When you give birth at CarePoint, you have the option of being attended by a Certified Nurse Midwife or CNM. CNMs are nurses who continue their training at a Master’s level in midwifery care.
They are licensed by the state, board certified, and passionate about supporting women through the transformative experience of pregnancy, labor, and delivery.
Midwives are also experts at facilitating physiologic childbirth. Sometimes referred to as “natural” childbirth, physiologic birth is a method that views birth as a normal, innate process that does not require medical support or intervention unless a problem arises. It depends on the body’s natural, physiological birthing process rather than medical methods for a successful delivery.
In the same way that digestion, blood circulation, and respiration are processes that typically occur without conscious effort or medical assistance, childbirth often unfolds spontaneously. The key to physiologic birth, then, is patience in allowing the labor to progress at its own pace and in its own way. This often requires a different set of tools or techniques to support mothers through the childbirth process.
The midwifery model differs from the medical model in more than just methods, though; it views pregnancy and childbirth with a distinctly positive attitude. Their philosophy is that pregnant women are not sick, so birth should not be treated as an illness. One CNM who attends deliveries at CarePoint explained that minimal involvement is central to physiologic birth: “What science has shown is that the less we do, the better it goes.”
Many pregnant women already have preferences for practices that support physiologic birth even if they are not acquainted with the term itself, which might include:
- Quiet, peaceful birthing setting
- Ability to eat or drink during labor
- Freedom to move around during labor
- Option to rock or sway on a birthing ball
- Choice of birthing position
- Allowing baby and mother to stay together immediately after birth
These options facilitate an environment where stress is low and women have the space to tap into their instinctual coping mechanisms to deal with the discomfort and intensity that is normal with childbirth.
While physiologic birth is typically reliable, it is still often conducted in a hospital for the rare cases when things don’t go exactly as expected. Midwives keep a close eye on potential concerns while avoiding intervening too much or too soon. “We do it in a hospital because a baby is precious,” says the CNM. Having a physiologic birth with a midwife in immediate proximity to the medical services of a hospital is often the best of both worlds.
CarePoint is deeply invested in creating a birthing center that is fully supportive of physiologic birth. Expanding their services to include Certified Nurse Midwives and a broader variety of pain management methods will help reduce the number of unnecessary c-sections as well as give women more options in achieving the childbirth they desire.