So what are we talking about? Monitoring is a good example:
One mother of three told me “I didn’t know you could have a baby without an IV!” Are you aware that in a hospital, you can still have a baby without being attached to an IV pole? Heparin locks (usually called “hep lock”) is an alternative that allows the medical staff to know they have ready access to a vein in an emergency, but doesn’t keep the mom-to-be tethered to a pole. You might not know about research that suggests moms in labor should be allowed clear foods up to an in some cases into transition, or that the shower can be very effective as pain relief.
With so much going on during childbirth, the time to learn about these options is well in advance. Good childbirth classes and books are a great place to start. Be wary of internet information and always verify your sources. A doula is another great way to learn about your choices.
Don’t miss out on a better birth experience because you don’t know what your options are. Remember, knowing is half the battle! More about monitoring here.