Friday, September 25, 2009

Eating and Drinking and Laboring

I'm a little late in discovering ACOG's press release "granting" women the right to now have fluids during labor. My first thought was:
Oh, thank you, Massa!
...but then I remembered what year it was and began to wonder what year ACOG is functioning in. Not so long before this, ACOG also raised their labor induction guidelines to no earlier than 39 weeks. I wasn't sure if I should be pleased that maybe they have started to practice real evidenced-based care, or upset that it has taken decades to get here.

Anyway, their previous reason for food and drink restriction was operating on the premise that any given woman may need to undergo a C-section, and thus would be at risk for aspiration under anesthesia. However, what, exactly do surgeons do when people present in the emergency room with full guts and they need to go under?

From their release:
"As for the continued restriction on food, the reality is that eating is the last thing most women are going to want to do since nausea and vomiting during labor is quite common."
From my release,

I'm sorry, but one of the FIRST things I wanted to do when my contractions started kicking in, was EAT. In fact, I begged the nurse for food. I couldn't even get crackers. But when I started to hold my breath in resistance, gelatin cubes appeared! And, I was spoon fed!

And yes, I threw up every last bit of it--attributable to the Stadol I had for pain relief; but I did not regret the food one bit. Choice, that's all we're asking for.

Please understand that these policies are based on what's in the best interest of the hospitals and insurance companies--not mothers and babies. If you know what's best for you, is in opposition to hospital policy, utilize peaceful resistance, or, stay out of the hospital.

Women who birth with home birth midwives have been eating and drinking and laboring since forever. What job can you perform while abstaining from food and drink and only dousing your mouth with ice chips. What year are you laboring in?