Childbirth and birth in the hospital
The journey of a future mother from the moment she enters the hospital to the moment she goes out with her baby.
Generally the wards tend to hospitalize the woman only if the labor has begun (presence of regular and painful contractions and at least three centimeters of dilation.
There is, especially if you are expecting the first baby, a phase called "prodromal" which lasts a few hours and is characterized by irregular contractions and pains similar to menstrual ones.
It is an advantage for you to stay at home in this phase, trying to rest, take a relaxing bath and try not to pay much attention to these first signs, but spend these hours in the company of someone in a peaceful and pleasant way. Early admission to the clinic often causes stress.
Upon check-in, the woman immediately enters the labor room and then, when she accompanies her, she carries out the procedures at the counter. It is important to bring with you:
- Health card
- Clinical examinations
- The pregnancy chart
- The delivery bag
During labor and delivery, the presence of the baby's father or a person chosen by the woman is normally allowed but in the case of a twin bed labor room, they can ask the attendant to stay out.
Physiological labor is usually assisted by the midwife, who frequently checks the fetal heartbeat. During labor, frequent vaginal visits can be troublesome for the woman and there are other parameters to assess maternal and fetal well-being and the progression of labor.
The routine practice of amniorexis (artificial rupture of the membranes that causes the leakage of amniotic fluid) is discussed: on the one hand it can decrease the duration of labor, on the other it intensifies the pain of contractions and reduces the possibility of movement of the woman.
During labor, the consumption of sugars is very high and you can feel tired and weak: it is therefore important to drink hot drinks with sugar or honey.
Today, to relieve the pain of childbirth, more value is given to natural techniques such as breathing control, different positions, concentration and massage. Many women learn these techniques in childbirth preparation courses.
This phase begins when the woman, with the uterine mouth fully dilated, feels the "spontaneous push" the first thrusts.
This is a very sensitive time when you need to be able to focus and find reassurance. Every change of situation is tiring, it will be necessary to find a comfortable and at the same time effective position.
At this point you will generally move to the delivery room, your partner will still be next to you. His presence can be a point of reference for your tranquility together with that of the Midwife who, with advice and encouragement, will be even closer to you. </ P>
Almost all births take place in the traditional cot in the delivery room and the staff does not propose alternative positions on their own initiative.
Episiotomy is a small surgical incision that artificially widens the vaginal opening; if necessary, it is practiced before the child begins to go out and generally, with local anesthesia.
At the moment of birth the Neonatologist or the Pediatrician is present, the newborn baby is given to the mother, wrapped in a cloth. He waits a few seconds to cut the umbilical cord and the woman can attach the baby to the breast immediately if she wishes. Subsequently, the newborn is examined by the pediatrician, placed in the thermal cot and transferred to the nursery.
Here the baby is examined more carefully and subjected to routine prophylaxis therapies and dressed in his own clothes that you put in the bag for the hospital.
Meanwhile, the woman, still on the birth table, expels the placenta; the suture of the eventual episiotomy is then performed. Transferred to the postpartum room or labor room, the woman spends the first hours after delivery under observation.
It is well known that the first hours after birth are essential for the baby-mom-dad meeting, for establishing the first bond. These are very delicate moments: you need a warm, welcoming, quiet environment that respects your privacy.
For women, the days following the birth are characterized by intense emotions. On the one hand joy for the birth of the baby, desire to see and touch him, on the other concern for her well-being, tension from breastfeeding, physical fatigue, pain for any stitches. </ P>
After the labor of childbirth you may need to be encouraged, helped, supported in Mom's new task.
The central point of this new phase is, for those who want it, breastfeeding which in turn requires energy, availability and patience.
The colostrum of the first two days and the mother's milk are the best food for the newborn from all points of view. A good start is essential for successful breastfeeding:
- the desire to breastfeed first,
- sucking in the first few hours after birth,
- breastfeeding at the baby's request at their own pace,
- avoid the administration of any other substance (infant formula or gluten solution)
How do you organize this in the hospital? One answer can be "Rooming In", ie not separating the mother and the baby during the postnatal period. The close proximity of mother and baby facilitates the realization of these conditions and promotes their knowledge and understanding.
During the hospital stay (usually three days) the new mother attends the diaper change and the dressing of the cord. Upon returning to the nursery, if the newborn has not eaten enough (double weighing control), he is eventually given some glucose solution.
The fact that the baby does not take breast milk in the desired quantity depends on many factors:
- the baby may not be hungry at that moment and may even sleep
- the mother can feel anxious knowing that she has little time available to feed the baby and this makes it difficult for the reflex of the release of milk, </ li>
- the milky way may not have arrived yet,
- and so on ...
Don't be alarmed because at home it will be much easier to find a rhythm that meets your needs and your baby's.
Normally, on the third day, counting zero on the day of birth and on the fifth week if the caesarean section has been performed, discharge takes place and indications are given for subsequent checks.
In the days following the birth, the woman needs material help, but above all emotional support and a suitable environment that gives her the necessary time to learn how to care for and feed the newborn.
"Feeling like a mother" is a slow and complex but natural process, made up of small steps.
Every woman needs to be encouraged, supported and helped in the first few weeks. Changing your habits, waking up at night, taking care of the baby trying to understand her needs, all this takes a lot of energy. </ P>
Emotional support is therefore essential, even with specific "technical" and affective support that must be given and created within the family. It might be a good opportunity for the dad to have a vacation period that coincides with the first weeks of the new family's life at home.
Our best wishes.