Your Birth Plan Is Supported by ACOG
Your birth plan just got better! A new statement was just released by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. They are now recommending limiting interventions in labor for women who meet certain criteria. They’re also recommending one-on-one support more and nonpharmacologic pain management measures.
What does this statement mean for parents giving birth?
Well, for starters it means that ACOG is recommending a more individualized approach to labor management. For many, this may also mean more research to back up their ideas and wishes for their birth plan. That’s always a great feeling! Does it mean you will see your providers recommending any or all of these things in labor? You just may! We’ve worked alongside some very supportive, forward-thinking providers! At minimum it’s a great resource to have available when you have a conversation with your providers about what their philosophy is on birth.
ACOG is encouraging the following:
- Delaying admission to L&D when mom and baby are doing well!
- Frequent contact from someone supportive.
- Education, fluids by mouth for hydration, positions of comfort, and nonpharmacologic pain management techniques such as massage or access to water immersion.
- Continuous one-to-one emotional support because it’s associated with improved outcomes for women in labor.
- Obstetricians to facilitate intermittent fetal monitoring via a Doppler device for low-risk women who want that option in labor. Adopting protocols and training all staff and providers on how to use a Doppler.
- Tailor interventions to best meet the needs of each woman.
- Movement during labor for comfort and to promote optimal fetal positioning as long as to not compromise appropriate monitoring and medical treatments or obstetric complications.
- Breathing and pushing in a way that is most effective and desired by the woman giving birth.
- Unless an immediate delivery is necessary, women, especially those who never given birth before who also have an epidural, can be offered a period of rest of 1-2 hours at the onset of the second stage of labor (pushing stage), unless the women have urges to bear down sooner.
- Leaving the membranes intact for those with a “normal” progressing labor and when the baby is tolerating labor well. In other words no routine use of amniotomies (intentional breaking of the baby of waters). AROM (artificial rupture of membranes)