Happy World Doula Week to all the doulas out there!
What does it look like? Check out this handy guide to understanding how your cervix will change in the late third trimester and in labor. Maybe you followed your pregnancy by reading about your baby's size being compared to fruit... and now you get to read about your cervix in relation to fruit :)
This article is definitely worth a read if you are pregnant and preparing for labor. And especially if you are interested in anatomy! According to the article, it may be particularly applicable if any of the following are present:
A long and difficult labor in which normal remedies (Rebozo Sifting, Position Changes, Spinning Babies Maneuvers) are not fully effective
Persistently malpositioned baby
Highly athletic mother (especially those who are highly athletic into their pregnancy)
History of any trauma in which the ligaments of the pelvis could have been affected (accidents, falls, etc.)
A visible Pelvic Upslip: One (usually left) iliac crest superior to the other, one leg (usually left) functionally shorter than the other.
Ever since I became a doula, I've been fascinated with the concept of fetal positioning. With my background in dance and yoga, and my interest in alignment, optimal fetal positioning is right up my alley when it comes to birth! A baby that is positioned well can make for a smoother birth. How does a baby get positioned well? Some of it relates to the mother's physical structure, and some of it is related to lifestyle. The good news is that during pregnancy, there are daily and weekly exercises that women can practice to encourage balance. What if you are about to give birth and haven't practiced any of these exercises? You can rest assured that most babies do turn in labor, if they haven't rotated into the optimum position already. And some babies just make their entrance in whatever position they want to be in, regardless of how "optimal" it may be.
Interested in learning more about Spinning Babies? This is something I cover with my clients during their prenatal sessions. In addition, you can also watch the parent class, available on DVD or as a download. Visit the site here to purchase: http://spinningbabies.com/shop/
Very interesting as it relates to birthing a human...
“Modern birthing science has placed a large burden on secreted hormones (like relaxin) to prepare the body for needed mobility.” Katy Bowman says. Yes, hormonal relaxin is useful in letting the body open up for the birth, but it’s not enough, unless we have strong muscles that can fully contract, but also fully release. But then, strong isolated muscles are not enough either. In order to have smooth births we need to have a whole-body endurance. A great way to develop endurance is to walk as much as you can. “The woman who wants to go about a birthing process naturally can follow the lead other “natural” processes women have been doing for millennia — walking 5–6 total miles per day, and squatting to bathroom multiple times daily” — she adds.
Read the full article here.