(Closed) Helpful natural childbirth books?

posted 5 years ago in Pregnancy
Post # 2
Member
2208 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I never used it but my sister LOVED The Bradley Method for pain management during birth. She went totally drug and intervention free. She labored at home almost the whole time, arrived at the hospital and 20 mins later my niece was born! She said she wouldn’t do it any other way next time!

Post # 4
Member
1092 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

I really liked the Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy. It covers pregnancy as a whole but has a few chapters on labor and birthing. It is very straightforward with very little to no villifcation of medical interventions. It might not be as in depth on coping techniques as you are looking for though.

I know our hospital offers some additional classes for coping mechanisms during labor. Have you checked whether your hospital or other area hospitals/birth centers offer something like this? 

Post # 5
Member
3088 posts
Sugar bee

Serious question:

What can these books possibly tell you? I have two kids – one with an epi and one all natural. The only possible thing you can do to manage pain while going through child birth is to try to breathe through it. Obviously, I am coming from a place of ignorance since there are entire books devoted to this stuff.lol  Again, just curious.

Post # 6
Member
492 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

I recommend researching hypnobirthing.  I used that method for my first son and went 30 hours with no pain meds.  He was over 10lbs and basically got stuck so I ended up with a c-section but I loved the hypnobirthing techniques.  I think it worked wonderfully.

Post # 7
Member
1496 posts
Bumble bee

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Butterfly6:  Honestly, I can relate to OP – reading does help. At the very very least, it eases the mind up until the moment of labour. When you have nothing to relate to, reading about it is as close as we can get. You are right though, because giving birth is definitely something that you just need to experience to truly understand and know what to expect – but to go in blindly with no preparation can be pretty scary!

I enjoy reading detailed birth stories about natural birth, because I feel like it does prepare me for it. I have read birth stories about mothers who recall things they read in a book about coping with the pain, which actually helped them get through some contractions so I’m sure there are some helpful books out there. 

But even if everything those books say go out the window when we’re actually in labour, I still think it’s worth it to help prepare during the time leading up to it.

Anyway, OP i don’t have any advice because I have just been reading birth stories. I’m holding off on the actual books until I do get pregnant. But I’m posting to follow for the future!

Post # 8
Member
1423 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

The Birth Partner by Simkin has some good info on pain coping techniques for ordinary labor (her basic strategy is relaxation, rhythm, ritual).  This was the basic text of the childbirthing classes I took with my doula, and the way she approaches labor.

I figure the one thing I can really work on improving in advance is the “relax” portion (plus this will be useful for being a mother, even if I end up having a complicated birth!).  So, I’ve been doing a lot of yoga.  I also have a book I’m working through called Mindful Birthing, which isn’t too bad (although the writing style irks me a bit).  The focus there is using meditation skills to help you cope with labor pain and to deal with any complications that may arise.  

I think it’s well worth doing a bit of advance preparation.  Even if you end up with an epidural, having a pain management strategy can be really nice for the early stages of labor.  Plus, yoga and mindfulness are great ways to help reduce stress and anxiety.

Post # 9
Member
5089 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

I haven’t read them myself but I’ve heard nothing but good things about Ina May Gaskin’s books on birth.

Post # 10
Member
1831 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I’m also interested. I work in medicine, so I’m pretty well versed on options and interventions…more looking for something for DH to read so he has some idea of how to be (feel) helpful.

Post # 11
Member
1423 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2009

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GrannyPantiesRock:  The Birth Partner is your book, then.  The purpose of it is to help those who will be helping laboring women (but it’s good to read if you are about to be a laboring woman yourself!).  

Post # 12
Member
3003 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

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JenGirl:  Another vote for hypnobirthing here! I found the class a little hokey but they gave us some CDs to listen to that were pretty helpful. I don’t know the name of them but I’m sure you could find some online. Your husband could listen to them with you. The techniques came very naturally to me and I spent a lot of early labor and transition purposefully relaxing as the contraction started, listening to music or my husband’s voice, and focusing on the feel of a cool washcloth on my forehead. Pretty simple, but it worked. My husband was really glad we took classes as he felt much more prepared as my labor coach- he did a great job, especially with squeezing my hips, which helped a lot towards the end. Of course you never know if complication will arise, but go into it with the attitude that I CAN DO IT. We had ‘positive affirmations’ hung around our house for the month before my son was born and I did say some of them during contractions, mostly “I can DO it” (I know, very profund). Congrats to you and best of luck! 

PS I always enjoy your voice of reason on other threads 🙂

Post # 13
Member
5089 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

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acsweetpea:  
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MrsAKSkier:  

DH and I are in hypnobirthing classes now. I’m trying to not let my annoyance at the ideology and non-scientific parts get in the way of working on the relaxation techniques, which I know are proven to be really helpful during labor. But OMG, I can’t STAND some of the crap they tell you in the book/videos, like babies remembering their births, fetuses being “conscious” from the moment of conception (oh really? Which of the four cells of the blastocyst is “consciousness” located in?), that “primitive” women didn’t experience pain in childbirth the way we modern, Western women do, etc. I wish so much that the useful parts could be divorced from the bonkers ideology they’re wrapped in.

Post # 14
Member
492 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2016

 

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mightywombat:  Oh wow…mine didn’t go like that at all and that was not in my books!!  It was my husband at the time (this was back in 2006) and one other couple.  The woman we had doing our class was great.  It was strictly about techniques and relaxation.  We didn’t get into any of that other stuff or I would have been irritated lol. 

Post # 15
Member
3003 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

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mightywombat:  Oh dear, that would make me roll my eyes so hard! Our class wasn’t like that at all, good thing, I never would’ve gotten my husband there haha! Yeah, I would ignore the annoying parts and focus on the techniques! Although I did picture my own birth being very relaxed and parts of it were but there were still plenty of “oh, fuck”s and puking and popped blood vessels in my eye during pushing….I definitely didn’t “breathe” my baby out while doing yoga and humming….

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