6 simple secrets for upping your chances of a natural birth

When I was pregnant with my first child, I wanted to go natural. No interventions for me! Women have birthed for eons without assistance—so I certainly didn’t need to pay attention in my labor class or hire a doula. My nutrition and exercise regimen? Digging organic cheese crackers out of my couch cushions. But as my labor dragged past the 22-hour, no-sleep, what’s-going-on mark, I actually begged my doctor for a C-section. We compromised on an epidural, and my daughter was born an hour …

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Are you scared to give birth?

Here at Pregnancy Magazine, we're proud to tell the stories of expectant moms like you. Now, it's your turn to chime in. Take a moment to add your voice to our latest pregnancy poll below. Once you've shared your thoughts, you'll have the chance to see what other moms are saying, too. So, what are you waiting for? Vote now! 

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How will I feel after a C-section?

The number of mothers who undergo Cesarean sections is on the rise - accounting for nearly 37 percent of U.S. births in 2013, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. While a C-section should never be taken lightly - it is major abdominal surgery after all - there are instances where it's nothing short of lifesaving for both mom and baby. So, if your physician has recommended that you plan for a C-section, what can you expect?Alone time: While each hospital's policies may …

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Would you give birth under water?

When you’re pregnant, choosing between “baby chick” or “sun porch” yellow paint for the nursery can seem like a life-altering decision. So when it comes to the big choices, such as deciding on your birth plan, considering an unconventional method might seem like more than you can handle.But “Many modern birthing choices take the power away from the woman and give it to the medical professionals,” says Barbara Harper, R.N., founder and director of Waterbirth International. …

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Should you worry about delivering in the car?

Rush Hour Should you worry about delivering in the car? It happened to these couples.Because labor rarely happens as you imagine, doctors recommend having a flexible birth plan.  But not making it to the hospital?  Well, even though it’s extremely rare, pregnant women have faced the daunting task of having their baby on the way there.Take Christina Liceaga, of New York City, who was intent on laboring at home, knowing the hospital was a short distance from her apartment. Because …

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What really happens during a C-Section

Diary Of A C-Section  A moment-by-moment account of one woman’s life-changing surgeryBent over an exercise ball in front of 20 of my peers, I tried to relax as my husband gently massaged my lower back.  No, I wasn’t in labor.  I was in class preparing to give birth.  Every Thursday evening for four weeks, my husband, Greg, my bump, and I dutifully trekked to class.  At the end of the program, I came out feeling ready.But there was one tiny problem.  My baby was …

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Prepping a hospital bag for new dad

Your birth partner plays an important role in the delivery of your baby. To help keep nerves calm and focus high—as well as let him know his presence means a lot—prepare a hospital bag full of goodies for him. Gift wrap it and present it two or three weeks before your deliver. Here’s what to include, from Queens, NY, baby coordinator Roselle Andrea:Contact list that includes numbers for your and your partner’s parents, best friends, and the person who’s watching your older …

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Good reasons to consider a VBAC

How About a Do-over?I could barely sleep during the last weeks of my second pregnancy. But this time, I had something new to worry about as I lay awake—shaking up my two-year-old son’s little world with a needy sibling. But my first child was, ultimately, why I decided to attempt a vaginal birth after Cesarean, or VBAC. I knew the physical limitations of recovering from a second C-section would exclude me even more from his daily life.My endeavor was a success—and I’m …

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Buddy Up for baby delivery day

You know exactly what you want to pack in your birthing bag, but do you know who you want carrying it into L&D for you? These days, many moms are taking doulas and midwives into labor and delivery rooms. They’re also bring their mothers, sisters, best friends, and even their own fathers with them. And this isn’t something new. Ancient Malaysians and Indonesians gathered all the mothers in the family or community around a woman in labor, while Navajos would often have members of the …

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Scary trend: Going without medical help during birth

"Dangerous." That's the assessment the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists gave the practice of unassisted childbirth. Yet, despite this warning, 7,000 U.S. women turn qualified medical help away each year and go solo during labor. Sadly, the results are as you'd expect, with more complications during birth and higher mortality rates for both mom and baby. So, why are women turning away from modern medicine. Let's get down to the bottom of it. What it's all about Unassisted …

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