Moms make all sorts of sacrifices when they’re pregnant to protect their babies. Many stop smoking. We all stop drinking! We limit caffeine and get headaches. We avoid medications and toxic fumes. But when it comes to giving birth, we still think it’s okay to be a little selfish.
A few points:
- All drugs reach the baby. Don’t kid yourself—if drinking during pregnancy is bad, why isn’t painkillers via an IV?
- Babies born to moms who use painkilling drugs are more likely to experience health problems including jaundice, sucking/breastfeeding difficulties, breathing difficulties, and fever.
- Babies are more likely to need painful or needless medical intervention (such as spinal tap for fever).
- Moms who birth naturally recover faster, have less postpartum depression, and are much less likely to have C-sections and experience the health risks that go along with them.
- Drugs in labor contribute to the “slippery slope” of intervention that begins with inducement with Pitocin (which causes unnatural contractions, potential for fetal distress, drop in maternal heart rate, etc.), which brings about a need for painkilling medication, which brings on other problems, and ends with a C-section created by the interventions themselves.
Natural childbirth isn’t about you ... it’s about your baby. It’s not about being a “strong” woman or a “brave” or “empowered” one. It’s about making another choice that’s in the best interest of the helpless infant growing inside you.