Like many aspects of pregnancy, Cesarean section (C-section) births are subject to plenty of pervasive rumors and myths. OB/GYNs and midwives encounter these every day. Common myths include that doctors are paid more to perform C-sections when compared to vaginal delivery and that having a C-section is somehow “easier” than giving birth vaginally.
Some go as far as to say that those who deliver their babies through C-section are not real mothers, which is a ridiculous and totally wrong-headed way to view becoming a mother. In truth, there are many valid reasons to deliver through C-section. Often, the surgery can have health benefits for both mother and baby.
In this blog, our providers at Holistic OB/GYN & Midwifery explain the basics of C-section and why you may need to deliver by C-section.
A C-section is when a child is delivered via an incision in the abdomen and uterus. In the United States, about one in three children are born via C-section. C-sections are major surgeries, but they’re considered relatively safe for both mother and baby. C-sections generally occur through three avenues:
- Choice for expecting mothers that want to control the exact timing of their baby’s birth or who have already given birth through a C-section and prefer it for subsequent children
- Planned in advance for safety
- During labor when obstacles arise
At Holistic OB/GYN & Midwifery, we’ll work with you throughout your whole pregnancy to determine what type of birth is right for both you and your baby.
Medical reasons for a C-section
There are many reasons that a C-section may be necessary. Below are some of the most common.
A C-section is often necessary for deliveries with three or more babies. Additionally, twins may need to be born via C-section if the leading baby is in an abnormal position.
Labor isn’t progressing
This is a common complication that is the cause of nearly one-third of C-sections. Prolonged or stalled labor can occur when a woman’s cervix isn’t opening enough despite hours of strong contractions. A labor can typically be called prolonged after 20 hours for new moms and 14 hours for women who have given birth before.
Fetal distress occurs when there is a lack of adequate amounts of oxygen delivered to the baby. This could also occur if the baby’s heartbeat changes significantly or becomes irregular. Fetal distress would be a cause for an immediate switch to C-section delivery.
Mother’s pre-existing condition
If a mother has health issues, including high blood pressure, kidney disease, heart disease, or diabetes, it may be best to avoid possible pregnancy complications and deliver via C-section. Mothers with some STDs, such as genital herpes or HIV, should also opt for a planned C-section.
Position or size of baby
If a baby is in breech position, meaning that their feet are facing down, a C-section may be a better option. Although some baby’s may be able to be turned to a head-down position, this is not always possible. Additionally, some very large babies may need a C-section delivery.
To learn more about labor, delivery, and C-sections, book an appointment online or over the phone with Holistic OB/GYN & Midwifery today.