Home Birth vs. Hospital Birth

hospital birth

There are many different opinions and sides to this subject; I think we should all just agree that everyone is looking for the best pregnancy experience they can get, and that means different things to different people. Every woman should have the opportunity to choose what kind of delivery they would like, but those facing complicated or high risk pregnancies should take into consideration the health and safety of herself and her unborn child and think about additional services that may be needed. There are pros and cons to both sides, and even the pros and cons are relative, depending on which side of the fence you sit.

When it comes to hospital births, they are more controlled. The environment is pretty sterile although delivery of a baby is considered to be a “clean” procedure. 

When it comes to hospital births, they are more controlled. The environment is pretty sterile, although delivery of a baby is considered to be a “clean” procedure. When you are admitted to the hospital for labor, whether it is induced or natural timing, intravenous IV access is obtained, and you are placed on fetal monitors and a transducer that monitors your contractions.

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You are usually confined to a bed, especially if the membrane of your amniotic sack has been ruptured (this can happen naturally or the doctor can “break your water” with an amniotic hook), and you are then limited to ice chips. Your food and fluid intake is limited, in case you have to have a Cesarean Section or another emergency that would require anesthesia.

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If you would like, pain medication is readily available in two forms. The first is Nubain, a short acting narcotic that lessens pain perception and makes the pain more tolerable. Second is a longer acting epidural that is administered by an anesthesiologist through the space between the spinal cord and the outer membranes, this space being called the epidural space. The epidural, when working properly, dulls the sensations from your stomach to your legs or feet. These are all pretty standard features that come with the hospital.

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Another thing that seem to be standard is the administration of Pitocen, which is a medication that is started to help your contractions become strong and regular. Pitocen is made to simulate Oxytocin, which is a hormone that causes muscles to contract in the uterus. The use of this medication is one of the causes of debate. Sure, if a woman needs help getting contractions started, a little help is wonderful, but rarely in the hospital setting is the need for this medication assessed. It seems to be more about time management, and that is one of the problems with hospital births (in my opinion). Instead of letting the birth happen naturally, they want to speed up the process or make it happen at a desirable time for the doctor or mother.

What do you think?

Home Birth vs. Hospital Birth

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64 comments

  1. Profile photo of KWRAY KWRAY says:

    I strongly suggest every women who is a mother, expecting, or planning on becoming a mother watch "The business of being born" (and the 2nd part "More business on being born") and "Pregnant in America." I’ll admit they are generally one sided but there is a lot of valuable information in these documentaries (both are on instant play on Netflix). I’m not here to be preachy one way or the other. I will say that there needs to be less fear of birth. Of course, with your first, you don’t know what to expect and that can be rattling for a first time mommy. I read Hypnobirthing: The Mongan method. I didn’t dig the wolel hypnosis part of it but there are a lot of good facts and information to help you overcome any anxiety and just let your body do what it’s made to do. Make sure your birthing partner is on the same page with you because they help remind you of your capabilities.

    I delivered both of my children in hospital and both were without any sort of pain killers or inducement. I get both sides. I would TOTALLY have my baby at home with a midwife but the way my inusrance is set up it’s cheapr to deliver in a hospital and with finances what they are I have to do what’s best for the family. My mom delivered 7 of her 8 children without any medical assistance and never made it seem like a horrible experience. If my mom take it in stride then I decided I could, too. Two of my sisters opted for epidurals and that’s what works for them and that makes them happy.

  2. img having a hospital birth if im not stranded somewhere where i cant get there! lol, i like the hospital.

  3. Profile photo of Valerie Valerie says:

    Hospital Birth, better safe than sorry!

  4. Profile photo of Robbi Robbi says:

    This will be our first child and we are planning a home birth. I would highly recommend doing research into ‘routine’ hospital procedures and interventions so that if you do birth at a hospital you can really give informed consent..and don’t let the doctors scare or bully you into what they thing needs to happen. Ask questions and ask for the risk of each procedure before you allow it. Homebirth isn’t for everyone, but every procedure that is done *will* home some effect on your baby.

  5. Profile photo of Jeanetta Jeanetta says:

    Hospital birth because this is my child.

  6. Profile photo of Julie Julie says:

    This is my first child and I am going to have her at the hospital. I am already afraid. I think I would be terrified at home.

