Nowadays, it is becoming more and more common for pregnant women to seek out a midwife to help her through the whole process, from finding out that she is pregnant and confirming it with an ultrasound to the actual day that her child comes into the world. For nine months, she can work with a woman who has a total and complete understanding of the female body, and who doesn’t just treat her the same way that a traditional doctor would—midwives always take the holistic perspective, and they don’t just look at pregnancy as a medical condition. They consider how a woman is physically and emotionally handling the pregnancy and work from there.
But is it safe to work with a midwife? And who is it really right for? The answer is yes, it is safe for women with low-risk pregnancies across the board—midwives are qualified and capable. As the years go, midwives are only becoming more popular with pregnant women who are seeking holistic care. It is truly a welcome development in the field of women’s medicine. Here are 20 reasons why pregnant women who are expecting this year should consider working with midwives in 2019.
20 She’ll Have The Option To Give Birth At Home
Home births are rising in popularity, and according to The New York Times, they are typically considered a safe option for women who are considered to be “low risk” in pregnancy. Working with a midwife will give a woman the option to prepare for a home birth from day one. Midwives are qualified to assist women in giving birth at home. In fact, many women these days actually preferred the experience of giving birth at home with a midwife to the experience of giving birth with a team of doctors at the hospital. Every woman will feel a little differently!
19 A Midwife Can Provide Longer Prenatal Care Visits
Let’s face it—unfortunately, even the most caring and professional doctors can rarely spend as much time with their patients as they would like in an ideal scenario. In fact, according to Mama Natural, many doctors do wish they had the time to take a more holistic approach to women’s healthcare, but they simply do not, and it is a shame. Midwives, on average, can provide longer prenatal care visits. This gives pregnant women the opportunity to ask more personal questions about their health and their unique situations. It is a win-win for everyone involved, both mom and baby!
18 She Will End Up With A Team Of Care Providers
When a woman chooses to work with a midwife, she is not just working with the midwife alone. According to What to Expect, midwives work with other healthcare professionals throughout the process. This means that women who work with midwives will be assisted by a team of experts who can provide her with help in all sorts of crucial areas. This is not just a one on one thing—helping a woman having a healthy pregnancy for both herself and her baby is a major group effort as far as midwives are concerned! Women can benefit from working with a team.
17 Natural Birth Has Become Much Safer
It is only natural that some women would have hesitations around the topic of, well, natural birth. While it is true that natural birth was once considered risking, the procedure has been getting safer and safer as the years go on and medical research on the subject advances. According to Mama Natural, there are risks that are unique to giving birth in either a hospital or home setting—it’s really just about what the woman feels most comfortable with. Choosing a natural birth with a midwife is a perfectly viable option for many women, and midwives are experts in this area.
16 She’ll Have More Agency Over Her Choices
What is one of the biggest perks of choosing to work with a midwife? In one word, it’s all about having more options. According to Wellness Mama, midwives don’t just handle natural home births. They can also work in hospital settings as well. And if you don’t want a totally natural, medication free birth, but you are interested in working with a midwife, guess what? They can use some medications to ease the pain during childbirth. No matter what a pregnant woman is seeking, a midwife can probably help her figure out the right birth plan for her own needs.
15 Midwives Views Pregnant Women As Their “Partners” In Healthcare
What is one of the main difference between working with a traditional doctor and working with a midwife? One of them is the major philosophy that underlies the whole field of midwifery. According to The Bump, a midwife’s goal is not to tell a woman what to do throughout the entire time of her pregnancy—instead, her goal is to work WITH the mother to be. This is because midwives believe that at the end of the day, a woman knows her body best, and she should feel like she has agency in her decisions through the entire nine months.
14 A Midwife Won’t Rush The Process
Is it really possible to “rush” childbirth? Short answer: yes. According to The Bump, there are plenty of times when women who have given birth in hospital settings without midwives report that they felt very rushed—like they had to give birth by a certain time, or they would need interventions. While there are times when interventions are totally necessary, some other women feel that they rushed even though it was medically necessary. At the end of the day, a midwife makes a commitment to not rush the process, which makes many women feel more comfortable working with a midwife.
13 A Midwife Will Provide Fewer Interventions
Yup, we just mentioned that interventions are more likely to take place in a hospital, but since this is a major reason that so many women choose midwives, it is definitely a point that is worth discussing in more detail. According to The Bump, births that are assisted by midwives generally require fewer interventions—it’s really that simple. However, it is important to note that women with high risk pregnancies will likely need interventions in order to give birth safely, and there’s nothing wrong with that! But they are typically better off giving birth in a hospital setting in that case.
12 Midwives Seem To Have A Sense Of “Women’s Intuition”
Alright, maybe it sounds a little bit cheesy, but it’s definitely true—one reason that so many women are choosing to work with midwives is because they seem to have a sixth sense when it comes to women’s intuition. According to Wellness Mama, midwives do feel that this is a very important aspect of their profession. After all, midwifery is basically the world’s oldest profession—women have been helping each other through childbirth for thousands and thousands of years! It just seems like there is a sense of innate wisdom that has been passed down, along with the medical knowledge.
