Labour and Childbirth
During labour, most medical practitioners make the pregnant women lie flat on the hospital bed or lying down with their legs raised during labour and child birth. However, these aren’t the only labour positions for a comfortable child birth. If you attend prenatal classes, you get exposure to various labour and child birth positions which are found to be useful and help to reduce labour pain.
The below positions are also preferred by doctors worldwide to ease labour pain and experience a smooth delivery without complications.
Squatting is one of the successful labour positions which will avoid most of the labour complications. This position is widely used in the second stage of labour which makes it faster. Squatting realigns the pelvis to increase the cervix opening by up to 15% and uses the force of gravity to help the baby move to the birth canal easily.
Hands and knees position
This is the position where the mother will be on all fours, just like playing horse. This will help to relieve the pressure on the back. This will help to turn a posterior baby and it uses the force of gravity for the baby’s movement. You can also use a birthing ball for support.
Knees and Chest Position
This is a variation of the above position with leaning forward the hands and raising hips above the shoulder. This uses gravity to allow the baby rotate out of posterior position and slide through the pelvis. It relieves backache and contractions are less painful.
This is an upright supported squat position allowing the assistance of a labour partner to support the mother by holding her from the back. This position takes the advantage of gravity and helps in easy child birth. It realigns the pelvis to increase the cervix opening and also makes contractions less painless and more productive.
Side lying position
Side lying position requires you to rest on one side of the bed, similar to a sleeping position. It helps to get oxygen for the baby and effective for contractions. It provides good access to the perineum and posses lower chance of tearing or the need of episiotomy.
Slow walking can help t ease the pain. You can take the support of your spouse or a labour partner while walking. It helps to speed up the labour and reduces backache, contraction pain etc. It uses gravity and the baby will be well aligned in your pelvis. You can use a birthing ball for all these movements to provide support and minimize pressure. During second and third trimester, you can practice these positions at home or in antenatal class; this way you can be prepared for your big day. You can also consult your gynecologist and discuss about the various positions well ahead of labour.