Home or hospital?
More and more women are opting for home births assisted by midwives. What are the advantages of having a home birth?
- The woman may feel more in control as she is in her own environment
- She has more privacy
- She will be assisted by the midwife of her choice
- It is cost-effective
- It can be a more relaxed and peaceful atmosphere
- There is no unnecessary intervention
- A woman may use natural ways of relieving pain
- She can have as many people present as she wishes to
- She is never separated from the baby
- There is less distraction
- An episiotomy can be avoided
- Birth is seen as a natural process rather than a “medical” event
- Older children don’t have to deal with the absence of their parents
Make sure that you are assisted by an experienced, qualified nurse/midwife or by a qualified physician. In case of a medical emergency, you should be within 20 minutes of the nearest hospital.
According to Dr Martin Puzey, Gynaecologist, a woman should be cleared as being a low risk case for home birth by her gynaecologist. “People tend to forget that giving birth is a very dangerous process and is a time in a woman’s life when things can go seriously wrong,” he says. “Many years ago, the first thing a father asked of the delivering doctor after the birth was ‘how’s my wife … did she survive the birth?’. If a woman has a high risk pregnancy, she should examine her alternatives.”Hospital birth
You may want to consider the following advantages of a hospital birth:
Would you opt for a hospital or a home birth? What influences your choice the most?
- The baby can be delivered by an obstetrician
- There are different pain relief options available
- Hospitals are well equipped in case of emergency
- Breastfeeding clinics or lactation consultants are available in most hospitals