As a woman becomes pregnant and the pregnancy progresses, questions about childbirth also begin to come to mind. In Finland, birth control is the most common option and sectioning is not normally considered except in special cases, but in many countries women choose the method of childbirth themselves, and sectioning may be an even more popular method.
Undercarriage is a natural process. However, some women want to avoid it because of fear of pain or because they fear it will cause permanent damage to their vagina. However, many other things affect the decision.
Section vs. lower birth
Babies are born every day, every moment, both in the ward and in the womb. Sometimes the mother chooses the section herself, while sometimes it is forced to do if the birth does not proceed according to plan.
The decision to make a section can therefore be planned or made at the last minute to ensure the safety and well-being of the baby and mother.
Differences between section and delivery
The biggest difference between natural delivery and sectioning is that the latter is a surgical procedure that takes 20-30 minutes. If planned in advance, the section should be done 39 weeks after fertilization, unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
“Which is more painless: a section or a natural birth?”
This is a common question among first-time mothers. In the section, there is no vaginal enlargement, unlike with vaginal delivery. Thus, such pain does not occur in the planned section.
Usually, this procedure uses an epidural, an anesthetic that prevents you from feeling and moving your lower body. It affects the lower limbs about 10 cm above the navel. However, the expectant mother remains awake at the same time. The effect lasts for 1-1.5 hours. Thereafter, for 24 to 48 hours, the pain is controlled with intravenous analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs.
Although the pain is more controlled during the section, the woman may experience pain after her recovery.
Baby’s immune system
Before birth, babies are virtually sterile – that is, free of the world’s viruses and bacteria. However, some bacteria are essential for the proper functioning of the organs. For this reason, when a child is born lower, he receives healthy bacteria from his mother.
If, on the other hand, a section is made, the baby will not receive the mother’s microbiota. Usually he just sucks it from the environment in which he is born, as well as from the people around him and eventually also from his mother. Unfortunately, however, most of these foreign bacteria are unknown to the baby’s immune system.
The bacterial growth of the intestine of children born in the uterus is different from the bacterial growth of children born in caesarean section. The latter have fewer cells associated with immune factors. It therefore increases the risk of suffering from various diseases such as type 1 diabetes, Crohn’s disease or severe allergies.
Be it childbirth either, after that a woman’s body requires a lot of rest to heal. Housework is not allowed. If a mother has other children, she should be careful not to consume herself too much to meet the needs and energy levels of the children.
The postpartum period is often the most difficult time for the mother and her family. This stage is much more complicated and tougher for women who have given birth by section.
In both cases, the new mother should be given enough rest and avoid lifting heavy objects.
However, when a woman has given birth lower, the pain is momentary and recovery is faster. After the section, in turn, it takes several days and even weeks to heal. The section performs surgical procedures and for that reason the woman gets two scars: both an external scar on the skin of the epidermis and an internal uterus. They take a long time to heal.
How to choose between a section and a birth
As we mentioned at the beginning, vaginal delivery is the most common choice in Finland, and the options may not even be discussed. Here, however, there are women who want to weigh different options. Undercarriage is often safer for the mother and baby, but there are also cases where it is necessary to do a section.
Advantages and disadvantages of the section
- First, because the epidural is placed in the abdomen, the sensation disappears from the pelvis to the legs. And so caesarean section is “painless” – in a way.
- Second, the time of birth of a child can be arranged according to what suits the parents.
- Finally, surgery takes only 3-4 hours, including preparation and recovery time.
- This is anesthetic surgery, and like any surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection as well as damage to other organs.
- The recovery period takes at least 1-2 months.
- It is difficult for new mothers to get up and walk during the first week. It requires a lot of support from family and friends.
- In addition to these anesthetic side effects, nausea, dizziness, and vomiting occur in the days after section.
Advantages and disadvantages of lower birth
- The risks of subcutaneous birth, including excessive blood loss, kidney damage, and infection, are lower than with caesarean section.
- Blood pressure remains more stable.
- Placental and infant oxygen uptake is better than during sectioning.
- The baby is born more alert because going through the birth canal stimulates his senses.
- The mother’s body releases oxytocin , which is favorable for milk production and promotes the bond between mother and baby.
- Risk of postpartum urinary incontinence.
- Subpartum delivery occurs spontaneously, unlike a section.
- Risk of vaginal rupture. It is also possible that the doctor decides to undergo an episiotomy, or perineal surgery.
Discuss options and your potential fear of childbirth at a maternity clinic. In some cases, a section is also recommended if, for example, the baby is upside down or not in the correct position to leave the womb.
Women over the age of 35 are more prone to complications during lower birth, so for them, a section may sometimes be a better option.
Women undergoing childbirth are more aware of what is happening around them, and their experience is more holistic as the baby enters the world. It is also a special experience for the father if this is involved in childbirth.
However, there are many reasons why a woman chooses a section or has to perform it. It is always important to keep in mind that every pregnant woman has different needs. Ask your maternity clinic for more information if you have something to think about so you can be happy and ready for your baby to be born.