Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A Less Stressful Delivery Day

Preparing for baby's arrival has been an ongoing project the past few weeks - most of which I was trying to put off until I have spring break but keep getting anxious. I'm worried I won't have enough time to get EVERYTHING done with classes and clinical before May. I recently met guest blogger Alan Cassidy online and was approached about hosting a guest post. Alan is a maternity, childbirth, infant and children's health advocate who researches and writes to improve the well-being of families. His post came at the perfect time for me as I'm getting little items accomplished on my list and trying not to become overwhelmed. Alan's post discusses some great ways to removing the stress of delivery day!
Removing the Stress of Delivery Day

Even with nine months to prepare, the day of delivery can still manage to catch moms off guard. Whether a first time mom or a veteran, the list of baby preparations can be long enough that only the most organized and diligent mom-to-be could hope to get through it. Rather than expending a ton of effort trying to prepare for every possible event, it’s a better idea to focus on those tasks that will provide a confident and calm attitude. Consider these tips commonly used by expectant mothers.

Keeping a Journal

Writing is a great way to organize thoughts, manifest hopes and release fears of the unknown. It’s also a great way to prepare for talks with health providers and loved ones about personal preferences for labor and delivery. Some mothers keep more than one journal, using one to keep track of things that need to be done and another to help process emotions. The only rule to using a journal in preparation for childbirth is that there are no rules.

 Know What to Expect

There is always the possibility that plans will need to be changed at the last moment, and even the baby deciding to come into the world earlier than planned can change a scheduled induction. Still, this is no reason to leave it all to fate. Everyone has preferences, and reading about options is a great way to get ideas and learn about the latest research on best childbirth practices. Mothers that decide on a home birth or want specific people present during the procedure should definitely include the appropriate people in these decisions well in advance.

Fortunately, there is ample time to make preferences known. Meetings with the obstetrician or midwife should prepared for by making a list of questions and talking points in advance. It is also a good idea to keep notes, though more providers are making the effort to provide their clients with printed materials. Childbirth classes offer a great opportunity to learn about optional procedures. Cord blood banking is one such option that collects the cord blood from the umbilical cord and saves if for the family as a potential medical resource for future illnesses.

Getting Physically Fit

While it is a good idea to follow a regular aerobic exercise program throughout pregnancy, there are some special exercises that will help with labor and birth. Classes can be found through childbirth clinics or area hospitals to teach Lamaze breathing, which can help maintain stamina and increase awareness of the body. Yoga for pregnancy and exercise targeting the urogenital diaphragm can strengthen the pelvic muscles. Learning about these options will help ensure a smooth delivery.

This article was written by Alan Cassidy, an active writer within the blogging community covering maternity and childbirth, and always advocating for infant and children’s health. Connect with him on Twitter @ACassidy22

Wishing you a pot o' gold, and all the joy your heart can hold. Thanks for reading!