|Early Signs of Pregnancy|
Your body had nine months to prepare for delivery. All that time, the hormones circulating in the blood have caused various difficulties for you (leg swelling, fever...) but they were actually in the mission to ultimately facilitate the final act. They caused softening and stretching of muscles and ligaments in the birth canal, so that the stretch during the delivery would not be a sudden process. Before we begin with a description of each of the three different phases of labor, we want to draw your attention to the list of things for the hospital, which we put together to assist you in a bag packing :)
Anyway, back to birth, biologists still do not know for sure how the delivery begins. In a way, the maturity of the baby starts the process, and prematurity is actually a rare occurrence. There are three stages of birth:
1. Contractions and the cervical opening
2. birth of a child
3. Ejecting the placenta
Well, let's start with a detailed description of each of these phases...
Contractions and the cervical opening
In the first stage of labor contractions begin or muscle contractions of the uterus. The contractions occur gradually every twenty minutes and are becoming stronger and more frequent until finally they occur every two or three minutes, and last for a minute - this is an obvious sign that the second stage of labor is approaching, or birth of your baby. The contractions opened lower end of the uterus, its neck (cervix), and push the baby into the pelvis, usually head down. At this stage, the mother can walk, if it is more convenient than lying down. As the contractions intensify, you should try to alleviate them. Exercises to facilitate birth that are taught in the earlier stages of pregnancy will certainly help. In addition, if the woman is relaxed, the cervix opens up more quickly. The first stage ends when the cervix is fully open and ready to release a baby.
Contractions are usually the first sign of childbirth. A woman, who has already given birth, could, a few days before giving birth, feel a "relief". It occurs when the baby's head is firmly seated in the pelvis. In the first pregnancy it is happening three to four weeks before labor, but does not help to determine the exact time of delivery.
Sometimes delivery starts with the breaking of membrane that surrounds the baby. When the baby is set head down into the pelvis, it can penetrate that membrane, causing leakage of amniotic fluid through the vagina. Water breakage almost always accelerates the delivery so the doctors use it to artificially hurry the birth of the pregnancy that is carried over the term.
Birth of a child
Second stage includes pushing the baby out of the uterus and the birth canal. The muscles that surround the vagina are soft and are stretching so that the passage of the baby is not difficult (provided that the bones of the pelvis do not prevent the passage of the Child). To determine the diameter of the exit from the pelvic is one of the most important duties of a doctor who oversees labor. If the exit is too narrow, the doctor will probably prepare for the birth by Caesarean section.
This stage of labor rarely lasts more than an hour (in women who have already had children this phase is much shorter). When the cervix is fully open, the baby has to go through a narrow birth canal. At the same time the mother can help by holding her breath and pressing as if to initiate bowel movements, thereby accelerating delivery. It is possible to facilitate the pain by inhalation of anesthetics, injection of drugs to relieve pain, and sometimes by injections in the spine (epidural).
If the second stage is prolonged, your doctor may use forceps (forceps or vacuum extractor – of the negative pressure) to facilitate the exit of the baby. Sometimes, an episiotomy (a simple incision in the vagina which can spread the opening of the birth canal and thus prevent tearing of the skin or muscle) can be done. The incision is sewn immediately upon completion of delivery.
Sometimes the baby is in the womb in such position that it cannot get out head facing forward. In the case when the baby is born butt forward, a full attention is required of a doctor who assists in childbirth.
After the birth, you have a brief pause in which you are probably thrilled with the first meeting of your baby. At this time, the midwife, or even in recent times, a husband, cuts the umbilical cord and a wound of a baby`s belly button is taken care of.
After the birth, the doctor checks the birth channel and takes care of possible injuries. In the delivery room you will remain for some two hours, and the midwife will regularly monitor your appearance, the pressure and intensity of postpartum hemorrhage. The most important thing is that at this moment your baby is in your arms. It is over!
Before you have your baby in your arms, baby will undergo its first check ups. It is done in the first minute of the baby's life and the same examination is repeated a few minutes later - in the fifth minute. This test (Apgar score) includes testing of baby’s heartbeat, its breathing, muscle tone, reflexes and skin color. Each of these parameters is evaluated numerically from 0, 1 and 2. The highest number of points of this review is 10, and anything above 7 is normal. So the perfect Apgar score is 10 /10. If the Apgar score is less than 7, the pediatrician is called, and the check up continues in a special ward for babies.
In addition to determining the Apgar score, baby`s weight will naturally be measured, as well as its length and the radius of the head. A detailed review will include checking of the spine, genitals, mobility of the hips, or exclude other irregularities. The average newborn baby weighs between 3,500 and 4,000 grams and the length is about 50 centimeters.
Ejecting the placenta
The third stage is the expulsion of the placenta, and it happens when the baby is already born. The uterus is slightly contracting, leading to separation of the placenta. The placenta is then, in some 10-15 minutes after the baby is born, spontaneously delivered or delivered by mild pulling of the umbilical cord by midwives.