Choosing a Midwife: Important Considerations

About 8% of women in the United States choose to have a midwife attending the birth of their child. But midwifery is growing in popularity — in part because midwives prioritize personalization and bodily autonomy during pregnancy, labor, and delivery.

At OB-GYN Associates of Marietta, in Marietta and Woodstock, Georgia, we have a unique model of care. Along with a staff of obstetricians, we also have a team of certified nurse-midwives, and we’re proud to give women options when it comes to pregnancy and the birth of their children.

Finding the right people to have by your side as you bring your newborn into the world is an important task. If you’re interested in having a midwife, let us help you make your decision with these considerations.

Talk to your doctor

When you find out you’re pregnant, your first step should be scheduling a prenatal appointment with your OB/GYN. Your first prenatal appointment takes place around your eighth week of pregnancy, and it’s an important way to establish care for the duration of your pregnancy.

Your doctor evaluates your health and estimates your due date at your first appointment. If you’re curious about midwife care, ask your doctor. Most women with low-risk pregnancies can safely use midwifery, but 6-8% of pregnancies are considered high risk.

Pregnancies could be considered at a high risk if they involve multiples (twins, triplets, etc.) or the mother has a preexisting health condition like diabetes. If your doctor identifies your pregnancy as high-risk, you may not be able to use a midwife because they can’t use medical interventions that may be necessary if complications arise.

Consider your birth plan

It’s impossible to plan exactly what will happen during labor and delivery, but developing a birth plan gives you control over the experience. Many women feel comfortable delivering in a hospital setting with medical interventions like epidural injections, but it’s not your only option.

Midwives work with women wherever they feel comfortable, whether it’s in a hospital, birthing center, or even at home. If you’re interested in delivering outside a hospital setting, a midwife could be a good choice for you.

Midwives prioritize birth as a natural process. One of the biggest reasons why women choose the care of a midwife is that they want to have a natural, vaginal birth with minimal intervention. 

Rather than relying on pain medication or instruments like forceps or vacuums to aid in birth, your midwife coaches you through labor. They’re trained in alternative pain management techniques, and women who use midwives for delivery may be less likely to need cesarean section delivery.

Find a certified midwife

Midwives aren’t doctors, but they are highly trained medical professionals. If you want to use a midwife during your pregnancy, it’s important to find one that’s certified or licensed in your state.

At OB-GYN Associates of Marietta, our midwife team is staffed by state- and national-certified nurse-midwives. Each of our midwives is a registered nurse (RN) who has continued their education by completing a certification program accredited by the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM).

Choosing a certified midwife means you’re trusting a medical professional who is trained in pregnancy, labor, and delivery. Your midwife works with you to prepare for birth, and stands by your side as an advocate for you and your child during labor and delivery.

To find out more about the benefits of having a midwife, schedule an appointment with our team at OB-GYN Associates of Marietta. Contact us online or call the office nearest you.

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