Most of you have seen or are aware of the fetal monitors that are often strapped around mom’s belly while laboring at a hospital. There are two belts, one that monitors the baby’s heartrate and one that monitors mom’s contractions. But, do you know all of your options regarding fetal monitoring during labor? Do you know there are different types of monitors? Do you know what the evidence behind fetal monitoring says? You need to know these things. There are so many options and choices during pregnancy and birth.
You need to learn the pros and cons, risks and benefits with all of them. Yes, all of them. Because friend, you don’t want to be caught off guard and be unsure of what you want or not have enough information about your options at a time you may be faced with a decision in labor. You’ll be in labor…not a place or a time in which is best to learn the information, weigh your options and make a decision. And what’s more is that you want to learn of these things during pregnancy so that you have plenty of time to not only choose what is best for you, but discuss your preferences with your provider. You want all of those things hashed out and agreed upon before the big day. And you want to come up with a Plan B if something happens that would not allow you to continue with Plan A. This is just one of many reasons why it is so important to educate yourself…take a quality childbirth education course (a private, non-hospital class is recommended), read read read, hire a professional birth doula that will not only help inform you of your options and create a birth plan that is right for you, but support you in your decisions and remind you of what you want while you are in the throes of labor, and be sure that your provider is on the same page (and if s/he isn’t, find a new one that is!).
"If you don't know your options, you don't have any." ~ Diana Korte
Amber Piller - Professional Birth Doula and owner of Agape Birth Services. Serving Northwest Houston including Jersey Village, Cypress, Tomball, Spring, and Katy Texas.