Giving Birth at a Hospital Just Got Scarier Than Ever

newborn baby

Every mom, of course, wants a happy, healthy childbirth ... only a new report suggests that hospitals are majorly getting in the way of that. That's according to a report called the "Hormonal Physiology of Childbearing" by the Childbirth Connection, which pioneers strategies for safer maternity care as part of the National Partnership for Women & Families. The main thrust? Stop interfering so much with a mom's natural abilities to give birth!


Granted, medical interventions like C-sections are often necessary and can be life-saving. But they're also overused, according to this report. And this can interfere with a mom's and baby's own natural hormonal processes and put them both at risk for a whole host of other problems.

For instance: epidurals. Sure they reduce the pain of labor. But they also dampen a mother's levels of oxytocin, leading to a slower, longer labor. Meanwhile, C-sections cause babies to miss out on a late-labor surge of epinephrine, a hormone which keeps baby alert and encourages him to start breathing on his own. Inducing labor also lowers a mom's usual levels of prolactin, which triggers milk production. No matter what the medical intervention, this report makes clear that these "fixes" can just lead to more struggles down the road.

More from The Stir: Incredible Images of Babies Being Born Give Us a Look at the Miracle of Birth

The report urges hospitals -- and moms -- to rigorously review the benefits of proposed interventions before moving forward. Take a look at what you need to do to have a healthy birth:

Pathway to a Healthy Birth

Do you think medical interventions interfere with a healthy childbirth?


Images via Halfpoint/shutterstock; Childbirth Connection

Read More >