So, You Want a Fast Labor? 5 Tips from a Natural Childbirth Instructor.

What is your dream birth?

This is the question I ask moms when I first sit down with them for their first childbirth class.

I hear many different answers, but the most common response is always, “I want a fast birth.” I chuckle because if you know anything about childbirth, it is often everything but fast. Childbirth, as it’s meant to be, requires patience, persistence, and preparation.

Yes, we have many medical advancements available to us that can make a labor faster, but I would argue their safety for mom and baby. Labor, at least the first time around, just isn’t usually a fast process. Now, my follow-up question to this frequent response is often, “what is your definition of fast?” Most moms think a fast labor is a just few hours. But, did you know that the average labor for a first time mom is 15-17 hours?

Therefore, a fast labor in my books is anything less than 15 hours. That is not usually the definition many new moms hold. 15 hours is a long time, but if we consider all that is taking place and must take place physiologically in mom and baby, we can appreciate the time it takes to unfold the beautiful process as it is meant to be. I like to think of birth as a dance between mom and baby. The most romantic and peaceful dances linger for a while.

With that said, if you are an expecting mom hoping for a fast birth, don’t be discouraged. There are actually quite a few important things you can do to encourage your body to move in the right direction and hopefully lead to a faster birth.

Here are my top 5 suggestions:

  1. Commit yourself to the Care of a Prenatal Chiropractor: Prenatal chiropractic care has proven to lessen the length of birth by up to 25%. Frequent care leading up to birth ensures that mom’s pelvis is ready to receive her baby which also leads to her baby being in the best possible position for birth. This makes mom and baby’s efforts more effective and efficient.
  2. Fuel Up and Pump it Up: Prepping for labor throughout pregnancy with adequate nutrition and exercise will make a world of difference! Labor is a long day of exercise. Whether the labor is 5 hours or 25 hours, this still makes for a long day at the gym. But, those moms who have prepped for this long day of exercise will have more energy, endurance, and strength for labor. Her energy levels stay up, and she is able to perform at her best. Not only can this reduce the amount of time a mom is in labor, but it can also reduce the amount of pain she experiences as well as the safety of the birth.
  3. Do NOT Lie on Your Back. EVER: If you remember nothing else, remember this. Lying on your back during labor at any point is the WORST thing a mom can do for her labor. Being on your back automatically increases the pain and the duration of the labor. A mom on her back is asking her uterine muscle to work against gravity making it harder to get her baby in the right position and move down. JUST SAY NO!
  4. Take a Childbirth Class: Ignorance is not bliss in the case of having a baby. Every mom AND dad needs to know what to expect and how to work with mom’s body and not against it. Depending on the kind of birth you desire will depend on where I suggest you take a class. If you desire an epidural, go for a hospital class. If you want to go all natural, you need a class outside of the hospital that is much more thorough. A hospital class does not train couples to have natural births. This would be a conflict of interest. How would they make money if every mom declined all they have to offer? I know this sounds mean, but it’s just the truth of consumerism. If you want a natural childbirth, you need to be educated by someone who doesn’t make a buck by you failing to get one. Of course, I am biased, but I highly suggest the Bradley Method for first time parents (bradleybirth.com), because it is extremely thorough. I took it, I teach it, and I love it! (See all my suggested reading list below.)
  5. Chill Out and Get Up: Lastly, if you want a fast birth, don’t stress and don’t stay in the bed the entire time. Birth is a natural process. It is meant to be beautiful. Surround yourself with people who believe in you and your baby, do all you can do to reduce stress, and get to walking. Walk, change positions, and move around until you just can do it any more. Don’t exhaust yourself of course, but moms in labor are not sick. They do not need to be in a bed the entire time. Get up, get moving, and let gravity do it’s job!

Childbirth is the most beautiful process. I assure you, the One who created the process and the baby knows how to get the baby out. More than anything else, have confidence in your body and what it was created to do! It truly is a miracle.

Happy safe and fast birthing!

Cathy

P.S. I am always available to answer questions if you have them! Comment below or contact me! If you’d like to check out my childbirth instruction page, you can go to birthtoblessing.com. If you are local to Northern Virginia, I have a childbirth class beginning THIS Sunday (July 15th). To register go to: birthtoblessing.com.

Looking for a online option? I’ve got the perfect online option for you. The Blessed Birth Course is designed for Christian couples. Check it out!

Suggested Reading: (For more suggestions go to birthtoblessing.com)

  1. Husband Coached Childbirth by Dr. Bradley
  2. Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May
  3. Supernatural Childbirth by Jackie Mize
  4. Gentle Birth Choices by Barbara Harper
  5. The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin

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