The Doula Guide to Birth: Secrets Every Pregnant Woman Should Know

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Here is your guide to the fastest-growing trend in childbirth—a tradition as old as motherhood itself. Doulas, or professional labor assistants, have led thousands of expectant women through the birthing process in a way that’s safe and meaningful, and that creates the birth and postbirth experience all mothers long for.

What exactly do doulas do?

How to find one that suits you.

What are the “trade secrets” only doulas know but every woman should be aware of (even if you don’t have a doula)?

In The Doula Guide to Birth, senior-level doula Ananda Lowe and award-winning health reporter Rachel Zimmerman have written a most comprehensive book that draws on the wisdom of these skilled experts, whose experience with doctors, midwives, nurses, and hospitals makes them invaluable advocates before, during, and after birth.

* Labor techniques anyone can use
* Pain medication: do you, don’t you—and when?
* What dads and loved ones need and can do best
* When should you really go to the hospital in labor?
* How to prepare for unexpected medical procedures, including cesareans and epidural
* Postpartum—what it’s really like
* A clip-out chart of labor techniques, birth plan worksheets, and much more

Combining science, wit, warmth, and support, as well as the inspirational stories of dozens of mothers and their partners, you’ll find the “doula viewpoint” on every major pregnancy and delivery issue, making this one of the most important childbirth books you’ll ever read and recommend.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
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About the author

Ananda Lowe served for seven years as Assistant Director of the Association of Labor Assistants and Childbirth Educators, which conducts the oldest doula-training program in the country. She is currently a senior-level doula in Boston as well as a maternity massage specialist.

Rachel Zimmerman is an award-winning reporter who covers health and medicine for the Wall Street Journal. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Bantam
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Published on
May 19, 2009
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Pages
304
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ISBN
9780553906592
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Language
English
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Genres
Health & Fitness / Pregnancy & Childbirth
Health & Fitness / Women's Health
Medical / Gynecology & Obstetrics
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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What you need to know to have the best birth experience for you.

Drawing upon her thirty-plus years of experience, Ina May Gaskin, the nation’s leading midwife, shares the benefits and joys of natural childbirth by showing women how to trust in the ancient wisdom of their bodies for a healthy and fulfilling birthing experience. Based on the female-centered Midwifery Model of Care, Ina May’s Guide to Natural Childbirth gives expectant mothers comprehensive information on everything from the all-important mind-body connection to how to give birth without technological intervention.

Filled with inspiring birth stories and practical advice, this invaluable resource includes:• Reducing the pain of labor without drugs--and the miraculous roles touch and massage play

• What really happens during labor
• Orgasmic birth--making birth pleasurable
• Episiotomy--is it really necessary?
• Common methods of inducing labor--and which to avoid at all costs
• Tips for maximizing your chances of an unmedicated labor and birth
• How to avoid postpartum bleeding--and depression
• The risks of anesthesia and cesareans--what your doctor
doesn’t necessarily tell you
• The best ways to work with doctors and/or birth care providers
• How to create a safe, comfortable environment for
birth in any setting, including a hospital
• And much more

Ina May’s Guide to Natural Childbirth takes the fear out of childbirth by restoring women’s faith in their own natural power to give birth with more ease, less pain, and less medical intervention.
The national C-section rate is at an all-time high of 31 percent. Are all these C-sections necessary, or are some of them done simply for the sake of convenience? Inductions seem to be the norm, but are they always needed? Today, expectant mothers are often left feeling powerless, as their instincts are replaced by drugs and routine medical procedures.

What you are about to discover is that you have a choice, and you have the power to plan the kind of birth that's right for you-whether it is at a birth center, a hospital, or at home. In YOUR BEST BIRTH, internationally known advocates of informed choice Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein inspire women to take back the birth experience, with essential advice on:
· Positive and negative effects of epidurals, Pitocin, and other drugs and interventions
· Inducing vs. allowing your labor to progress naturally
· The truth behind our country's staggering C-section rate
· Assembling your birth team and creating your birth plan.

With chapters such as "Obstetricians: Finding Dr. Right," "Epidurals: You Haven't Got Time for the Pain," and "Electronic Monitors: Reading between the Lines," Lake and Epstein will encourage you to consider whatever your doctor, mother, and best friend may suggest in a new light. The book also includes inspiring birth stories, including those from well-known personalities, such as Laila Ali and Cindy Crawford. Packed with crucial advice from childbirth professionals, and delivered in a down-to-earth, engaging voice, YOUR BEST BIRTH is sure to renew your confidence and put the control back where it belongs: with parents-to-be!

"Abby Epstein and Ricki Lake have taken a wonderful and constructive approach to ensuring an optimal birthing experience. Their language creates a 'climate of confidence' for pregnant women and their families, who must make key decisions about where, how and with whom to give birth in a health care system often unresponsive to our needs. This book is like a good friend giving wise counsel." --Judy Norsigian, co-editor of Our Bodies, Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth and Executive Director, Our Bodies Ourselves
Birth as every woman would like it to be

• Recommended by Lamaze International as one of the top ten books for pregnant women and their families

• Includes a 45-minute DVD of six live gentle births

• More than 32,000 copies sold of the original edition

New parents are faced with a myriad of choices about pregnancy, labor, and birth. In Gentle Birth Choices Barbara Harper, renowned childbirth advocate, nurse, former midwife, and mother of three, helps to clarify these choices and shows how to plan a meaningful, family-centered birth experience. She dispels medical myths and reimagines birth without fear, pain, or violence. Harper explains the numerous gentle birth choices available, including giving birth in an independent birth center, at home, or in a hospital birthing room; finding a primary caregiver who shares your philosophy of birth; and deciding how to best use current technologies. She also provides practical advice for couples wishing to explore the option of using a doula or water during labor and birth to avoid the unwanted effects of drugs and epidurals.

The Gentle Birth Choices DVD blends interviews with midwives and physicians and six actual births that illustrate the options of water birth, home birth, and vaginal birth after a prior Cesarean section. The DVD clearly reveals the strength of women during childbirth and the healthy and happy outcome of women exercising gentle birth choices. It is a powerful instructional tool, not only for expectant parents, but also for midwives, hospitals, birth centers, and doctors.
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