Normal Vaginal Delivery
Underlying Problem Requiring a Vaginal Delivery:
A normal vaginal delivery is generally the anticipated outcome of a pregnancy. There are a number of approaches to childbirth, based on culture, complications, and religious beliefs. With a normal vaginal delivery, the baby passes from the uterus, into the birth canal, and out of the body through the vaginal opening. The process may happen with our without medical intervention and supervision. In the United States, a qualified doctor, or sometimes a midwife, will oversee the birthing process.
One of the most important things to remember when considering a normal vaginal delivery, is that \"normal\" may vary from woman to woman. Generally speaking however, there are three main stages of childbirth. The first stage involves contractions of the uterus. During this time, the cervix will thin (called \"effacement\") and open (called \"dilation\"). At this point in the birthing process, the bag of waters, or amniotic sac, may rupture and the woman may pass some bloody tissue from the vagina.
The contractions work to expel the baby through the cervix, and the woman is considered \"fully dilated\" when the cervix has reached approximately ten centimeters. While an average amount of time can be calculated for the first stage of labor, it will vary significantly from woman to woman.
The second stage of labor is the actual delivery. The baby.s head is engaged in the pelvis and it is time to push the baby out through the vaginal opening. Again, this stage of a normal vaginal delivery can vary in time to complete. Once the baby has been delivered, the placenta, or afterbirth, is expelled from the body, thus completing the third stage of childbirth. This usually takes place within 15 minutes to half an hour after the birth. Breastfeeding the baby shortly after a normal vaginal delivery can help to speed up this process because it naturally triggers the muscles contractions required.
Recovery from a Vaginal Delivery:
Recovery from a normal vaginal delivery will generally take a few weeks, although most new mothers are able to perform a variety of daily functions shortly after the birth. The majority of women in the U.S. give birth in hospitals, and the amount of time they remain after the baby is born depends on the input of both the patient and the healthcare providers. Vaginal bleeding and the expulsion of some tissues can be expected for a few weeks after leaving the hospital.
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