The birth of a baby is a joyful occasion. But the strain both the mom and the child go through on that joyous day is inexplicable.
The 3 Stages of Labour and Child Birth
There are three stages of labour. The first one starts at the neck of the womb wherein the expectant mother’s uterus starts to contract or tighten regularly. After this pre-labor, she goes into an active labor time when her cervix has dilated or opened. She does her breathing exercises and tries to relax. She will begin to feel the contractions and the breaking of the water soon. The second stage begins when the cervix has dilated its 10 full centimetres. The baby gets slowly pushed into the birth canal as the womb pushes it with contractions. Awaiting the glorious moment, the mother pants and stops pushing as the baby’s head begins to show out. The second stage may take for hours for mothers who expect their first born. For those have had a baby before it may get over in ten minutes or less.
But it is not over as yet! The mother still has to go through the third stage: the delivery of the placenta. The uterus has to slowly contract and detach the placenta from its walls. Less painful contractions start again after the birth of the baby. And the mother helps the process by pushing it out as directed by the midwife or doctor. Then the placenta would peel away through the vagina and then, it is over! Yet, the uterus still has some more work to do. It has to contract hard in order to stop the bleeding in the area where the placenta was attached. With this the process of birth is completed.
The hormone oxytocin is released once the baby is born. It is oxytocin, which further initiates the contractions of the uterus for placenta delivery. The secretion of breast milk for the new born and the process of lactation are also undertaken by oxytocin. Now the body has to shrink the uterus back to its previous, pre-natal size. Slowly, the mother recovers and heals from the stress and strain of delivery.
Herbs that Aid the Delivery Process
- Echinacea is a wonderful herb gaining popularity. It is great for the premature rupture of the membranes.
- Black Cohosh has been used in some cultures for a stalled labor. It speeds up the third stage of labor, aids placenta delivery and helps with emotional stress.
- Shepherd’s Purse prevents haemorrhage and postpartum bleeding at the same time promoting the contractions of the mother’s uterus. Since it can clot blood it should not be administered during the labor.
- Motherwort is again a calming herb to women who undergo a lot of stress and anxiety during their cramps.
- Cram Bark is a muscle relaxant that relieves that wonderful pain of labor.
- Fennel is used after delivery to enhance the production of breast-milk. It cures digestive stress, spasmodic and inflammatory problems.
- Pasque Flower would take away all the pain and tension from the mother and helps those who suffer from depression.
Most of these herbs work in combination with others and the perfect combination of these herbs can give you the best results.