit Pregnancy editor takes us behind the scenes at the C-section delivery of her twins.
Having a Cesarean might seem like the easier and safer way to give birth, but it’s not. Here’s why it’s riskier for you and your baby, plus five ways to avoid having one.
We all know that giving birth rarely happens like it does on TV shows: Your water breaks; you gasp, exclaim, “She’s coming!” Then, lipstick refreshed, you cradle your newborn as your handsome husband looks on. Alternatively, we hope your experience isn’t going to be fodder for reality TV: A swarm of doctors sprints into the delivery room, shouting, “Get the NICU team, STAT! We’ve got a quadruple nuchal and need a cold-knife section!”
When Eveline Andrews, 28, of Baytown, Texas, was in labor with her first baby three years ago, her doctor told her that she had a narrow pelvis and required a Cesarean section. But when Andrews became pregnant again about a year after giving birth, she felt strongly that she did not want surgery again. At first her obstetrician refused to agree to let her try for a vaginal birth after Cesarean (VBAC) because he felt a repeat C-section would be safer. Andrews persisted, however, and her doctor gave in—and at 40 weeks, she had an uncomplicated vaginal delivery.
When I ended up having a Cesarean section with my first child, Dylan, 10 years ago, I wasn't that surprised. Disappointed and nervous, yes, but not surprised. Not only was I aware of the fairly high C-section rate in this country even then, but I also realized that some babies just have to be delivered with, as they say, surgical intervention. And when I found out I was pregnant with twins last year, I knew that because of my medical history, I was destined for another C-section. This time around, I was completely OK with it: I knew what to expect, so I wasn't nearly as nervous.
It may be the last thing on your mind, but around six to eight weeks after having that baby, your doctor is going to give you the green light for sex. Be prepared: The big deed may be less than pleasant.
Childbirth has become super competitive. I don’t know if this is new to the last 50 years or if women have always judged how and where they give birth as a measure of maternal perfection. Maybe the Stone Age woman bragged her birth was better than some other cave woman’s birth because she pushed her little Neanderthal out on a rock; clearly making her more bad-ass, natural, and a better mother than those wimp moms who delivered in a cave.