How to Overcome The Top 5 Fears Surrounding Childbirth
- Fear of having a c-section (cesarean birth)
A cesarean birth can often, but not always, be avoided if it’s not wanted. Sometimes there are emergencies that make it a non-negotiable. The more you learn about what can cause this the more likely you’ll be free to have a vaginal delivery.
- Fear of unwanted interventions
Many can be avoided with learning why are they used. There are situations where you may still need one but if you don’t know what the different types of interventions are and why they are used it can be difficult to advocate for yourself. And, just because you have one intervention does not mean you will have another.
- Fear of getting an epidural
This is a very personal decision and is completely optional. The only time it becomes not an option is when you need a c-section. Otherwise, it comes down to your pain tolerance. Now you may want an epidural and still be afraid and that’s ok. I encourage you to read about the procedure and talk about it with your care provider.
- Fear of not being able to handle the pain
The good news is not everyone describes childbirth as painful. This is another very individual experience. Learning about coping techniques is a great place to start to help ease this fear. Breath work, positions, movement and vocalization are all great options. The more prepared you are the more likely you’ll be able to get into the zone and get through it . Every person’s tolerance is different and the best you can do is educate yourself on your medical and non-medical options.
- Fear of the unknown
This is probably one of the biggest fears. Education is the best way to move past this and feel more confident. Don’t be afraid to ask questions from your doula or your care provider they are here to help you! The more you know about something the less you will fear it.
Overcoming fear of childbirth looks different for everyone. No one likes to talk about interventions or emergency situations but it’s important to at least have a basic understanding. In the event this happens the last thing you want is to have to make a decision about something you know nothing about.
Learning about what to expect during childbirth is the easiest way to help reduce your fears. It’s especially important to make sure you understand not only what you want out of your birth but the potential interventions that may be needed. Birth is unpredictable, and the best way to prepare for that is education. Just because you read or heard something can happen does not mean it will. What it does mean is you will be prepared to make decisions as needed. This ensures you can stay calm, present and confident!