11 Midwives Focus On Boosting Women’s Confidence
It’s no secret that many pregnant women feel very nervous about actually giving birth, especially first time moms. And it’s understandable—no matter how excited they are to have a baby, giving birth is often presented as something very scary and uncomfortable. Sure, a certain amount of pain is unavoidable, but according to What to Expect, one important thing that midwives focus on is helping women boost their confidence before giving birth. Remember, women have been doing this since, well, the beginning of the human race, and midwives want their patients to know that they are more than capable of doing it, too.
10 The Mother Will Have Way More Control Over The Process
Here’s another major draw when it comes to working with a midwife: the mother has way more agency when it comes to how she chooses to handle her entire pregnancy. According to Mom Junction, working with a midwife gives a woman more opportunities to ask the questions that she really needs the answers to, and to be a more proactive participant in her birth plan. Many women feel like they get more say in the process when they choose to work with a midwife, simply because they get to spend more time with them and get to know them on a deeper level.
9 Midwives Can Provide Lots Of Individualized Education
Midwives don’t just provide physical care—they also consider themselves to be educators. According to What to Expect, this is a major part of their role when it comes to supporting pregnant women. Midwives strive to educate women on everything they never realized their bodies could do when it comes to pregnancy! There is so much for every woman to learn, and it is so great to have someone who you can ask anything without feeling any shame around it. A midwife is there to educate at every step of the process, through every trimester, until the baby has finally arrived.
8 Midwives Will Account For A Woman’s Emotional Needs
Any woman who has ever had a child knows that caring for a woman throughout her pregnancy is not just about the physical side of things—any professional also has to consider her emotional state and mental health as well. According to Mom Junction, this is one of the other big perks of working with a midwife. If you need someone to give you a pep talk, let you hash out your fears, or someone to soothe your anxieties, she has heard it all, and you don’t have to worry—she has the answer that you have been looking for.
7 A Midwife Actually Can Be A More Affordable Choice
Many people believe that working with a midwife will be expensive, but this is not necessarily the case. According to The Bump, the cost of working with a midwife is actually decreasing as it becomes a more and more popular choice. Overall, the cost of any kind of medical care during pregnancy is really going to depend on your own individual insurance plan, so the details will vary. But the core of the matter is that cost does not have to hold you back when it comes to working with a midwife. You may be able to find an affordable option.
6 Midwives Can Still Connect You With A Doctor
Even healthy women whose pregnancies are deemed “low risk” worry about things going wrong when its time to give birth—and who wouldn’t? That’s just a normal human reaction to the unknown. Thankfully, this does not have to stop you from working with a midwife. According to Mama Natural, midwives are always connected with local hospitals just in case of emergencies. If something does go wrong, and suddenly, things are looking a bit too risky for a home birth, she can easily arrange for a woman to be transferred to the nearest hospital so that the baby can be delivered safely.
5 Midwives Can Help With Responsibilities After Delivery
Everyone knows that giving birth is not exactly a walk in the park. But what comes after that is much more difficult: the task of raising a happy, healthy human being! According to What to Expect, many women choose to hire midwives because they do help out with some of the small responsibilities immediately after birth. For example, if a woman gives birth at home with a midwife, she can stay to make sure that things are in order and that both mom and baby are feeling comfortable. If a woman needs extra help with something, she can always ask.
4 She’ll Have A Lower Chance Of Needing A C-Section
It is absolutely true that there are times when a woman must have a C-section for medical reasons. In fact, some women elect to have them in advance at the recommendation of their doctor. According to What to Expect, women who work with midwives have a lower chance of needing a C-section. If a woman has a low risk pregnancy, and she knows that she wants to minimize her chances of needing a C-section, she may want to choose to give birth with the assistance of a midwife. Midwives are known for providing a lower rate of C-sections.
3 She Can Give Birth In A More Private Setting
Let’s face it, when it comes to the choice between giving birth at home or giving birth in a hospital, not every woman is really thinking about the differences in medical treatment—some of them just would fee more comfortable being in a more private setting at home. According to Mama Natural, many women report feeling more at ease while having a private home birth with a midwife. A midwife does work with a team, but she can definitely ensure much more privacy and a calmer setting than a woman would typically experience when she is giving birth in a hospital.
2 Midwives Have To Get Officially Certified
While it is easy to see why there is some confusion over the education and certification of midwives (after all, it is only recently that working with a midwife has become a mainstream choice once again), its also important for women to know that not just anyone can call herself a midwife. According to Baby Centre, midwives must become certified by an accredited education institution. These institutions and varying certifications will vary from country to country. But the bottom line is this: midwifery is a legitimate profession, and these women have to know their stuff before they finally begin practicing.
1 Midwives Can Be More Flexible With Plans
Yes, a midwife will help a woman sort out the ideal birth plan for her, but if things change, she is very open to being flexible. According to Mama Natural, this doesn’t just apply to the actual birth—midwives are willing to be flexible at every step of the way. The way that they are able to schedule their time allows for this, and it can be a lifesaver for a mother-to-be who is busy or just feeling indecisive about how she wants to move forward. The flexibility can really be a big benefit for many pregnant women.
Sources: whattoexpect.com, mamanatural.com, wellnessmama.com, babycentre.com, momjunction.com, thenewyorktimes.com, thebump.com