• Definition

The Meaning and Value of Natural Birth

“Parents who have chosen Natural Birthing as those who look back at themselves, their surroundings, and go further by constantly contemplating how to live or what type of parents to be. That very process of contemplating is the reason and goal why we strive for Natural Birthing. To find the answers to their questions, the Mom, Dad, and Medical Staff all alike have chosen this path others would have avoided.”

_Head Doctor, Dr. Peter H. Chung

Curious about Natural Birthing

Many people often consider all births without C-Section to be natural births. However, there is a difference between vaginal delivery and natural childbirth. Academically, we would need more accurate justifications, but to help understanding we can first differentiate between birth and delivery.

The biggest difference is “Who is the subject of Childbirth?”

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Delivery is called <분만> in Korean and refers to the process of separating the baby from the mother’s body; within the context of a hospital, the definition focuses more about the doctor safely pulling the baby from the mother. In most modern hospitals throughout childbirth the subject of focus tends to be the doctor, but in Natural Birthing we place more emphasis on the “birth” aspect. Birth is called <출산> in Korean. Different from ‘delivery’ the focus isn’t on the medical staff or the doctor, but more so on the family; the mother and father make their own arrangements for the upcoming childbirth and through those arrangements the baby enters the world.

In essence, birth is “helping the baby come out by the method chosen by the baby at the time also chosen by the baby”, whereas Natural Birthing is the “peaceful method of having faith in the mom’s birthing instincts and the powers of a new life while fully supporting and waiting until the due time.

Why would you choose stirrups and a neonatal nursery over a familiar, comfortable environment similar to home. Childbirth isn’t pain or a disease we have to treat medically, but it is a unique ability gifted to women from God to welcome blessings.

Even for the life about to be born, it’s very first few moments are extremely important. The true meaning goes beyond the passive benefit of minimizing medical intervention, but Natural Birthing also ensures that the focus of the experience is mainly on the mother or child, and from that experience the mother and the child would live a healthier and more and natural life.

Why should I choose Natural Birthing

Happy and honest births lead to a thriving honest society. As one of the current trends, one of the most prevalent themes is well being, but the term ‘well-dying’ is also very popular. Then the question rises, so what should be done better than that?

Well birthing and Well being born.

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How do we make sure we nurture kids to the best of our ability. I heard that a healthy birth and baby are keys in establishing a clean home.

The mother and father who both experienced a peaceful and healthy birth reestablish their understanding of life from their realization of life from childbirth and relataionships. A baby who chose his method and time when to enter the world and spends his first hour with his mom, developing early deep bonds and relationship; this is the true goal of Natural Birthing.

When delivering babies at hospitals have become the social norm, it takes a lot of courage to consider Natural Birthing as one of your options. Therefore, instead of being confined to your own thoughts, talking to people who have gone through Natural Birthing or consulting facilities that can help, makes the decision making process easier.

What is the Most Important about Natural Birthing?

The current father of Natural Birthing, Grantly Dick-Read, often points out that the pain of childbirth, comes from tension, and tension from fear. In Natural Birthing or even in regular hospitals the most important task is getting rid of the fear. God designed our body and mind to conceive through love to have kids in good faith.

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The mother must place faith in her own childbearing abilities gifted to her by God and her child’s survival instincts to come out on itsown. Once she overcomes her fear, childbirth evolves from a time of fear to a time full of celebration and joy.

What are the different type of Natural Birthing?

In Korea we often consider water or a Leboyer Births as the two typical forms of natural birthing. Dr. Leboyer established a peaceful delivery method which includes dimming the lights, placing the newly born child in water, and then right onto the mother’s stomach without cutting the umbilical cord.

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Thanks to Dr. Michel Odent water birth has become quite well known over the years. In a water birth, the mother would immerse into the pool’s warm water (body temperature) and would experience an almost immediate pain relief and great improvement in contractions. As for the child, being born into an environment similar to that of the Amniotic Fluid is soothing and less stressing for the baby.

Technically speaking, Natural Birthing isn’t limited to different types of childbirth, it is a philosophy with many relevant values that facilitates peaceful childbirth.

For a true Natural Birthing the will and determination of the mother and family is extremely important but the waiting and the provided medical advice is also of equal importance.

We must have faith in the mother and the child, provided as much support needed to ensure that they are the focus throughout the period, and believe that medical assistance will be provided only in emergencies.

What are the Benefits to Natural Birthing?

First, the mother will see physical and psychological benefits

If anything, the recovery period for the mother will be significantly reduced. Because Natural Birthing avoids the use of medication and C-Sections except when necessary, mothers tend to go home with their babies on the day after birth.

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Despite many concerns, Natural Birthing also reduces the risk of Postpartum Stress Syndrome (PSS). This syndrome is a result of the stress from the short period following and including the day of birth; this stress physically translates into abnormalities in the circulatory system and accumulates into the stress syndrome. However, mothers who go through Natural Birthing give birth in a comfortable environment and therefore experience minimal stress levels and reduces any risk of PSS.

Also during natural labor and birth, the mother’s body secretes a ‘happy hormone’ called oxytocin which causes a rush of accomplishment and maternal love. For this reason, Natural Birthing also reduces the risk for the major social concern, postpartum depression.

Second, the largest benefit is to the baby. The baby can enter the world into a peaceful environment.

In Dr. Leboyer’s book, “Birth without Violence”, he pointed that within the delivery room all the commotion, blinding lights, and rushed medical interventions can be seen as violence in the baby’s perspective. In an ordinary hospital delivery, the baby prepares to enter the world for 10 months in his mother’s womb and is suddenly placed in a frightening environment full of sounds and lights.

Sometimes, the baby even comes out before he is fully prepared. Also, immediately after birth, the babies are usually sent away to the nursery for various tests and even after the tests, they remain separated from their mothers. All of these protocols exist because of the notion that babies are in constant danger, and the hospital is trying to minimize any harms. However on the contrary, the baby would view all of these tests and time spent alone as acts of violence. Due to these reasons, the environment of Natural Birthing is much more comfortable and safe like home.

The baby is peacefully born in a calm, dim-light area receiving constant support and encouragement from everyone around, and usually after birth the baby is embraced by the mother to experience the love and bond the baby was receiving back in the womb. Most babies when embraced don’t cry out as if in pain, but enjoy the moment of peace and listen in on the conversations their mothers and fathers are having just as they did back in the womb.

In addition, as the baby receives any massage from either parent, the natural skin to skin contact helps brain development and emotional stability. Even if the baby is born through C-Section with medical assistance, forming an early bond with love and affection is definitely possible. If the baby needs to be transferred to a larger hospital, it is highly recommended to hold the baby while waiting and start developing a bond as early as possible. A natural and peaceful birth and spending the first moments of the baby’s life embraced by his parents are the best gifts a parent can give to their newborn.

Third, the husband changes and the family is restored.

As the husband watches his wife undergo the prenatal preparations, labor, and childbirth, he starts to realize that he isn’t a bystander but one of the main character in part of the pregnancy and childbirth. The father is reborn with the baby. These two benefits, that the baby is not separated from his mother and that the family is reborn, are the greatest benefits, values, and ultimate purpose of Natural Birthing. A safe stable society is reflected from a safe and stable family.

Nature-centered Birth Lab

Nature Centered Birth Lab

  • Purpose

    Medi Flower has established and is operating an affiliated research institute to conduct more systematic and evidence-based research so that the value and spirit of our Nature Centered Birthing can be based on a proper foundation in Korea.

  • Research Project

    1. Study on maternal care and natural birthing in Korea 2. Statistical birth data analysis on natural birthing in Korea 3. Improving on Patient Response Guide