As old as time itself, labor and delivery isn't oft the place for new developments, but here are six new ways people are doing things in the delivery room.
(1) Chowing down during delivery
Delivery requires a lot of energy. After all, they don’t call it labor for nothing. Limiting moms to ice chips for hours on end is well past due, so why was there ever the rule? Doctors didn’t want her tummy full—other than full of baby—if she had to undergo anesthesia. It’s since been shown that eating a small meal may be beneficial with little to no risk.
(2) Holding off on clamping the cord
For delayers, it isn’t delaying; it’s everyone else who is prematurely clamping—and they have history on their side. Before the mid-’50s early clamping was anything within a minute of birth. Today, the cord is commonly clamped within 15–20 seconds, and delayed clamping is between 30 and 60 seconds. For premature babies, a scientific benefit has now been found, but the ideal time for term babies has yet to be definitively established.
Of course, many delayers will be happy to know they can hold off on clamping and still bank their babies' cord blood.
(3) Pillaging the hospital’s mesh underwear
A little secret of the birthing club is the comfortable mesh panties that are provided after the delivery. Designed to hold a great big pad over the area while being stretchy, comfortable and completely disposable, they are often a new mother’s best friend and can even be purchased online once your hospital bag’s hidden stash runs bare.
Three’s no longer a crowd! If you shared last night’s dinner on Instagram and often post your ever-growing belly on Facebook, you may have no objections to inviting a bunch of family and friends into the delivery room. Gone are the days when even the dad was relegated to the waiting room, often with a burning cigarette in hand. The latest generation of mothers finds the more the merrier.
The discomfort of childbirth is lessening as your eyes move from word to word, reading this on the screen … with each deep breath you are growing more comfortable with what to expect … you find yourself sinking and drifting, so comfortably, deeper and deeper, with every breath, into a peaceful state.
You get the concept.
Hypnobirthing has gotten a “big push” from celebrities like Jessica Alba, who turned to hypnosis to create a peaceful and more comfortable delivery.
(6) Saving the umbilical cord
With delayed cord clamping and, now, storing cord tissue on our list, who knew the umbilical cord was so important after the baby was born? Once considered medical waste, it is more known today for its opportunities. Preserving cord blood has been around for 25 years, but cord tissue was recently found to be rich in another type of stem cell showing promise for diseases once thought untreatable such as ALS, multiple sclerosis and sports-related injuries.