I have come to learn that there are two kinds of people when it comes to midwifery. Those who understand its purpose and benefits, and the rest of us who are in the dark about what exactly is a midwife. Until recently, I was in the later category. However, after having the chance to speak with a midwife about the practice I find myself singing its praises. At the end of the day, the bottom line is that expecting moms should have a birth plan that suits their needs, and midwifery fills in the gap for many moms.
10 Reasons To Choose A Midwife
Relationship Based – More than anything else, Cathy stressed that midwifery is relationship based. As nurses, midwives look at patients as a whole person not just a clinical diagnosis. The are able to treat patients mind, body and spirit in a holistic manner as well as any medical needs. Looking at diet, stress levels and many other life factors as well as clinical problems allows midwives to help build mom up during her nine-month journey so she feels confident as a mom when baby arrives.
Nurses With Advanced Degrees – One of my misconceptions was that midwifes were helpers similar to dulas. While they are helpers, unlike dulas they are actually nurse midwives with an advanced Masters and nursing degree. They are medical nurses who practice midwifery assisting women in women well-care through delivery.
Full-scope Midwifery – Another thing I didn’t know about midwives is that they treat women for any gynecological needs, not just pregnancy related. So women who visit the Florida Women’s Center practice are able to see their midwife for all well-woman care long before and long after the birth of a child.
Can Prescribe Medications – Because midwives are nurses, they are licensed to prescribe medicine to their patients. Florida is the only state where midwives can not prescribe narcotics, but they can prescribe anything else needed by the patient.
More Present – While doctors are usually only on call for the last part of the birthing process, midwives are able to me more present with their patients tending to needs throughout labor, not just catching the baby. Although it is possible to have more than one patient at a time, most midwives remain with the patient as much as possible helping mom through the process.
Typically Women – Although men can be midwives, the practice is generally made up of female midwives. Cathy told me that patients often come to her because seeking care from a female practitioner.
Lower-Intervention Care – Midwives practice lower-intervention care, which means especially high-risk patients are often referred to doctors for specific clinical needs. At Florida Women’s Center there are doctors at the practice to assist with more complicated medical issues as needed. However, midwives do offer their patients epidurals when it is part of mom’s birth plan.
Hospital Deliveries – Admittedly, this is another misconception that I had – I thought midwives were mainly for home births. But Cathy told me that most midwives deliver babies in a hospital, and some at birthing centers. Only a small portion practice home deliveries.
C-Section – In the event a c-section is needed, a doctor is called in to perform the operation. But a midwife is able to stay with mom throughout the c-section tending to her needs and coaching her through the procedure.
Birth Plan – Midwives are not only accustom to following birth plans, but they are knowledgeable in helping women make birth plans. Midwifery believes that women should have control over their own birthing process, and midwives can help moms achieve this control. Florida Hospital Altamonte is especially trained to accommodate birth plans.
For more information about midwifery, Cathy recommends Midwife.org.
For women in the Central Florida area looking for a midwife, you can find Cathy and her team of 6 midwives at Florida Women’s Center Altamonte.