How to Have an all Natural Labor The Ultimate Guide

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All the Best Tips to Have a Natural Childbirth

Everyone envisions their perfect labor differently. My birth plan is not your birth plan. But a lot of us more crunchy mamas have a similar desire in mind: all-natural labor.

If your best idea of your birth plans does not involve an epidural, little to no pain meds, and little to no medical intervention; then you’ve found yourself in the right place.

In this post, I am going to share with you my best advice for sticking with all-natural labor and delivery, as well as sharing valuable information and tips from around the web as well.

**This post contains affiliate links to items I own and love and am confident will benefit you immensely! You can read the full disclosure here.**

how to have an unmedicated childbirth

How I Created the Ultimate List to Prepare for Natural Childbirth

I’m currently in my last trimester of pregnancy and preparing for all-natural labor and delivery. This isn’t my first rodeo either, it’s actually my third! But that doesn’t stop me from preparing as the day grows near.

What’s so interesting is that I have already had an all-natural birth. I’ve also had an epidural birth. Having the dichotomy of experiences already has led me to choose to do all I can for another natural birth.

But let’s be honest, natural birth can be hard. It is a commitment and even when you’ve mentally made that commitment it is oftentimes hard to stick to it without an arsenal of mental and physical tools.

My First Natural Labor Experience

My all-natural labor was actually really easy. It was my second child and she came fast. From the time contractions first began she was out in 6 hours. She was delivered 30 minutes after I was first checked in the hospital at only 3 centimeters.

Plus I never pushed, I breathed her out.

Going from 3 to 10 centimeters in 30 minutes was extremely painful, I’m not going to lie. And though I wanted to try to birth her naturally if I was able, I wasn’t fully decided either way. But the speed that labor progressed gave me no choice but to have an all-natural birth.

There’s a good chance I could have a very similar experience with lightning-quick progression for this labor. But what if I don’t?

What if I have to have those contractions a lot longer than I’ve ever felt them for before? Sticking to my all-natural birth plan might become a challenge.

So I’m taking this opportunity to arm myself with the skills and knowledge to have an all-natural birth, and sharing all that information with you.

Did you know proper prenatal exercise can help make labor go more smoothly? Being strong and prepared for that big day ahead can be a HUGE help. The revolutionary Perfect Pregnancy Plan [Fitness] Program has prenatal workouts specially crafted to prepare you for labor, prepare your body for breastfeeding and carrying around baby immediately postpartum, and strengthens your pelvic floor and helps to prevent or lessen diastasis recti!

Learn more about the PPP program and don’t forget to use code 10OFF at checkout for either the fitness course, nutrition course, or the bundle!

How to Best Prepare for a Natural Labor and Delivery

1. Labor at home as long as you can

This is important if you are birthing in a hospital. Clearly, if you are having a home-birth or using a birth center, then this isn’t applicable.

But once you get to the hospital there is a good chance you will be placed in a bed, strapped to a fetal monitoring machine, and given IV fluids (or at least an IV block). Depending on your hospital you may be allowed to walk around during labor, or you may have to stay right next to if not in that bed.

Laying down and staying in any one position is horrible for managing labor pain and also slows the progression of labor.

More pain + longer labor = really hard to keep it all natural.

If you are at home, you can move around. You can get into the bathtub, take a hot shower, be on all fours, bounce on an exercise ball, anything that helps ease the pain that you are going through.

Just don’t wait too long if birthing in a hospital is your plan or you just might end up having your baby at home. Keep in contact with your OBGYN or midwife about how you are progressing and consider your drive time and possible traffic to the hospital.

postpartum weight loss while breastfeeding diet and exercise plan

2. Try Different Positions

Labor is the last thing from constant pain. It comes in ever-changing waves. You can’t plan to deal with it in only one way, you must be open to various positions for whatever pains you are having at that time.

  •  You might feel the most comfortable walking around keeping yourself busy with menial tasks like continually adding to your birth bag (ya that was me).
  • Perhaps you’re exhausted and want to try a side-lying position.
  • You could be suffering from severe back labor in which case getting on all fours and having your partner press into your back may ease the pain.

Here are 11 great labor positions you can try to ease the pain.

