Fear of Childbirth and C-sections
Mom’s Fear of Childbirth Boosts Chances of C-section Delivery
by Rallie McAllister, MD, MPH
If you’re pregnant and you’re feeling a little scared about childbirth, you’re not alone. Giving birth is a big deal, and it’s hard to know what to expect if you’ve never done it before. For women who had difficult deliveries in the past, it’s only natural to experience a little trepidation about the next delivery.
The results of a new study* of nearly a thousand women reveal that a mom’s feelings about childbirth have a big impact on how her baby will come into the world. Scientists found that fear of childbirth is a predisposing factor for both emergency and elective cesarean sections, even after a woman has received counseling.
If you find that you’re feeling fearful about your upcoming delivery, there’s certainly no shame in that. Talk to your doctor or midwife, and make arrangements to see a counselor if at all possible, since there’s a good chance this will give you some peace of mind. If you do end up having a cesarean section, you’ll be in good company. Millions of moms have delivered millions of healthy, happy babies the same way.
*Gunilla Sydsjö, Adam Sydsjö, Christina Gunnervik, Marie Bladh, Ann Josefsson. Obstetric outcome for women who received individualized treatment for fear of childbirth during pregnancy. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, 2011; DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0412.2011.01242.x