How to Increase Your Chances of Having a Vaginal Birth

There are many benefits to having a vaginal delivery. Women who have a vaginal delivery have a quicker and easier recovery. Since the body naturally adjusts to labor, it is often the best option.

There may be medical reasons or emergencies where a cesarean birth (C-section) is needed. In these cases, a C-section may be the safest choice for you and your baby. If there isn’t a medical reason to have a C-section, it’s best to have your baby through a vaginal birth.

Your provider can help if you have questions about having a C-section. You should avoid C-sections when they are not medically needed, such as to avoid scheduling conflicts.

Learn More

If you are pregnant or a new mom, we offer personalized education and support. Our Perinatal Care Management program can help you feel confident about your delivery and beyond. To learn more, Send us a secure email at any time or call us at 1.800.859.9889 ext. 2025, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Times You May Need a C-Section

If you are at risk for complications, your obstetrics (OB) provider may suggest a C-section. This may be safer for you and your baby. If your OB recommends a C-section, be sure to ask questions and discuss your concerns. See the sidebar for a list of questions to ask.

If there is a medical reason to have a C-section, your OB will recommend scheduling the surgery. Talk to your OB about waiting until at least 39 weeks of pregnancy to schedule the C-section. This gives your baby the time they need to grow and develop before birth. Also be sure to ask if vaginal birth may be possible in future pregnancies.

To learn why 39 weeks may be best for your baby, visit the March of Dimes website.

Recovery from a C-Section

A C-section is a major surgery. As a result, the recovery from a C-section takes longer than the recovery from a vaginal birth. The hospital stay after a C-section is longer as well.

Questions to Ask Your Provider

There are a few questions you can ask your provider before having a test, treatment, or procedure to help you decide whether to get it.

  • Do I really need this test or procedure?
  • What are the risks and side effects?
  • Are there simpler, safer options?
  • What happens if I don’t do anything?

Source: Choosing Wisely

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