The Four Stages Of Childbirth

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Every woman experiences labor and birth differently, but the act is unique and life-changing. After a long process of holding a baby inside the womb, moving into labor can be an overwhelming event filled with many different emotions. But with the encouragement of friends and loved ones the process can be alleviated. All the contractions and movements of the body influence the yielding for the path of the baby through the birth canal. In this paper the four stages of labor and birth are covered, which all lead up to the delivery of the baby. The signs of approaching labor can be hard to identify in some women. The Braxton-Hicks contractions occur throughout pregnancy and this is the tightening of the uterus that some mistaken as the start …show more content…
This stage is the longest and lasts about twelve to nineteen hours. Women in some cases can not distinguish the difference between pre-labor and the start of the first stage. In early labor or latent phase, the contractions begin to be more regular and the cervix begins to dilate. Contractions occur far apart and usually can be ignored, since the contractions feel like menstrual cramps and still are bearable. But as the phase continues the contractions become longer, painful, and more constant. “ Some women say that this phase of labor is the hardest psychologically”(Obos Pregnancy & Birth Contributors 2011). Since it may be the hardest, it is suggested to have loved ones during the process as support and encouragement. For women who it is their first baby, this can take longer and be more overwhelming. So in this situation they should save their energy for the active phase by resting and staying hydrated. Although some women decide to continue their daily tasks, labor differs in every case. The early labor phase ends when the cervix is about four to five centimeters dilated (The Stages of Labor …show more content…
This period is just observation to avoid postpartum hemorrhage, or hypertension for the mother ( Management of the second stage of labor 2012). The mother can now hold the baby after so long and it creates excitement. Many feelings can be experienced but mainly euphoria and relief to be done with giving birth. At this time, the relationship of breastfeeding can begin and be established with the newborn. By just placing the baby onto the chest, they can begin to instinctively suck or take time to begin nursing (Our Bodies, Ourselves pg. 424). All that should matter is that the baby and mother are now together and they can be skin to skin. Loved ones and the mother can rejoice and recover of the long path it took to

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