Giving birth to a child can be the most unnerving moment for a woman. The thought of carrying a child within the womb, the labour, the confusion between a normal delivery or a C-section, can cause a lot of anxiety. And if and when women look for answers to these queries, they come across different experiences. Some of this information can also make women fall prey to some myths about vaginal birth. But don’t worry, because we are here to ensure that you are informed correctly about the process.
Health Shots got in touch with Dr Nagaveni R, Consultant – Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Motherhood Hospitals, HRBR Layout, Bengaluru to debunk some common myths about vaginal birth.
Myths about vaginal birth
Dr Nagaveni says, “Pregnancy itself can be an intimidating experience however misconceptions about pregnancy in the minds of expectant mothers can make the pregnancy process difficult. When it comes to the mode of delivering a baby, mothers can opt either for a vaginal birth or C-section. However, there are several misconceptions about vaginal birth. So, before planning a pregnancy, it is advised to get correct information from reliable sources to avoid assumptions.”
Here are 8 common vaginal birth myths that you should not believe:
Myth 1: Vaginal birth is more painful than C-section
A common misconception among people is that a C-section is less painful. Vaginal birth is accompanied by immediate pain however the recovery and discomfort post-surgery from a Cesarean section is longer and more challenging when compared to vaginal delivery.
Myth 2: C-section is more convenient than a vaginal birth
C-ection is a surgical procedure where the baby is delivered through incisions in the abdomen and uterus. When it comes to convenience, every method has its own set of risks which may differ from case to case. On the contrary, it is advised for women to undergo vaginal birth unless there are certain pregnancy complications.
Myth 3: Labour pain is intolerable during vaginal birth
Labour pain during pregnancy is intense and painful for women. However, certain breathing techniques and exercises can help alleviate the pain to achieve a fulfilling birth experience.
Myth 4: A vaginal delivery may lead to sexual dysfunction
A common myth surrounding vaginal deliveries is that a vaginal delivery may lead to sexual dysfunction or low sexual drive among women. Studies have indicated that childbirth is not a major contributor to sexual dysfunction in women.
Myth 5: A vaginal delivery may result in prolapse
A uterine prolapse is a condition where the uterus descends from its normal position and protrudes out of the vagina. However, choosing a Caesarean section over vaginal delivery to avoid prolapse isn’t a wise decision.
Myth 6: A cord around the baby’s neck requires a Caesarean section.
The cord around a baby’s neck does not pose a threat because it is long enough for the baby to move through the birth canal causing no problems during vaginal birth.
Myth 7: One cannot have a vaginal birth if one has undergone a C-section delivery earlier
This is the most common misconception and many women can opt for vaginal delivery after a previous c-section. Of course, this will depend on how the previous pregnancy was and also there should be a gap of at least 2 years between both pregnancies.
Myth 8: Vaginal deliveries are more dangerous for babies
Another myth with regard to vaginal delivery is the dangers of using forceps and vacuum during the vaginal delivery process. If handled by a professional, using these tools is safe for both the mother and the baby.
During the delivery process, the doctor closely monitors the movement of the growing baby and the mother’s vitals for a smooth experience. It is important for a mother to maintain her physical, emotional, and mental health by refraining from myths and misconceptions about childbirth.