Staci Bishop

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Reading Roundup 9/8 (Perineum & Vaginal Exams)

Here are a few articles I've come across as it relates to vaginal exams before or during labor as well as perineal care before and during delivery.

Is Peri Massage Necessary in Pregnancy? - Gives an excellent step-by-step guide for perenium massage. Note: You can also use olive oil or coconut oil (my favorite!)

STUDY: Perineal Massage - Conclusion: "Perineal massage is an effective approach to increasing the chance of delivery with an intact perineum for women with a first vaginal delivery but not for women with a previous vaginal birth."

Stop Doing Kegels: Real Pelvic Floor Advice for Women (and Men) - This is one of my top recommendations for pregnant women. Squatting is very beneficial in pregnancy and labor & delivery!

Episiotomy, 'A Little Snip' Childbirth Routine, Curbed by New Guidelines - "Clinical trials conducted in the '80s and '90s found that episiotomy cuts can, in fact, turn into even deeper lacerations during delivery, damaging the area around the rectum. " <---- Then why is this still happening routinely?!

How to Know When Vaginal Exams in Pregnancy and Labour are Useful and When They are Harmful - "While this can be a very useful procedure to find out very useful information, women also need to understand the full picture." I am not a fan of vaginal exams for curiosity sake. This article covers why.

The Myth of a Vaginal Exam - Even vaginal exams have risks (mainly infection) and they do not have to be a part of routine prenatal care.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Improving Birth - Nashville Rally

Today, I got to check an item off my Bucket List.

Attend a rally for something I believe in.

CHECK! set up rallies all across America today for Labor Day and I was priviledged to attend the event in Nashville.

The Purpose - The National Rally for Change is to encourage and insist that all maternal healthcare providers practice evidence-based care.
Despite the weather, we had a fantastic turnout! I was also lucky enough to meet Mickey Jones of Nine Months & Beyond who gave an amazing speech right before we took to the street with our signs!
I was certainly encouraged and I know others were as well. I feel like we are on the verge of a huge movement of change for maternity care in America and I'm excited to be a part of it.
Here is the local news coverage:

Reading Roundup 9/3 (Homebirth & Doulas)

Homebirth Rate by State

STUDY: Homebirth in the United States, 1990-2009 - "After a decline from 1990 to 2004, the percentage of U.S. births that occurred at home increased by 29%"

Home Birth - Why It's Necessary - "Simply put, when there is no home birth in a society... essential knowledge of women’s capacities in birth is lost to the people of that society—to professional caregivers, as well as to the women of childbearing age themselves."

What is Home Birth? - Great article covering the basics of home birth including the following topics. What is it? Who does it? Why? Is it right for everyone? What's it like? How much does it cost?

What is the Evidence for Doulas? - EXCELLENT article explaining the roles of a doula and evidence for how they help women in labor. "Overall, women who received continuous support were more likely to have spontaneous vaginal birthsand less likely to have epidurals, any pain medication, negative feelings about childbirth, vacuum or forceps-assisted births, and Cesarean births. In addition, their labors were shorter by about 1 hour and their babies were less likely to have low Apgar scores at birth."

A Doula Does NOT... (Tips for Doulas) - This post clarifies some common misconceptions about the role of a doula.

Top 8 Reasons Why You Need a Doula During Birth and After - A doula still has so much to offer even after delivery. Page 2 of this article gives you some great reasons to hire a postpartum doula.

Why a Doula is Your BFF (BreastFeeding Friend) - "Mother's who had doulas were less likely to experience a delay in their milk coming in. 68% of women receiving doula care and 54% of women receiving standard care were breastfeeding at 6 weeks."

Listening to Mothers II Survey - This is a popular study that is referred to often when it comes to analyzing the experience that women have in childbirth. The report includes not just "what" happened in their birth but how they "feel" about what happened. This report is very telling.

STUDY: Continuous Support for Women During Childbirth - Author's Conclusions: "Continuous support during labour has clinically meaningful beneļ¬ts for women and infants and no known harm. All women should have support throughout labour and birth."