Today, there are numerous methods available for the process of delivery. One of them is water birth, which is characterized by a woman remaining in the water during all the stages of labor until the actual appearance of the baby. During the last decades, this option has gained popularity in many countries. This issue presents a serious reason for multiple arguments about its risks, such as neonatal infections or cord tearing. However, despite the existing concerns about the safety, multiple studies have already recognized that it is beneficial for both the babies’ and mothers’ mental and physical health. I will try to persuade my audience this delivery can be a positive experience and possess low risks of serious implications, and I will provide facts, proving this position is correct.
Water birth has always been considered dangerous as it can cause serious traumas and infections. In addition, it requires special conditions, such as a special birth pool or a deep bath, and the water which should be around 37-37.5 degrees Celsius. Bathes come in different sizes, although they usually occupy much space. Due to these reasons, in the United States, there are a few hospitals with pools (approximately 150), though most of them permit using them only during the first stage of labor (Scorah, 2020). However, it has been proven that there is no connection between the method of delivery and possible complications. For example, the University of Michigan (2019) studied 397 water births and 2025 land births and concluded that the outcomes for neonatal intensive care admissions and postpartum hemorrhage rates were similar. Moreover, this method of delivery is usually less expensive because women stay at hospitals for a shorter time and need fewer procedures. It proves that the right approach can guarantee the safety of water birth, which is essential to understand when considering different options for delivery.
Water birth provides numerous benefits to women who choose this method. The real experiences show that a pool during labor can help ease the pain without anesthesia. Experts assume that immersion in water may also shorten the duration of labor, making this method of delivery safer than the traditional way. One of the studies has also discovered that women giving birth in water “may also have a lower cesarean section rate (13.2 percent versus 32.9 percent)” (Marcin, 2018, para. 6). In addition, a research held in China showed that the group of women giving birth in the water had lower chances of episiotomy, 2 percent versus 20 percent (Dekker, 2018, para. 15). Moreover, this option for delivery is considered to be beneficial for the mental state of women.
One of the key issues concerning women when they choose the way to give birth is the opportunity of reducing the pain. Those who have experienced water birth affirm they felt more confident, calm, and controlling during their delivery process. The study showed that 18% of women who gave birth in water and only 5% of women who did not, chose positive words to describe their labor, such as calm, peaceful, and relaxed (Lewis et al., 2018). In addition, it is established that women who have experienced water births reported lower levels of stress the next month after delivery than those who chose standard ways, 6.1 percent versus 25.5 percent respectively (Marcin, 2018). All of the findings demonstrate that water labor has a positive influence on the mental condition of women giving labor, making them feel more natural and decreasing the risks of serious implications.
In conclusion, water birth is a method of delivery gaining popularity all over the world. Experts have proven that this option does not involve increased risks for the health of mothers and babies and provides numerous advantages. Water helps women to ease pain, evade the necessity of using drugs to anesthetize, and lowers the chances of cesarean section and episiotomy. It also decreases the level of distress, allowing mothers to feel calmer and more relaxed, and costs less. This is why more women all over the world choose this method for the delivery, regarding it as gentler and more comfortable.
Dekker, R. (2018). The evidence on: Waterbirth. Evidence Based Birth.
Lewis, L., Hauck, Y.L., Crichton, C., Barnes, C., Poletti, C., Overing, H., Keyes, L., & Thomson, B. (2018). The perceptions and experiences of women who achieved and did not achieve a waterbirth. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 18(23).
Marcin, A. (2018). Water birth pros and cons: Is it right for you? Healthline Parenthood.
Scorah, A. (2020). What you need to know about water birth. The New York Times.
University of Michigan (2019). Water births are as safe as land births for mom, baby. ScienceDaily.