What happens during a vaginal delivery?
Vaginal delivery is the natural process of giving birth, where the baby passes through the vagina. It is the most common way for women to give birth. During a vaginal delivery, the mother’s uterus contracts and the baby is pushed out.
3 Stages of Vaginal Delivery
- 1st Stage – Labor: Labor is the period when the uterus begins to contract, helping move the baby through the birth canal.
- 2nd Stage – Delivery: This is when the baby begins to move through the birth canal and is eventually born. During the delivery, the mother has to push.
- 3rd Stage – Afterbirth: After the baby is born, the placenta and membranes are delivered.
Signs of Labour
Signs of labour can include:
- Back pain or abdominal cramps
- A frequent or intense urge to urinate
- Discharge or “bloody show,” which is the discharge of mucus and blood from the vagina
- Water breaking, which is when the sac of fluid around the baby breaks open
Preparation for Vaginal Delivery
There are several things that can be done to help prepare for a vaginal delivery.
- Stay healthy: Before delivery, pregnant women should follow a healthy diet, take prenatal vitamins, and get regular exercise.
- Choose a birthing team: Select a doctors and midwife who are experienced in vaginal deliveries.
- Take childbirth classes: Childbirth classes prepare couples for the labor process, and may include information on maternity care, labor and delivery, breastfeeding, and caring for a newborn.
- Have a plan in case of an emergency: It’s important to have a plan in place in case of an emergency, such as an agreement with your doctor for a Cesarean section, if needed.
During the vaginal delivery process, there can be minor, as well as more intense, pain and discomfort. However, every woman’s experience is different, and it is important to talk to your doctor to understand what to expect. With a little preparation and the right birth team, vaginal delivery can be a safe and rewarding experience for the baby and mother.