Did you know? Creating personalized birth plans has been a staple of Garrison Women’s Health since our inception in 1962. We are passionate about educating mothers-to-be on their options. Every woman’s desired birth experience is different, so it makes sense that there should be different types of caregivers, too, who can suit individual wants and needs. A midwife is one of these options.
A Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM) is a healthcare professional who has a) graduated from a nurse-midwifery education program (nursing plus training in obstetrics, gynecology, and midwifery); and b) passed a national certification examination to receive the accreditation. This is just one of many types of midwives. Midwives have been practicing in the United States for almost 90 years. That’s before our parents and some of our grandparents were born!
Depending on your preferred birth plan, a midwife can be a suitable choice for a number of reasons.
A natural birthing process
The word midwife literally means "with woman." A midwife’s approach focuses on nurturing and empowering women to be in control of their pregnancy journey. Midwives believe in the natural process of pregnancy, labor, and birth. While not averse to pain medication, they typically recommend other pain management techniques such as giving birth in a bath or encouraging an expectant mother to breathe deeply as a relaxation measure. Provided there are no complications, most women who choose to labor with midwives are more likely to have a natural vaginal birth.
A holistic approach to women's health
Midwives are wonderful listeners and keep a watchful eye on mothers-to-be during the labor and delivery process, as well as during prenatal and postpartum care. Once your bundle of joy is born, a midwife can help with breastfeeding, provide emotional support to combat any new-mom jitters, and be there to lean on if needed.
A midwife’s expertise reaches far beyond pregnancy, also specializing in:
- Family growth planning
- Gynecological examinations
- Prenatal care
- One-on-one discussions of the physical and emotional changes a woman endures when pregnant
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