Expectant mothers in Staffordshire are being encouraged to stay healthy, active and upright during pregnancy.
The move follows the Better Births Initiative launched by the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) which is being supported by Stafford & Surrounds, Cannock Chase and South East Staffordshire & Seisdon Peninsula Clinical Commissioning Groups.
Being upright and active during labour and childbirth can be beneficial. Strong evidence indicates that it can help the baby arrive more quickly and help mum deal with pain.
Midwife Alexandra Birch, who is the Programme Lead for the Pan Staffordshire Maternity Transformation Programme said, “We want more women to become aware of the options that there are during childbirth. Many people still think that lying down is the best or only option.
“But there are lots of other positions that can involve being upright or being active and moving around. You can use a combination of these to help while you are in labour, and it’s best if expectant mothers are aware of this and think about what they may like to try.
“Being upright and active can shorten labour and reduces the incidence of caesarean section and the need for epidurals.”
Pregnant women are also being encouraged to remain as fit and healthy as possible.
Alex said: “Pregnant women don’t need a special diet, but they do need a healthy mixed diet to help get all the nutrients that they and their baby need. A healthy diet will provide you with the vitamins and minerals you need, but folic acid supplement is also helpful.”
She added: “Across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent we want to transform care for women, babies and families. It is important this is led by local women who use our services.”
“We are forming a system that ensures the needs of local women is met and brings together all professionals involved in the care of women and their babies.”
For some simple guidance on being active and upright during labour expectant mums can get more advice here
For advice on maintaining a healthy diet during pregnancy expectant mums can go here
More information on the Better Births Initiative launched by the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) www.betterbirths.rcm.org.uk