Straightforward birth means giving birth vaginally without any procedures or interventions. Read about the advantages and how to encourage a straightforward birth.
This module covers the definition of straightforward birth, the benefits for mother and baby, and who can have a straightforward birth. Straightforward birth, which is sometimes called natural birth, means giving birth vaginally, without any procedures or interventions. Interventions include those that are carried out in hospital by a specialist hospital doctor, such as:
It is possible to experience a straightforward birth at home, in a birth centre, or in hospital.
Evidence shows that improving opportunities for women to experience straightforward birth has positive benefits, both physical and psychological. Some of these benefits are:
After a straightforward birth they have a greater chance of starting motherhood fit and healthy and able to cope with the demands of a new baby.
Although some women need interventions for the safety of their baby or themselves, many more can have their baby safely without. Having a baby is a normal physiological process. With appropriate support, the majority of healthy women are able to have a straightforward vaginal birth with minimal assistance.
it’s worth noting that guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), released in December 2014, says that for women expecting their second or more baby and having a straightforward pregnancy planning to have their baby at home or in a midwife led unit (freestanding or alongside) is particularly suitable because the rate of interventions is lower and the outcome for their baby is no different compared with having their baby in a hospital labour ward.
Below is a video of a natural birth