Water birth is a method of child birth which is gaining popularity and acceptance worldwide. In this process a mother gives birth to a child in a pool or tub full of warm water. Water birth is also known as underwater delivery.Water birth is found to have many advantages. It is a very safe process and causes less pain during the delivery. Hydrostatic pressure of water relaxes the mother’s body. This causes the release of natural pain killers into the mother’s blood stream, bringing the need of artificial pain killers is brought to a minimum.
Water birth facilitates mobility of the mother and enables her to assume any position which is comfortable for labor, thus giving her a feeling of more control over the process. The water which is a cooling agent helps the mother to relax physically and mentally. It is seen to reduce the labor time and also makes the delivery a smooth process.
Blood flow to the uterine muscles is seen to increase reducing the labor pain. The abdominal pressure is also reduced and relaxation is provided to the pelvic floor muscles.
Water birth is found advantageous for the baby too. The baby will find it more comfortable to shift from one fluid medium which prevails inside the mother’s womb, to another fluid medium which is the tub of water. This helps the child in adapting to the environment better.
When a baby comes from a water to water medium, without supplying oxygen the lungs remain collapsed and so no water can enter the lungs. Thus the chances of baby’s death due to asphyxiation or drowning can be completely ruled out.
There are some things to be taken care of in water birth. The water used should be pure and clean and should match the mother’s body temperature. Even though people might think of undergoing a water birth at home, it is recommended to go through the process under proper medical supervision.
Ladies suffering from infectious diseases are not recommended to have water birth as there is a chance of infection being passed on from the mother to the baby. Water birth is also not advised for ladies having high risk pregnancies.
Water birth is clearly a safe and painless way to bring a baby to this world. Under proper medical guidance one can surely enjoy all the advantages of a water birth.