Is It Normal to Be Afraid to Give Birth?

It’s completely normal to be afraid of giving birth, whether it’s your first child or your third. The fear of the childbirth process is so common that it would be statistically abnormal if you weren’t at least a little afraid of some aspect of it.

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The following are some of the most common fears women face about giving birth. If you are facing any of these fears, you are far from alone.

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Fear of Something Going Wrong
Anytime someone is admitted to the hospital, there is always a certain element of fear that something will go wrong. However, when a pregnant woman is admitted, her fear is twofold. There’s the fear that something will happen to her and the fear that something will happen to her baby.

Most births will go smoothly without any issues. Despite the rarity of complications, they sometimes do happen. Approximately four out of every 1,000 babies born in the United States will die at birth. Many others will suffer injuries caused by fetal distress. Visit here to learn how to identify fetal distress.

Complications to the mother are also not common. When they do happen, some common issues women fear include receiving an episiotomy or hemorrhaging. Some women are concerned that complications can cause them to not be able to have any more children. There is also the fear of dying during birth. Maternal morbidity claims 700 to 900 lives in the U.S. each year.

Fear of Pain
If you’re expecting, tt’s natural that you’d be worried about the pain of labor and delivery. The good news is, many women report that the pain of their first birth was not as bad as they had imagined it would be. If the pain becomes too much for you to bear, pain relief is usually available. Some pain relief options that are available to women in labor include:

● Breathing techniques
● Hypnobirth
● Acupuncture
● Acupressure
● Pethidine injection
● Nitrous oxide
● Epidural anesthesia

With so many different choices, you’re sure to find one that works for you. Drug-free is also an option. Many women report having easier recoveries after giving birth without medication.

Fear of Embarrassment
The fear of being humiliated because you’ve lost control of your body during labor is common. We have all heard stories of people accidentally defecating during birth. It happens, and it’s nothing to worry about. Doctors and nurses in the obstetrics ward see this every day. If it happens to you, chances are you’ll be too busy pushing a baby out of your body to notice.

Some other common fears of embarrassment during delivery include the fear of being naked and exposed, the fear of vomiting, and the fear of having strangers watch you while you urinate. Many women also fear that their water will break in public.

Fear of Becoming a Parent
The fear of becoming a parent is something I didn’t think would happen to me until it did, right when I was about to push my daughter out. Suddenly I realized that with just one or two more pushes, I was going to be responsible for another human for eighteen years. I couldn’t have stopped pushing even if I’d wanted to, but still, I briefly considered it.

What You Can Do to Manage Your Fear
You can manage any fears you have about the birth process or the responsibilities of parenting by learning everything you can. Buy books about labor and delivery, read articles on reputable websites, and don’t be afraid to ask your doctor or midwife questions. It can also be helpful to talk to other women who have given birth before to learn more about their experiences.

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