Psychological Benefits of Giving Birth at Home
Childbirth used to be an intimate and private experience that took place at home. However, with technological advances, hospitals have become the first option and almost the only place where women bring children into the world. Although medical safety may be greater in a hospital, the human and emotional factors are often neglected. Therefore, giving birth at home is becoming a more popular option because of its psychological benefits.
Despite the fact that this practice is still not very common, many places recognize the advantages of giving birth at home. For example, in countries like Great Britain, Finland and the Netherlands, it’s covered by insurance.
Why are more women choosing to give birth at home?
More and more women are choosing to give birth to their children at home, mainly because of the misuse of medical and technological resources at hospitals. Most hospital deliveries are mechanical, medicalized, and lack empathy. In addition, those delivering the baby follow rigid protocols that are often invasive and unnecessary.
The medical professionals will start following routine measures as soon as you arrive at the hospital. For example, they’ll carry out an enema and a shaving, which often isn’t an option for the mother.
In addition, they’ll continuously monitor you, which forces the mother to stay in the same position for hours. There’s also excessive medical intervention because they’ll often use synthetic oxytocin and perform episiotomies, even if they’re not necessary.
As a result, expecting mothers play a totally secondary and passive role. The doctors don’t take their emotions into account. In addition, in many cases, the doctor won’t even inform her of what’s going on or ask for her consent before certain procedures. All of this normalized obstretric violence leads women to want to regain control and intimacy at such an important moment in their lives.
Psychological benefits of giving birth at home
Now that you’ve read a little bit about a woman’s experience giving birth at a hospital, we’ll talk about the psychological benefits of giving birth at home.
Delivering a baby is a highly personal experience. Therefore, when it comes to such a vulnerable moment, you need to be in a familiar, comfortable and warm place. This process requires intimacy, companionship, support and understanding. That’s why giving birth at home, surrounded by loved ones, and with the guidance of empathetic professionals, is very beneficial for the mother.
More natural delivery process
Giving birth at home makes the process more natural. The woman’s body is physiologically prepared to give birth, but it needs its time to be respected. That’s why excessive intervention can be detrimental.
When it comes to a home birth, the medical professional will periodically monitor mother and baby, but not continuously. This allows the mother to move around and do other activities, instead of being bedridden and solely focused on the pain she’s feeling. In addition, you can choose to give birth in water or to put yourself in various positions that your body may want to be in during the process.
More control and freedom
The greatest psychological benefit of giving birth at home is definitely the amount of control and freedom the woman has. For example, you can come up with your own specific birth plan and make sure that everyone adheres to it.
You can also have an active role during birth by setting the pace and making decisions. Health professionals will be there to support you, collaborate with you, and to work for your benefit. In addition, the mother will always be informed and can decide each step, which will give her an invaluable feeling of control and safety.
Is it safe to give birth at home?
It’s important to emphasize that a home birth isn’t always a valid option. The pregnancy must be low-risk, and the baby should be developing normally. In addition, it’s essential to have qualified professionals at your home birth, as well as a transfer plan in case of emergency.
With all of these things in mind, giving birth at home is safe and is a far more emotionally satisfying experience for many women. Remember, the mother should be the protagonist of her delivery, which is why her active involvement is essential. Every woman has the right to have a fond memory of such an important moment in her life.