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Birth Science

20 February 2024

What things does my uterus need to work in labour?

 

I’m a big believer that knowledge is power and when it comes to understanding how birth works – one of the best things you can learn is about the uterus.. after all.. its the star of the show!

When we are in labour, our uterus (or often called the womb) the muscles need to open up in order for us to give birth to our babies.

That’s what our contractions are for. They are opening the body and supporting your baby to move further down into the birth canal and that’s why I always say that they are a good thing – because it means that you are one step closer to meeting your baby.

During birth, there are a few ways that we can support the process by helping our uterus muscles out.

Just like all other muscles in the body – they need things to help them going and if you imagine doing a marathon (which maybe people will say labour is like – I’ve never done a marathon but I get the comparison) its important to try go in as prepared as you can.

Here’s five of my top tips for supporting your uterus in labour

Hydration

Just like other muscles that work really hard… Pre prepare and ask your birth partner to keep toping you up (a straw is great for this!)

Think coconut water, infused fruit waters, honey or good old water itself.

Oxygen

This is one of the reasons our breath is so important. The better we breathe the better our muscles can function. Take a deep breath in through the nose and back out through the mouth – all of this lovely goodness will flow through your body and down to your uterus muscles.

Oxytocin

The birthing hormone. And my absolute favourite topic when it comes to birth and hypnobirthing!

This hormone is so important for birth… an artificial one is often used in induction (syntocinon. It helps contract the uterus. It loves privacy and quieter, darker spaces.

Fuel

Eating isn’t high on our agenda often whilst birthing. Small and easy foods every now and again can help to keep us going.

Think honey, nuts, dates, frozen grapes or even a cube of your favourite chocolate.

An empty bladder

This really helps to give our baby more room to move further down into the birthing canal. Ask those supporting you to remind you to go!

Have a think how you’d like to incorporate these little tips into your birth preferences, chat with your partner or your midwife and pop a plan in place.

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