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What countless women have learned about birth over the years we share with you in three articles: Trust Your Body, Your Labor Guide and Comfort Measures for Labor. Together they provide a way to think about birth; a description of what is happening during the process of labor and birth and in the first hour after your baby is born; and an overview of the many ways that women maintain confidence, help nature do its work and achieve the highest level of comfort possible.
The articles contain the essential elements of what we call Lamaze. Trust Your Body reminds you that your body knows just what it’s doing and that it’s important to create a birth environment where you can be supported and work well with labor. The information should increase your confidence in your ability to give birth to your baby.
Your Labor Guide presents a comprehensive overview of the process of birth and some of the ways to help labor and birth progress more easily.
And finally, Comfort Measures for Labor describes the knowledge and skills that will help you as you do the hard work of giving birth.
These three articles, then, open the door to understanding the importance of pain as part of the normal, natural process of labor and birth.
You'll notice that these articles do not mention some things that you may think are essential for a safe birth, like fetal monitors and intravenous fluids. Technology certainly has a place in childbirth, but interventions even as simple as routine IVs or fetal monitoring, can actually hinder your ability to respond naturally as labor progresses. In losing the feel of the contraction, you also lose the "signal" that directs you to walk, sway and squat during your contraction. Responding to what you feel in labor is nature's powerful way of helping you give birth to your baby.