AMANI Birth Certified Childbirth Educator & Doula, Hafsa Qureshey, explores the very relevant topic of birth consumerism:
- What does good birth consumerism mean?
Good birth consumerism is 'shopping' for the right care provider; OBGYN or birth attendant, and selecting the right place to give birth, because both these things - who you have with you at birth and your surroundings - will have a huge influence on you as birth is a major life event.
That is why educating yourself and wisely choosing your birth team and place is very very important.
A mom or couple should ask all questions that they need to know to be satisfied that the doctor or care provider they choose is on board with the kind of birth they want, it can take a few visits even.
A pregnant couple can ask questions like:
- Their education and experience,
- Routine procedures they perform and if they are open to exceptions,
- Their willingness to induce and induction rate,
- Their Cesarean section rate,
- Episiotomy rate and/or if they will support the perineum,
- Application of interventions like IV therapy, fetal monitoring, pain medication, vaginal exams, rupture of membranes etc,
- Birthing positions that they will allow the mother to birth in,
- Their stance on delayed cord clamping
- How many companions will they allow in the birthing room,
- Is there any help/support provided in initiating breastfeeding
- Do they practice gentle C-section, if a true need for surgery arises,
- Are they competent in delivering breech babies,
- Their comfort level with mothers attempting VBAC, VBA2C,
Keep shopping around until you find a care provider who answers in your favor regarding these aspects and is willing to listen and give time, instead of rushing you through the door!