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Having a Home Birth after Caesarean Section

Having a Home Birth after Caesarean Section

There should be no automatic repeat Caesarean sections. In every case the need for this type of delivery should be assessed individually and in relation to the particular baby. The chances of having a vaginal birth following a Caesarean birth are good, although it will usually be described as a ‘trial’ of labor.

Such a birth is normally expected to take place in a consultant unit with facilities available for an emergency Caesarean section if necessary; this is because of the fear that your uterine scar may not stand up to the pressure of labor, and separate or rupture as a consequence. This happens only rarely — once in every 500 cases where the incision is of the lower-segment ‘bikini line’ kind. It is more common, 1-3 per cent, with classical up-and-down scar...

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Assistance with Conception What You Should Know

Assistance with Conception What You Should Know

If you have been trying to conceive for six months without success, it may be appropriate to visit your doctor for help in finding out what’s preventing conception. The factors that decrease fertility fall into three main groups: First, problems associated with ovulation\ you must produce eggs (ova) in order to conceive. Second, what is referred to as male factor infertility or subfertility the man’s sperm count and the normalcy of the sperm produced and their ability to get from where they are produced (in the testes) to where they will fertilize the egg (in one of the woman’s Fallopian tubes). In an older man erectile dysfunction may also be a consideration...

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Dealing with Problems in Labor

Dealing with Problems in Labor

Problems in labor are the big bogey with which women are often threatened when they ask to have their babies at home. Statistically less likely to occur than in hospital, they are none the less a possibility. Although women choosing a home birth may be justifiably more confident about things going smoothly than their medical advisors are, they must, in order to make an informed choice, contemplate the possibility of things going wrong.

You need to think about what might happen, what contingency plans should be made for such an event, what treatment could be given to either you or the baby while still at home and when it would be advisable or necessary to transfer to hospital. You should also be aware of ways of preventing a problem arising if possible, or of helping yourself once it has.

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Preventing Placental Insufficiency during Pregnancy

Preventing Placental Insufficiency during Pregnancy

If you are worried because you haven’t felt the baby move for several hours, try taking three very deep breaths. The extra boost of oxygen often starts the baby moving. Failing this, try resting, relaxing as much as possible and lying on your left side. In this way the baby gets the best supply of blood to the placenta, and it will nearly always stimulate movement. Sometimes drinking a glass of very cold water can make the baby move. Get help if you are worried, although babies do often have periods of not moving for quite a long time, often at the 20-24 weeks stage.

If there is any question of the baby growing inadequately you should rest on your left for as long as possible each day...

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The Benefits of Ultrasound

The Benefits of Ultrasound

Ultrasonagraphy provides a picture of a fetus by means of bouncing high-frequency sound waves off the baby. It is useful for dating the pregnancy, checking for major abnormalities, to see if there is more than one baby, locating the placenta and assessing the cause in cases of bleeding in pregnancy. It is routine in many hospitals at around 16 weeks of pregnancy, and you may be under pressure to accept a scan even if you are having your baby at home.

The actual procedure involves lying on your back on a narrow trolley while a blunt probe is scanned across your abdomen, which is lubricated with conductive gel. A sometimes blurred picture is built up on a nearby screen. It is possible to freeze the picture so that specific measurements of the baby can be made to assess the gestational age.

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How to Choose a Doula for Home Birth

How to Choose a Doula for Home Birth

The use of independent midwives and professional lay birth supporters, known as doulas, is growing. This may be because National Health Service support for home birth, although technically available, is currently uncertain. Women who want to be sure of having someone that they know with them at the birth, who believes in and has experience of home birth and who knows how to help a laboring women, may want to employ a professional birth attendant.

A doula cannot deliver a baby except in an emergency. An independent midwife is able to manage your antenatal care, help you have the baby and look after both of you postnatally. She may work on her own or with one or two other midwives...

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