One of the largest studies done on home births was published in January 2014. I cannot explain to you how happy I was to see people actually doing something statistically about the rise in home births in the US. Ya’ll, I’ve never been a fan of reading statistical studies and data and hypothesis and yada yada yada, but I read this and it’s impressive. Bear with me here…
Over the span of 7yrs, researchers collected data from 16,924 women with a planned home birth. Thats a lot of mamas….and babies…and daddies making babies. 89.1% of women with a planned home birth, successfully gave birth at home.*
This is what happened to the 10.9% whose birth did not go as planned…
- 10.9% mama’s transferred to a hospital, most likely due to “failure to progress”
- 4.5% required oxytocin augmentation (Pitocin) and/or an Epidural.
- 1.2% assisted vaginal birth (use of vacuum or forceps)
- 5.2% cesarean section (84.4% of these were 1st time c-section)
- 1.5% mama’s transferred postpartum
- 0.9% babies transferred
Overall, 93.6% had a successful spontaneous vaginal birth. Let’s take a moment to applaud these numbers! I don’t know about you, but these numbers make my heart jump with joy because of the amount of REAL oxytocin out there doing it’s job.
Now, I’m not here as a spokesperson for home births (although I will if you want me to be!). I’m here to point out that with a national cesarean rate of 32.7% (CDC), compared to this data, something isn’t adding up. Even the World Health Organization, suggests our rate shouldn’t exceed 15%.
Why is our rate so high? Why does it seem like every other mama these days has to have an epidural or emergency c-section?
The only reason I can fathom why our rate is so high is due to the lack of awareness in our culture of what birth can be.
Are too many mama’s going into labor without any idea what her options are? Do women believe their bodies aren’t good enough to do what they were made for? Is society so afraid of “pain” that we will do anything just to avoid it?
You fear because you do not know.
Nothing good comes from decisions based on fear. If we all let fear dictate our decisions, I’m sure most of us would hardly step foot outside our doors.
But that’s the thing…
If you open your eyes to what birth can be, then the fear somehow dissipates.
Just like a runner prepares for a marathon, prepare for the birth of your child. No athlete shows up the day of the race without having practiced for weeks, strategically mapping out how they intend to run the race. Just like any athlete prepares for competition, every woman should prepare for birth.
Because that’s our thing! woop woop
Birth sets us apart. Only we can do it, and aint nobody going to tell me I can’t. So start watching birth videos. Ask mama’s about their birth stories. Begin asking questions.
Because if we don’t, fear will win. And I don’t know about you, but that’s not ok with me.
*Stapleton, S. R., Osborne, C. and Illuzzi, J. (2013), Outcomes of Care in Birth Centers: Demonstration of a Durable Model. Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, 58: 3–14. doi: 10.1111/jmwh.12003