Before we start talking about this topic, let us make it very clear that there is absolutely no judgement here if you have had a cesarean or used epidurals to suppress pain during delivery. However, with many doctors increasingly suggesting a cesarean over normal delivery – under the assumption that the women today would not want to go through the labor pain – we thought it will be beneficial to put together a list of advantages for normal / un-medicated / natural delivery. However, this article should not be considered in isolation before you make a decision. There are pros and cons for all forms of delivery. Read more about cesarean, its benefits and risks here.
10 Benefits Of Normal Delivery
Now let us look at some reasons why, if you have a choice, you should opt for a normal delivery:
- Quicker recovery for the mom: Vaginal delivery is a long, painful, physical and mentally grueling hardship for the mom – no doubt. But very shortly after delivery the moms will feel great and like their normal self again. There are no major abdominal stitches that require healing and the endorphins released during delivery will relieve the after pain
- Shorter hospital stay for mom and baby: As a direct consequence to quicker recovery of mom is the shorter hospital stay. Mom and baby can be discharged as early as 24 hours after delivery. This is great economically, especially when considered alongside the fact that the cost of normal delivery is often Rs. 10-20k less than C-sections
- Baby is fully ready: One major advantage of normal delivery is that you are not intervening with your body’s and your baby’s plan. They are fully grown with matured organs. And this means lesser medical interventions later!
- Mom and baby connect better: When the mom’s body is left alone during labor without any external medication, it goes through many hormonal interplays that not only help mother cope with the delivery, but also help improve the immediate attachment between the mom and the baby. For instance, the high levels of oxytocin in a mom’s brain right after natural delivery is known to initiate maternal behaviors and help moms instantly connect with the new born, his smell and his touch. Note: We are talking about the first couple of hours after delivery. This in no way suggest that moms who went through C-sections connect with their babies lesser
- Mom can breastfeed better: Moms who were administered anesthesia to help in labor and moms who have had C-section generally feel queasy and weaker right after delivery making it difficult for them to physically hold the baby and breastfeed. This is a major boon for moms who have had a normal delivery. They will not only be feeling physically capable of sitting up and breastfeeding, the hormones produced during labor will help in better nursing experience
- Healthier for baby: When the baby passes through the birth canal and vagina, they receive certain bacteria that then settle in their intestines. These protective bacteria play a great role in building the baby a strong immune system
- No risks from surgery: While there are advantages in a C-section, at the end of the day, it is a major abdominal surgery, which comes with a long list of risks including bleeding, infections in the stitches, unfavorable reaction to anesthesia and scarring. A normal delivery is hence a much ‘less risky’ approach.
- Less complications in future pregnancies: Since there are no scars and stitches left in the uterine during a natural delivery, there would be no complications of any tearing in the uterus during subsequent pregnancies
- Less respiratory risks in baby: When the baby passes through the birth canal, his thorax is compressed, expelling amniotic fluid from his lungs. This helps him to breathe air better once out in the world, causing fewer respiratory problems in the initial days
- Mom feels empowered: There is a sense of accomplishment and empowerment associated with normal delivery. Having gone through the extreme pain and physically pushing a life out of one’s body gives a woman more confidence
We would also like to quickly add that a normal delivery is not without risks – especially with respect to sexual dysfunction for you and birth trauma for your child. However, the benefits usually justify the smaller probability of risks involved. We recommend the following articles to help you have a healthy normal delivery: 10 Simple Pregnancy Tips to Help You Have A Normal Delivery and Exercises During Pregnancy for a Normal And Natural Delivery.
Also, none of the above mentioned benefits matter if you have a medical justification to do a C-section, in which case it is best to listen to your doctor’s advice. Read more about this here.