3. Let your plan be known

If you are planning on sticking with an all-natural labor and delivery you need to voice that. Be sure your spouse knows and is educated as you are to the benefits of a natural labor as well as why it’s so important to you.

Communicate your desire for natural labor with your doctor so that they know your wishes and let them know why it is an important choice to you as well.

The more support you have, the easier it is to continue with a natural childbirth.

Be sure to let the attending nurses know your desire for a natural birth. A lot of times, there is a lot of pressure for a woman to get medication in a hospital birth setting. It is typical to get epidurals, pain medication, and medication to speed or slow labor. Many times none of these are necessary and many times they aren’t even helpful.

From the time you are checked in, be sure your nurses know your plan. You should have a written birth plan in your file, but it is important to communicate your desires as well so that hopefully your entire team can be supportive.

4. Be prepared

  • Do your research. Take a birth course. There’s a  great one available online so that you can take it in the comfort of your own home, with your hubby, on your time! It was made by a 16-year nurse and mom and I’m so glad I took a prenatal course to ease all my fears. Plus it was even cheaper than the one offered at my birth center! And that one I can’t take in my jammies! Well, I could, but it might be weird. Check out the best online birth course here.
  • Go beyond a prenatal course and prepare by researching the pros of having a natural childbirth. If you know all the benefits of having your baby naturally, you will be more apt to stick with your plan.
  • Read birth stories from moms who have already been through a natural birth. Pick out what helped them because maybe it would help you too! You can learn from others’ experiences.

how to have an unmedicated childbirth

5. Consider a water birth

Are you familiar with water births? It can be your birthing option if you decided to have a home birth or give birth at a birth center.

Water births are known as the midwives’ epidural. Laboring in a tub is supposed to be extrememly relaxing and help you manage the pain of childbirth much better!

Plus, the warm water makes you less prone to vaginal tearing! Huge bonus.

Tearing “down there” can be horrible. With proper preparation like perineal massage with certain special essential oils can cut the risk of tearing way down as well!

6. Consider Hypnobirthing

Hypnobirthing is a special form of childbirth that has absolutely amazing results for many women. By practicing relaxation and breathing techniques in the months leading up to labor, women who practice hypnobirthing claim to have very little if any pain during childbirth.

I’ve been told stories of women being sent home from the hospital or being told not to come in yet who practiced hypnobirthing because they sounded so calm talking through a contraction, noone could believe they were already in active labor!

I haven’t tried hypnobirthing myself yet but am due to have baby #3 in 4 weeks and have read and studied the hypnobirthing book for this labor and am daily practicing the breathing and relaxation techniques so that I can apply them.

Relaxing is not one of my natural strengths, and I feel invigorated and prepared for this labor from what I’ve learned by studying Hypnobirthing!

I will come back to update this post after birth and let you know how it went for me!

7. Visualize

Visualize how you want your labor to go. Spend time thinking about and imagining your labor progressing the way you want. Your mind is extremely powerful. Use the power of your mind and visualization in labor as well.

  • Visualize your baby moving into position with your contractions.
  • Visualize your cervix being opened by the contractions you are feeling.
  • Visualize your baby descending into the birth canal.

8. Prepare with prenatal exercise

Labor is long and intensive. Well, it doesn’t have to be, but it usually is. Prepare for that marathon by going into it strong and fit.

There are a lot of exercises that can prepare you for labor so that you can stick to that all natural plan like certain yoga moves that open you hips and squats that can help prepare you for maintaining various labor positions for extended lengths of time.

The Perfect Pregnancy Plan fitness program directly addresses your prenatal strength needs going into labor and I highly recommend it! Just follow along with the workouts and you’ll be way more prepared for the big day ahead.

Not to mention it works in conjunction with a stellar nutrition program and together they teach you all the tips and tricks to get the most from your prenatal nutrition and fitness to help positively influence your baby’s genetics to set them up for a lifetime of health! You can learn more about both here and use my code 10OFF at checkout for you guessed it, 10% off!

9. Learn how to breathe your baby out

Have you heard of people “breathing their baby out?” I mean aside from when I mentioned it earlier in this post.

