Five Top Trends in St. Vincent Healthcare’s Labor and Delivery Department in Billings
September is the third most popular month for new babies to arrive in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2013, the most recent year for which statistics are available, there were 374,711 born in September.
September is trumped only by August in the No. 1 spot and July in the No. 2 position.
In recognition of Labor Day and all the women who have been in labor -- or are about to be -- Vicki Birkeland, director of nursing for Women’s and Children’s Service at St. Vincent Healthcare, identified the top five trends in the hospital's labor and delivery department.
This is the natural practice in which a new baby is welcomed into the world during the first hours after birth by placing the newborn on the mother's chest immediately after birth, including in the operating room for those who have cesarean sections. The newborn makes the transition from fetal to newborn life with greater respiratory, temperature and glucose stability and significantly less crying the stress. Mothers who hold their newborns skin-to-skin after birth have increased maternal behaviors, show more confidence in caring for their babies and breastfeed for a longer duration.
There are best practices in place that support increased breastfeeding initiation and duration. We give all mothers the information, confidence, and skills necessary to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies. We place the emphasis on family-centered care, quality family time with their newborn and encourage families to keep their newborns with them in their hospital room.
Healthy babies are worth the wait. There are significant decreased numbers of elective inductions before 39 weeks for non-medical reasons. This is very positive because it gives babies the time they need to grow, particularly the lungs and the brain; these organs need the full time in the womb to develop. The 40 weeks allows the baby to gain more weight in the womb. Babies born at full term have healthier weights and have an easier time staying warm, sucking, swallowing, and staying awake long enough to eat after they are born.
This is an electronic fetal monitor without wires. It eliminates many of the problems associated with mobility and positioning and allows laboring mothers more mobility and more flexibility while monitoring contractions and the well-being of the fetus. Our telemetry units are safe to use in water.
Tools like birthing balls can help expand the pelvis and re-position the baby are more commonly used today. We encourage women in labor to move around more. Different laboring and birthing positions can make labor faster, easier, less painful and can help avoid unnecessary interventions and complications. Mothers that take the time to learn about their options have a better sense of control and help them not feel completely overwhelmed.