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Vaginal Birth

 
 
     
 
 

 
 
Other topics: Obstetrics and Gynaecology
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 Fallopian Tube Catheterization - Recanalization  
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 Health Problems in Pregnancy  
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 Pelvic Inflammatory Disease - PID  
 Pelvic Support Problems in Women  
 Placenta Previa  
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 Preconception Care  
 Pregnancy  
 Pregnancy - First Trimester - What to Expect  
 Pregnancy - Second Trimester - What to Expect  
 Pregnancy -Third Trimester - What to Expect  
 Pregnancy and Medicines  
 Pregnancy and Substance Abuse  
 Premature Ovarian Failure - POF  
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 Prenatal Care  
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 Preterm Labor  
 Preventing Neural Tube Defects  
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 Stillbirth  
 Taking Care of Yourself During Your First Trimester of Pregnancy  
 Taking Care of Yourself During Your Second Trimester of Pregnancy  
 Taking Care of Yourself During Your Third Trimester of Pregnancy  
 Transvaginal Tape Bladder Sling Surgery  
 Tubal Sterilization  
 Twin Gestation  
 Uterine Diseases  
 Uterine Fibroids  
 Vaginal Birth Postpartum Care  
 Vaginal Bleeding  
 Vaginal Diseases  
 Vulvar Disorders  
 What To Do When Your Baby Cries  
 Women's Health  
 Women's Health Checkup  
 
Keywords

Childbirth, labor, pregnancy, C-section, Cesarean section, episiotomy, breaking the water, contraction, Uterus, cervix, dilation, effacement, uterine contraction, placenta, umbilical cord, birth canal, epidural block

Overview *

When you are ready to have your baby, you'll go through labor. Contractions let you know labor is starting. When contractions are five minutes apart, your body is ready to push the baby out.

During the first stage of labor, your cervix slowly opens, or dilates, to about 4 inches wide. At the same time, it becomes thinner. This is called effacement. You shouldn't push until your uterus is fully effaced and dilated. When it is, the baby delivery stage starts. Crowning is when your baby's scalp comes into view. Shortly afterward, your baby is born. The placenta that nourished the baby follows.

Mothers and babies are monitored closely during labor. Most women are healthy enough to have a baby through normal vaginal delivery, meaning that the baby comes down the birth canal without surgery. If there are complications, the baby may need to be delivered surgically by a Cesarean section.

 
 

In-Depth

Introduction | Anatomy
Pregnancy | Labor
Pain Control | Risks
Cesarean Section | After Delivery
Summary

 
 

Multimedia

This patient education program explains vaginal birth. It discusses the three stages of labor and delivery, possible risks, and what to expect after giving birth.

This button allows you to read and print an illustrated handout This button starts a multimedia program with interactive questions

This button allows you to read and print an illustrated handout

This button starts a multimedia program with interactive questions

This button allows you to read and print an illustrated handout.

This button starts a multimedia program with interactive questions.

   
This button starts an interactive quiz This button plays a self-running presentation

This button starts an interactive quiz

This button plays a self-running presentation

This button starts an interactive quiz.


This button plays a self-running presentation.


Last reviewed: 8/7/2007

 
     
 

.Selected topic overviews were adapted from Medlineplus, the National Library of Medicine *

 
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