Switching to a C-Section

While you’ll likely do everything that you can to avoid the necessity of a C-section, the fact of the matter is that they’re relatively common. In fact, the national rate for cesarean deliveries is just under 30 percent. You’ve got at least a one in four chance that you’re going to have to give birth via surgery. In many cases, you may not know until it’s close to time to give birth whether or not you’re going to need to have a C-section. Learning all you can know about the options you’re going to have lets you make the best of the birth experience, even if you do, for medical reasons, need a C-section.

Here are some things you can do to make the best of your C-section:

  • Include provisions for a C-section in your birth plan. Your birth plan shouldn’t be built around a C-section unless you know early on that you’re going to need one. However, you should put some contingencies in place in the event that it does happen so that your care providers have certain guidelines to follow.
  • Learn about your birthing location setup. Find out what kinds of restrictions and policies are in place for the cesarean birthing room at your location.
  • Try to arrange for some support people with you during the procedure. In an ideal world, you’ll have at least two people with you for support: one for you, and one for your baby. Whether or not your birthing location allows this is, of course, an issue in some cases.
  • Use your breathing and relaxation techniques before surgery. Those childbirth classes were still useful. Use those exercises to help keep yourself calm before your C-section.
  • Discuss anesthesia and other medications with your doctor. Make sure you know what kinds of side effects that you can expect from the medication that could impact both you and your baby.
  • Ask to have a free hand. While you’re not going to be able to hold your baby immediately after birth with a C-section, ask to have one had free to start establishing some touch.
  • Find out about breastfeeding. Ask your doctor when it will be safe for you to begin breastfeeding your baby (if that’s your intention).

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