How does the midwifery model of care improve maternal health?
August 15, 2023
Is midwifery a common way to give birth today?
Well, there is an enormous presence of midwifery in Europe, while in the United States, midwifery is still growing. Based on a recent study published by one of the prominent journals in the USA, integrating midwifery into a state’s health care will improve the well-being of a mother and a baby.
If you are wondering who midwives are and how Aastrika Midwifery Centre, the pre-eminent midwifery centre in Bangalore, can help you during your pregnancy, read on.
Who is a midwife?
A professional midwife in India is a proficient, skilled, and specialised healthcare professional who undergoes rigorous post-graduate training for a duration of 18 months, specifically focusing on the intricacies and complexities of pregnancy, childbirth, and early child care. They possess expertise in supporting the regular progression of pregnancy, childbirth, and the post-childbirth stage.
These healthcare practitioners promote normal or physiologic birth by employing midwifery tools and techniques to provide comprehensive maternal support. These professionals are extensively trained to discern signs when things are not going well and adeptly manage all instances of obstetric emergencies. They ensure that medical interventions are used only when required and offer extensive support to mothers during birthing.
Why do we need a midwifery model of care?
Today’s millennial parents search for the best maternity hospital in Bangalore, especially for normal birthing, the moment they receive the wonderful news of having a baby. That is because today’s informed mothers understand the importance of choosing a trained and proficient healthcare provider like a midwife to support them through pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum.
In India, clinical decisions are often hospital-centric rather than mother-centric. Decisions about induction, augmentation of labour and episiotomy are enforced rather than offered to mothers in the present model of care. A mother’s voice usually goes unheard or is disrespected. Many pregnant women go through medically non-indicated caesareans and episiotomies. As a result they often leave the hospital in pain, feeling slighted and insufficiently cared for.
Did you know the c-section rate in the private sector in Karnataka stands at 52.5%, according to NFHS5, while WHO recommends it should be between 10% and 15%? Caesareans lead to more challenging post-operative recovery and potential complications in subsequent pregnancies. Moreover, c-sections can have both short-term and long-term impacts on a child’s health, including an increased risk of respiratory and immune challenges compared to vaginal births.
That is why we must address this issue and ensure that mothers’ voices are heard. Let’s explore the possibilities.
How to make mothers’ voices heard?
To ensure mothers’ voices are heard, there is a pressing need for more evidence-based research-oriented maternity hospitals, like Aastrika Midwifery Centre, which follow a midwifery-based model of care. Here, mothers can experience transformative, joyful, and, above all, respectful birthing.
The advantage of midwifery care lies in its inherently mother-centric approach, prioritising the holistic well-being and autonomy of expectant mothers throughout childbirth. This approach emphasises empowering mothers to make informed decisions about their birthing experience, thus ensuring a more personalised and satisfying journey into motherhood.
Midwives’ contributions in other countries
In countries like the U.K., Netherlands, and Sweden, midwives provide the majority of maternity care and make mothers’ voices heard. While in the U.K., midwives are an integral part of the National Health Service (NHS) and are widely recognised for their expertise in guiding women through pregnancy and childbirth, in the Netherlands, midwives attend to the majority of low-risk pregnancies, emphasising a personalised and holistic approach to maternity care.
In the United States, midwives are gaining prominence as a preferred option for expectant mothers seeking a more natural and mother-centered childbirth experience. Their dedication to promoting maternal well-being and fostering a positive birthing environment has contributed to their growing significance in modern healthcare systems in these nations.
Now Indians can also experience evidence-based and research-oriented clinical care at midwifery-driven maternity centres like Aastrika Midwifery Centre. This is India’s first birthing centre that features sensory technology in the labour rooms with state-of-the-art infrastructure and an interdisciplinary clinical care team of experienced midwives, distinguished doctors, paediatricians, and proficient nurses.
If you are still wondering how midwives help mothers during labour, let us explore their vital contributions.
How do midwives help to-be mothers?
By now, the concept of a midwife should be clear to you. Just like a physician, a midwife is a healthcare provider who cares for a to-be mom throughout her pregnancy, labour, birth, and postpartum. These certified professionals support the birthing of babies in hospitals or birthing centres for low-risk pregnancies.
