A recent study in Australia points out that the increasing number of caesarean births are not a result of last-minute complications alone but also the mother’s own choice over natural birth. According to the survey many well-off women consider natural births to be distasteful and unsafe.
The survey published in the Midwifery journal asked 210 women about their child birth options and found that most thought that natural birth was undignified, and were also fearful about the process. The survey said that the moms had a ‘distrust of the body’s ability to undertake labour and safely birth a baby’.
Although evidence points out that C-section are more risky than natural birth, one in three Australian women opted for the operation and experts believe that the increasing numbers is because of the mother’s decision to avoid natural birth. International survey also showed that 6-15 percent of women would prefer to have a caesarean.
14 of the 210 women said that they were ‘mortified’ about giving birth, and considered it a ‘loss of dignity’ and wanted a ‘perfectly shaped body’.
Most women who were upper income professionals with private obstetricians wished for a ‘perfectly orchestrated birth” which was “comfortable” and had a “high level of support.”
Dr Guy Skinner who is an obstetrician at Epworth Freemasons, said that some women did ask for caesarean because of their negative experience like sexual assault or health concerns. There were others who believed that vaginal births were more apt for lower classes of women. He also said that one-third of women were “talked out of it” and he did not support the provision of caesarean on demand.
Dr Penelope Sheehan, of the Royal Women’s Hospital said that caesarean sections were not performed on demand.
She clarified, “If you dig down there’s usually a significant pathology, and you have to address that rather than just agree to a Caesar.”
Amra Taylor a mother who gave birth via emergency caesarean because her daughter was in the breech position says,
“The whole labour scenario scared me, but I did want a natural birth and we kept hoping she would turn. But it’s not always possible and in the end the most important thing is not the birth, but having a healthy baby. Women can’t win – I thought some older women still judged me for having a caesar even though it wasn’t my choice.”
– Atula, Staff Writer
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