Midwifery Today Articles

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The Third Stage of Labor

The third stage of labor is the period following expulsion of the baby (second stage) via the birth canal. It usually takes approximately 5–30 minutes until the placenta and membranes are expelled. After this, lochia and lactation commence.

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The Future of Lullabies

This is an obligatory topic for students of human nature who understand Homo as a primate endowed of the capacity to develop sophisticated ways to communicate.…

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Considerations for a Prenatal Detection Tool for Vulnerable Pregnant Women

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in Midwifery Today, Issue 132, Winter 2019.Join Midwifery Today Website Membership Vulnerability during pregnancy has harmful consequences for the child in the first years of life. There are various initiatives in Flanders, and abroad, to more efficiently identify and support vulnerable pregnancies. Nevertheless, there are still many possibilities in… Read more…. Considerations for a Prenatal Detection Tool for Vulnerable Pregnant Women

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Do We Need Midwives?

This question was the title of a book intended for the British public (Odent 2017). In the United Kingdom, everybody is familiar with the term midwife. Traditionally, midwives were considered vital and respectable persons. There is even a Royal College of Midwives.

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Saving Women’s Lives in Uganda

The death of childbearing women is a challenge to health workers worldwide. Why are pregnant and postpartum women so vulnerable to death?

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Rose and Saffira’s Birth

Birth is not solely the journey of the physical body, of a baby and a mother, but rather an entire constellation changing shape as a new soul emerges from water to land. The process of birth encompasses the whole universe and mystery of life—it means surrendering everything that one knows, accepting what reveals itself in the moment, and merging into the unbounded life beyond body and mind.

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A Midwife and Her Wheels

If you say “Just take an Uber!” or “Call Lyft,” to most people in this country, they not only know what you are talking about, but how to do it. Me? I haven’t a clue. I haven’t taken public transportation—not a taxi, not a bus, not the “T” (I live in Boston)—in 30 years.

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Integrating Maternity Care in China

The Modern Maternity Service System (MMSS) provides classroom training and face-to-face training in many hospitals across China. We have made many wonderful changes toward delivering respectful woman-, baby-, and family-centered care that supports the normal physiology of childbirth.

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The Journey of International Midwifery

Midwifery Today has been trying to influence birth for the better throughout the world since our first issue came out in 1987. It took us a long time from idea to publication: to get the first one done, we started a full year before. We had a column called Working Abroad in the first issue and then began to receive contributions from other countries. Henny Ligtermoet, from Australia, wrote “My Mother was an Elderly Primagravida.” She talked about how if she were born today (then 1987) the OB would put fear in her mother, but since she was born at home in 1921 that did not happen. International issues and ideas have been a great journey and I have enjoyed it immensely!  Read more…. The Journey of International Midwifery

Birth in France: The Maisons de Naissance Experimental Project and the Horizon of Homebirth

The “alternative” movement around birthing options is beginning to blossom in France—more rapidly in the last few years. Although birth centers were nonexistent before, a few mothers seeking natural births have managed to have them at home with sage femmes (literally, wise women) who support non-medicalized births. However, this option is being threatened as fewer sage femmes are willing to attend homebirths due to the obstacles found in their practice. Only recently have birth centers or birth homes become a new option for mothers. This is a good alternative for women who can’t find an active homebirth midwife in their area, or who don’t want to birth at home or in a highly medicalized environment—which is the case for the great majority of hospitals in France. In 2016, nine maisons de naissance received a green light to function on an “experimental title.” At the same time, the unavailability of homebirth midwives has propelled some couples to plan unassisted births.

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