While preparing for the birth, expectant parents may discuss the interventions, medications, procedures, and labour positions with midwives as well as doctors. Parents are often more comfortable with certified midwives as they explain everything in detail, reduce stress, answer different medical queries, and address and accommodate their unique requests.
Midwives are guided by a philosophy that views childbirth as a normal part of life. They believe in holistic, individualised, personal, and woman-centred care, where women become co-facilitators of their own care.
The services provided by midwives at Aastrika Midwifery Centre
It is witnessed at Aastrika Midwifery Centre that women naturally tend to feel safe and protected when midwives are involved in their care. Women who have had multiple easy, normal births may benefit, but midwives are especially valued by first time mothers. The intimacy of a midwife is precious for a normal vaginal birth, just like a skilled surgeon and a sterile operating room is critical for a c-section. For a deeper understanding, you need to understand their services first.
In addition to assisting with childbirth, midwives provide a variety of services.
Midwives’ guidance on pregnancy and childbirth
Midwives at Aastrika Midwifery Centre offer prenatal care and immediate neonatal care. They also facilitate safe childbirth for low-risk and medium-risk to-be moms in a hospital.
A low-risk pregnancy is when a woman is typically in good health and has no underlying medical conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension. On the other hand, if a woman faces underlying medical conditions like diabetes or hypertension, it will be considered a medium-risk pregnancy as, most of the time, medication can manage all these situations.
Midwives offer breastfeeding guidance
We all know that breastfeeding is the optimal form of giving nutrition to infants and professional healthcare providers widely support that. Midwives at Aastrika Midwifery Centre play a vital role in assisting new moms in initiating and continuing breastfeeding. They acquire proper knowledge accompanied by positive attitudes toward breastfeeding during their training and certification.
Midwives provide comprehensive postpartum support
Postpartum care that emphasises continuity ensures that women receive the necessary support and reassurance after childbirth. Rest and adequate sleep are vital for expectant and new mothers as their bodies undergo significant changes during pregnancy and postpartum recovery. Midwives at Aastrika Midwifery Centre educate mothers on the importance of rest, provide advice on establishing healthy sleep routines for newborns, and support mothers in managing their sleep patterns as they care for their babies.
Midwives offer extensive wound care support
During childbirth, women may experience perineal tears or episiotomies, which require appropriate wound care to promote healing and prevent infections. Midwives are trained to assess and care for these wounds, ensuring that they are clean, dressed properly, and monitored for any signs of complications.
Midwives assist with diet and exercise plans
Proper nutrition and regular exercise are essential for the well-being of expectant and postnatal mothers. Midwives can provide guidance on healthy eating habits during pregnancy and breastfeeding, ensuring that mothers receive the necessary nutrients for their own health and the development of their babies. They may also suggest suitable exercises and physical activities that are safe during pregnancy and after childbirth, promoting overall fitness and well-being.
Midwives provide emotional care and support
Midwives at Aastrika Midwifery Centre offer crucial emotional support to both expectant and new mothers. They create a nurturing and empathetic environment, encouraging open communication and addressing any concerns or anxieties the mothers may have. Emotional well-being is closely related to physical health, and midwives play a vital role in promoting a positive and emotionally healthy experience for mothers during pregnancy, childbirth, and beyond.
Aastrika Midwifery Centre believes that women should be an integral part of the decision-making process at every stage of their pregnancy and birth. That is why our interdisciplinary clinical team provides adequate information to each mother and supports them throughout their journey. Many women prefer teams that include midwives, as they are great professionals for mother-centric care.
As discussed, the midwifery model of care offers a range of benefits, including improved maternal and neonatal outcomes, increased access to care, continuity of care, enhanced mother satisfaction, and reduced healthcare disparities. The best part is it supports a woman’s choice to give birth vaginally, which has several great benefits for both mother and child. By embracing these services and principles, healthcare systems can provide better care for expectant mothers and contribute to healthier communities, just like Aastrika Midwifery Centre.
If you are looking for top-notch mother-centric care provided by expert healthcare professionals, you must visit Aastrika Midwifery Centre once! Call us to book an appointment.