Survival outside the womb is possible (although not likely) as early as 22 weeks. Survival dramatically increases with continued gestation after this point. By 28 weeks, more than 90 percent of babies survive and by 34 weeks it's 99 percent.
Delaying birth after the onset of labour is difficult, but usually can be done for a few days. Delaying even for just a day or two can have large impacts on survival by allowing you to be moved to a more advanced hospital and giving time for steroid shots to improve the baby's lung function.
There is no evidence that bed rest will prevent pre-term labour.
MORE IDEAS FROM THEBOOK
Labour times vary a lot. Average dilation time is 1 to 2 centimetres an hour after active labour starts.
There are three major categories of labour problems: 1. dilation is too slow, or stops altogether; 2. baby gets stucks and 3. baby is facing the wrong way, making it harder to push
Best option: go into labour on your own.
Pre-birth foetal monitoring is a good idea, but beware of false positives. Fluid moitoring. Two easy ways to avoid false positives: 1. stay hidrated and 2. ask your doctor to measure the deepest vertical pocket rather than total fluid volume.
Non-stress test. Advice: just keep clapping (babies wake up and stay active)
No one has ever been pregnant forever.
The majority of babies arrive within a week on either side of the due date.
Cervical checks are predictive of coming labour (althoug not perfectly); ask about effacement in addition to dilation to get a more complete picture.
Broken water: Induce if labour doens't start on its own within 12 hours.
Eating and rindking during labour: Should be allowed, although probably most hospitals won't let you have them. Bring some Lucozade to keep your energy up.
Doula: Having a doule decreases the chances of a Caesarean and of using an epidural.
Continuos foetal monitoring: No evidence that is effective. If intermittent monitoring is available, do that.
Episiotomy: not a good idea.
We are apt to choose the path of safety instead of speaking about issues that worry us. We do not address the problems and fail to influence a change or produce results.
Risk the difficult conversations and speak up.
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