Midwives are frequently involved in the care of expectant mothers throughout pregnancy and delivery in other countries, but they have traditionally been less common in the U.S. In recent years, this practice is changing and the demand for midwives from expectant mothers in this country has exploded. When you’re considering your options for labor and delivery in Arlington Heights, could a midwife be right for you? Here are some of the benefits of working with a midwife during your pregnancy and delivery.
Midwives are typically able to develop closer relationships with their patients during the prenatal period. They are less bound by the strict schedules of OBGYNs and are inclined to use that time to build a rapport with their patients. The bond is important when midwives transition to the delivery room with their patients, and coach the patients through the child birth experience. This personalized attention can continue after the birth with lactation support and contraceptive counseling.
The Midwives Model of Care states that both pregnancy and birth are natural and can occur without interferences for most women. If natural childbirth is important to you, then a midwife can be the right fit. Midwives strive to prevent the need for interventions in the delivery room, including induction and regional anesthesia. That doesn’t mean that a midwife can’t or won’t help you build a birth plan that involves medical pain control or that you will be at risk if you do require interventions for a safe delivery. Midwives work closely with OBGYNs and ensure every woman gets the right care, whether that means natural birth is not safe or desired.
Delivery Room Advocate
Even if you require an OBGYN during labor and delivery, a midwife can be an important advocate to have during delivery. Your midwife can strive to ensure that your birth plan is honored and offer explanations and support as you progress through labor. Most women find the relationship with their midwife extremely valuable no matter how their eventual delivery occurs.
After turning to a midwife in Arlington Heights for medical support throughout pregnancy and childbirth, many women assume that they’ll never work with a midwife again. But actually, midwifery care extends to all phases of a woman’s life . Many women prefer to work with a midwife during menopause because midwives follow a model of care that puts the patient first and that evaluates the whole patient. This means that in addition to discussing your menopause symptoms and recommending solutions, your midwife will carefully examine your health habits, lifestyle, stressors, and risk factors.
Midwives offer an integrative approach to guiding women through transitions in life. They often provide lifestyle counseling, including counseling on diet and exercise. When appropriate, midwives can prescribe medications such as hormone replacement therapy. Along with addressing menopause symptoms, a midwife can continue to provide gynecological care and health screenings to check for diabetes, depression, and heart disease. Midwives enter the healthcare field because they are keenly dedicated to helping every woman enjoy wellness at every stage of life.
Many expectant mothers are not aware of the options available for labor and delivery. Labor and childbirth is a very personal experience, so it only makes sense that this major life event be personalized to suit the individual needs of each new mother. Midwifery is one option that you may consider. There are some common misconceptions about midwives and the care they provide. Here is the truth behind some common myths.
Myth: Midwives are not formally trained.
In the U.S. there are several types of midwives . The most numerous are Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) that attend births is a hospital setting. The midwives at Northwest Professional Obstetrics and Gynecology are CNMs. Our midwives and all CNMs in Illinois have graduated with a Master’s degree from an accredited midwifery program. They have passed a national certification program and are required to maintain certification with continuing education that keeps them up to date on advances in knowledge and enables them to provide the best care through pregnancy, labor and birth.
Myth: Midwives only deliver babies.
Our midwives do deliver babies, but they do much more. Midwives also provide extensive prenatal care. Your midwives will partner with you from early pregnancy, helping you to deal with nausea and vomiting, and making decisions about the genetic screening tests that are offered. As the symptoms of early pregnancy subside your midwives educate you about diet, exercises and danger signs of pregnancy. In the later months of pregnancy the focus turns to preparing for the birth of your baby, providing information on options for labor and birth, the benefits breastfeeding and routine tests and medications for the newborn. Throughout your pregnancy your midwives will monitor your baby’s growth, watch for any signs of complications, prescribe prenatal vitamins or any medications you may need, order routine tests and ultrasounds and discuss all test results with you.
Midwives also provide well woman gyne care, such as annual exams; treat women’s health problems like irregular or painful periods, vaginal or bladder infections, or symptoms of menopause; and midwives are experts in all forms of contraception. Midwives provide care for women from the time the first period begins until after menopause.
Myth: Midwives don’t work with obstetricians.
Certified Nurse Midwives work as part of a healthcare team. If a woman has minor complications during her pregnancy, the midwife will consult with an obstetrician on how to manage her care. If more complex problems develop in pregnancy, the midwife and doctor work together in collaboration to provide the best and safest care. In the rare instances when there are severe complications, a woman may be referred to an obstetrician to take over her care. Both Certified Nurse Midwives and obstetricians are part of a healthcare system that includes perinatologists, also known as maternal-fetal medicine doctors, that specialize in managing high risk pregnancies. These doctors are always available to both midwives and obstetricians to offer their expertise in managing complications of pregnancy or labor.
A midwife serving families in Arlington Heights can provide a range of services, including gynecology, family planning, premenopausal care, and of course, pregnancy and childbirth care. For the birth of your child, consider working with a midwife. The midwifery philosophy places the woman at the center of her own care. Midwives empower women to make informed decisions before, during, and after pregnancy.
And as you’ll learn by watching this video, a midwife can be there for you during your entire labor and delivery. A midwife can provide lactation support, counseling on childcare and safety issues, and postnatal healing guidance for new mothers. Long after you bring your baby home, your midwife will be there to answer your questions and care for your growing family.
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