Many people believe that in most natural labors you do not need to even push as we are conditioned to think of labor as being. A woman, laying on her back, feet held up high, screaming as she pushes as hard as she can for so long trying to bring that baby into the world.

With breathing your baby out you let your body do most of the work. You allow your uterine contractions and proper body positioning to push baby out for you. Breathing baby out is much slower than pushing, (usually, not for me in my freak dream labor, but usually it is more slow) it prevents perineal tearing and is easier on mom and baby. Learn more about breathing baby out.

10. Learn the stages of labor and what to expect

Labor and delivery can be overwhelming. How long will contractions be? How far apart are contractions at the beginning of labor? How long are contractions in the early stages of labor vs. active labor?

Knowing what to expect and how labor typically progresses is so helpful to not feeling overwhelmed. When you are properly prepared for an experience, you can rock it!

11. Keep your mouth relaxed

Surprisingly the muscles around the mouth are somehow connected to the muscles in your perineum. Seriously! Here’s an interesting exercise to try. First, do a kegel. Then do a kegel and purse your lips, then try to release the kegel muscles. It’s way harder!

I learned this and a whole bunch more absolutely amazing tips from Mommy Labor Nurse! Do you want to feel totally prepared for childbirth? Check out her website!

the perfect pregnancy plan

12. Listen to relaxing music and sounds

It helps to have a soundtrack, or two or three (ok so maybe I tend to overprepare for things) created to bring to the hospital.

You can get an mp3 player and load it with your favorite music, just be sure to put it in your hospital bag with batteries! Or you can use Prime music if you are an amazon prime member already (if not you can try it for free here. I am totally hooked, I get all your baby needs in 1 or 2 days, you get prime movies which I am watching as we speak, AND prime music for your labor and delivery tracks!)

Some great soundtracks to consider for labor:

13. Essential Oils

Essential oils can be healing and calming. If your hospital allows you can bring essential oils that you really like to smell. Perhaps to even diffuse, or to drop into the tub you get to labor in (if that is an option.)

Some popular scents that are helpful during labor are:

14. Breathe

Easier said than done during contractions. But remembering to breath is essential. Practicing how to breath is essential. There are a lot of different theories for how to breathe during labor.

I recommend reading up on Hypnobirthing. There are multiple breathing techniques in there that can really help you remain calm and relaxed during labor so that you feel less pain while your uterine contractions remain highly effective.

15. Practice relaxation techniques before labor

Whether or not you get a book or tapes to practice relaxation, you can still do it on your own! There are a lot of YouTube videos to practice meditation and relaxation techniques.

You might love some, and you might hate some. (You’ll find some voices annoying and some music too pingy, just try another one.) You may like to practice relaxation techniques with your birth partner’s guidance, or you may like to practice it on your own mentally, or you may enjoy the guidance a recording like on YouTube provides.

Try out different things. If you can learn to better control your mind, you can learn how to better manage your pain.

Wrapping Up How to Prepare for an All Natural Labor and Delivery

With these 15 tips and tricks you will be completely prepared for your labor and delivery. If you apply these tips you will feel prepared, calm, and in control.

You can do this! You can have a drug free labor and delivery if that is what you want. Be sure to work hard getting your mind and body prepared for the experience. And good luck mama!

Are there any other tips and tricks you’ve heard of that have helped you in preparing for a natural labor and delivery? I’d love to hear in the comments below.

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All the Best Tips to Have a Natural Childbirth

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  1. The different position thing doesn’t work for me. Once I’m near transition all I want is to lie down and not move. My first 2 got stuck. Believe me they tried to get me in different positions. It was too painful-all 4’s, on my side, etc. I either wanted to sit in the tub or lie on my back which I know is probably the worst position! Add chiropractor care to this list. I honestly think that’s what helped me get my third out so easily. Due with my 4th in May and hoping to go back to the birth center.

    1. Wow that is so interesting! I was the opposite. On my third labor I was out of hospital and could walk around freely. During transition I was getting a bit tired so tried laying on the bed for a contraction and it was horrible I could barely move. As soon as it stopped I rolled off and said aloud, “Yup not doing THAT again!” That is a wonderful idea to add, I haven’t tried prenatal chiropractic myself. I hope your next labor and delivery goes wonderfully. Birth centers are amazing.

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