Natural Birth Vs. Caesarean
Medical advancements have made it possible for women to choose how they want to deliver their baby. While many women opt for Caesarean delivery (aka C-section), others insist on delivering naturally. But which one is right for you? Here's some information to help you decide.
Advantages of delivering naturally
Safety: Since there is no need for using catheters, forceps or vacuum devices, the risk of your baby being harmed is minimal. Empowerment: Many women report feeling exhilarated, highly aware and empowered after delivering naturally.
Minimal medication: Many women need little or no medication when delivering vaginally.
Mobility: Since you won't be hooked to a monitor or IV, you can do whatever is necessary to feel comfortable.
Recovery: You will be released from the hospital within two days and might get back on your feet within a week.
Disadvantages of delivering naturally
Pain: You need considerable tolerance for pain and a lot of stamina to deliver vaginally.
Patience: Although the average labour time is approximately five hours, women can remain in labour for as long as 24 hours or more! You'll have to remain patient and cooperative. Exhaustion: Since natural births don't need pain management, many mothers feel completely drained by the end of it.
Blood loss: A natural delivery might lead to abnormal blood loss, requiring emergency procedures.
Advantages of delivering via Caesarean
Relatively painless: Just like all major surgical procedures, you'll be anaesthetised for a C-section, meaning you won't feel any pain.
Less time: Although the average Caesarean lasts about three hours, doctors can deliver babies via C-section within minutes if necessary.
Less harmful for the mother: You won't experience urinary or faecal incontinence, pelvic floor damage or perineal tearing.
Safer for baby: A C-section can save your baby from oxygen deprivation and many types of foetal distress.
Disadvantages of delivering via Caesarean
Longer recovery time: Many women take months to recover from a C-section. You won't be able to lift heavy objects, have sex, drive or exercise for several weeks after surgery.
Complications: Blood loss, uterine rupture, infections and organ injury are often associated with Caesareans.
Scarring: The C-section incision (horizontal) will be about five inches long, just above your pubic hairline, and might take upto a year to heal. However, when the scar heals completely, it is barely noticeable.
Your decision to opt for natural childbirth or a C-section is something you and your partner must discuss with your gynaecologist. S/he will explain the advantages and disadvantages of each option in greater detail and will also recommend what is best for you based on your age and medical history.