In the typical hospital environment it is sometimes difficult to trust that birth is natural, to have confidence in your ability to give birth and to stay in harmony with your body as labor progresses. Fetal monitors, intravenous lines, restrictions on your activities and the flurry of nurses and doctors in and out of your room certainly give the impression that birth is not going to happen naturally or easily. In fact, in the midst of the ever-increasing technology that is a part of hospital birth, women must work hard to maintain confidence and remain relaxed. Calm, capable and constant labor support can help you transcend the noise, the machines and the unfamiliar environment.
It is encouraging that many hospitals no longer insist on the routine use of continuous fetal monitors, intravenous lines and restricted activity. Women may walk during labor, use showers and Jacuzzis, listen to music and wear their own clothes.
However, it is still easier to relax, feel comfortable and safe and be confident in a familiar place, in a space that you can control. Because of this, some women choose to give birth in out-of-hospital birth centers or at home. This is a safe option for healthy women who receive prenatal care and are attended by a skilled midwife or physician. There must be planned hospital backup, and the home or birth center environment should be safe and comfortable.