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EcoBirth for Baby

Posted Oct 08 2008 5:44pm

What is an environmentally friendly birth? One factor is the model of care used, whether one births in a hospital, birth center, or home, and whether one has a doctor or midwife. In the hospital, there are lots of people, devices, pharmaceuticals, instruments, technology, surgical procedures, and disposable items wrapped in plastic that can contribute to a lot of waste being generated in the birthing environment. A homebirth midwife will have less environmental impact, supporting you in your own home, and will reduce waste by reducing unnecessary procedures, interventions, and practices. 

But what about baby? What is the most environmentally friendly birth for baby? That would clearly be being born at home, because baby is immune to the germs in mother's home environment. In the womb, baby is encased in the pristine waters of the amniotic fluid. The baby in-utero is in a sterile environment. The amniotic fluid actually has anti-microbial and anti-bacterial properties to it - so don't worry about washing it off your baby right away after birth - it's good for the skin, as is vernix! During the birth the baby is inoculated with the mother's healthy bacteria through the passage through the birth canal and the drinking of colostrum from the initial breastfeeding.

Being born at home is safest for baby because mother and baby are safer from unfriendly germs in their home environment. In the hospital where all the sick people go, the newborn babies are exposed to many germs, including new strains of superbugs. Babies are also subjected to increasing numbers of cesearean section deliveries and antibiotics, bot which seriously hinder the child's ability to culture the essential healthy flora in their gut needed for lifelong health. These children are at a higher risk of developing allergies and asthma later down the road, as well as other chronic conditions, including ADHD and autism.

Birth at home is an eco-friendly birth for baby, because the home environment is friendly to baby - and mom!

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