My Midwifery Philosophies
After my first child was born, I decided to train as a childbirth educator. This was because I wanted to help women and their families prepare for pregnancy, birth and parenthood. I went on to become a midwife and to set up in private midwifery practice. You can read about my midwifery philosophies below.
- I believe that parents should be supported in making informed decisions about pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and parenting. To help this learning process I offer an extensive resource library.
- In our society lots of people rely heavily on technology. However, I believe that intervening in the normal processes of pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding should only happen when the benefits clearly outweigh the risks. This is a key philosophy which underpins my work.
- Continuity of care of midwifery care for women throughout pregnancy, birth and up to the first six weeks following birth is found to decrease interventions in labour and increases likelihood of satisfaction of care (Cochrane Review, 28th April 2016). I believe continuity of care models should be more widely available to women.
- Parents have a right to choose the type of birth they feel will best meet their needs as a family. I encourage parents to be fully informed about all the available choices before making their final decision.
- Pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding are intrinsic parts of a woman’s sexuality. Therefore, as one who cares for pregnant women and breastfeeding women, I recognise my role in enhancing these parts of a woman’s life.
- Nobody should face childbirth unprepared, regardless of the place of birth. I believe that adequate prenatal care is essential and that there must be an equal regard for the emotional and physical aspects of birth. This is why my midwifery philosophies are holistic.
- Ideally prenatal classes include: the physiology of birth, the emotional aspects of pregnancy and birth, nutrition, self-help techniques for labour, drugs (advantages and disadvantages), pregnancy complications, breastfeeding, newborn care, contraception and parenting.
- Expectant mums and dads will have individual expectations of birth and parenthood. The prenatal classes aim to prepare parents with the possibility that their outcome could be different from their expectations. Counselling is available in order to help parents to come to terms with an unexpected outcome.
- Client satisfaction is really important. All my prenatal education programs undergo constant evaluation to make sure that the classes reflect the needs of my clients.
- Every woman should be able to choose a birth environment appropriate to her needs.
- A labouring woman should have her chosen companions with her during labour. This is because they provide emotional and physical support as well as continuity of the special relationship she has with them. Indeed, my midwifery philosophies acknowledge the whole family unit.
- I make every effort to help the labouring woman to assume whatever position she needs for her own comfort. Additionally, it is important that birth should take place in the most physiologically advantageous position for the woman.
- I discourage interference with the family unit in the first few hours after birth in order to help with effective bonding.
- Responsible homebirth is a viable alternative to hospital birth for women of low risk. The decision about homebirth must rest with the parents, guided by the midwife and/or doctor providing care. I offer support for parents who have chosen this option and my midwifery philosophies reflect this.
- Breastfeeding is the optimum method of feeding and everything should be done to encourage women to breastfeed their babies. If, for whatever reason, bottle feeding is the choice of the woman, then she too needs support for that decision.
- It’s important for new parents to receive ongoing support after the birth of a baby. Indeed, this is of great value to many couples.