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When a mother delivers her baby without any surgical intervention, it is called a normal delivery. There are many factors associated with pregnancy and birth which make the difference between normal delivery and c-section delivery. The age of the mother, the position of the baby, the health parameters of mother and baby and the term of the pregnancy, etc.

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Before the Treatment

How it is Performed

Preparing for a Normal Delivery

  • Eat healthily
  • Go for regular checkups
  • Take multivitamins and folic acid supplements
  • Go for regular prenatal visits and tests 
  • Regular pregnancy appropriate walk and light exercises in consultation with your doctor
  • Yoga and meditation
  • Avoid pain and other medications as much as possible

During the Normal Delivery

There are several stages of the labour and delivery process when a woman gives birth to a baby through normal delivery.

First Stage: Labour and effacement of the cervix: During this stage, the cervix dilates and even becomes softer. The first stage of labour can last for 12 to 13 hours when it is the first baby and for following deliveries it is usually around 8 hours or so (on average). This stage is divided into three parts and these are early labour, active labour, and the transition phase. Early labour is when the contractions come after a gap of 5 minutes and the cervix ends up dilating to 4 centimeters. In the active labour phase of the delivery, the gap between the contractions goes down to 3 minutes and the cervix dilates to 7 centimeters. In the early phase of labour the mother can stay at home but when it gains speed to active labour she needs to reach the hospital as the time for delivery is near. The transition phase is when the cervix has dilated fully to 10 centimeters and the contractions come quickly at 2-minute intervals.

Second Stage: The mother pushes the baby out and the pushes are timed with every contraction. The baby comes out head first via the birth canal and sometimes an incision (episiotomy) needs to be made to make the vagina opening bigger to help the baby come out seamlessly.

Third Stage: Also called afterbirth, in this stage once the baby is born the placenta Is pushed out via the vaginal canal. It may be helped along by the doctor by putting pressure on the lower abdomen.


Possible Complications and Risks 

Although relatively safe, there are few complications and risks associated with normal delivery and these are,

  • Failure to progress
  • Fetal distress
  • Perinatal asphyxia
  • Shoulder dystocia
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Malposition
  • Placenta previa
  • Cephalopelvic disproportion
  • Uterine rupture
  • Rapid labor

Benefits of a Normal Delivery

The benefits of vaginal delivery are:

  • Less infection risk for both mother and child as no instruments used
  • Faster recovery as the mother goes back home the next day whereas she may have to stay under observation for up to a week in case of a c-section delivery
  • Bacteria and microbes in the vagina give an advantage to the immune system of the baby
  • Beneficial for a healthy functioning respiratory system of the baby
  • The lactation process becomes smoother as a normal delivery encourages the release of hormones necessary for this to happen

Follow-Up Care After a Normal Delivery

  • Do continue follow-ups with your Gynecologist till at least 4 to 6 weeks after the delivery.
  • You need to take care of the stitches if an episiotomy was done, airing the stitches for 10 minutes every day and sitting in a sitz bath helps.
  • Do rest and eat healthy to compensate for what the body has gone through, as is recommended by the doctor, for a 4 to 6 week period.

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Normal Delivery