  7. Profile photo of Shyra Shyra says:

    It’s my first birth so I think I would rather the comfort of a hospital just in case anything were to happen

  8. Profile photo of lisa_iowa lisa_iowa says:

    Home birth is just as safe (if not safer) than hospital births when accompanied by a competent midwife who carries necessary medical supplies like O2 and other things.

    Homebirth is NOT the same as having an unassisted birth. Once a mom gets past the media hype and fear mongering and actually talks to women who have delivered at home, or who attend homebirths, they find out how safe and unscary it really is.

  9. Profile photo of Rose Rose says:

    What bothers me about giving birth in a hospital is all the fear mongering I hear about. The constant stream of "don’t you want what’s best for you baby?". Of course I do! I also know that what’s best for my baby is for me to listen to my body. Women have been doing it for a very long time. Why now does my ability to have a baby require that I lay on my back (which is the best position for a doctor to see not for a women to give birth as it narrows the birthing canal) and have my labor induced because I’m on a time schedule. It’s silly to think that I should hurry things along when my body and my baby aren’t ready to give birth yet. I want the option to stand. I want the option to walk and to change positions. To be forced to lay on my back sounds more like torture than "what is best for the baby".

  10. Profile photo of Hope Hope says:

    I want a natural water birth also. I’d either have to do it at home though or drive 45 min to a nearby hospital though because the nearest hospital will not perform water births.

  11. Profile photo of Hope Hope says:

    Midwives also know what they are doing. They have been trained to deliver babies. You can also have a Dr. at your home when you give birth.

  12. Profile photo of lhunter lhunter says:

    I’d rather deliver my child in a hospital because they know what ythey are doing and its more sterile

  13. Profile photo of Rosie2day Rosie2day says:

    I am doing a home birth with a birthing tub and midwife. My first was induced. My second child was born at home with no assistance because I have a high pain tolerance and didn’t know it. The third my DH took a shower!! because he did not believe I was in labor, and we ended up making a 45 min trip in about 25-30 mins. I am staying home with this one and making everyone come to me!
    I am also very low risk, never had any problems with any pregnancy or labor.

  14. Profile photo of Kristin Kristin says:

    I would love to do a home birth; but, wth all the issues I have had with my previous two kiddos it would not be wise of me. With my son I had gallbladder attacks and ended up having it removed a couple months after he was born and the procedure and medication I had to take messed up my lactation schedule big time and I ended up having to give him formula because I wasn’t producing enough anymore to keep up with his immense appetite. With my daughter I had super low blood sugar (hypoglycemia- opposite of diabetes) and I hemmorhaged really bad after she was born. She had the cord wrapped once around her neck which is very fixable and didn’t harm her but she aslo had her cord wrapped around her leg three times and ended up ripping the planecta out of me instead of it coming loose naturally and that’s what caused the horrible tear. I have dreamed of having a home birth since I was a kid but I don’t think it will happen :( Maybe one day I will be able to do something super special. So far all I got is no meds at all during both births not even an epidural.

    Well good luck to all the moms out there and remember just because I had a couple issues it doesn’t mean you will. Every birth and pregnancy is different and should be embraced in all aspects. Learn from one to the other and it will help alleviate other things you wished to change in previous circumstances and may show you a different way of dealing with your hoices. Love to everyone!!!!

  15. Profile photo of torresh torresh says:

    OMG so scary I would not be able to do a home birth! I give all those moms out there props for being able to do so.

  16. Profile photo of dschlitter dschlitter says:

    My last delivery was a little scary. I had a perfectly normal pregnancy, but, my daughters heart rate kept dropping during delivery and she was very pale when she came out. Lots of medical pesonnel came rushing in to take care of her. Luckily, everything ended up okay. She is now a very healthy 4 year old. This delivery will be in a hospital because I know things can happen and I want the very best medical team in place just in case.

  17. I plan to labor at home for as long as possible with my husband and doula for support and then when I feel the time is right go to the hospital and continue with the plan of a natural childbirth in the hospital since we aren’t able to do an at home birth or water birth in the hospital.

  18. Profile photo of dforonda07 dforonda07 says:

    A* baby not I baby

  19. Profile photo of dforonda07 dforonda07 says:

    i think i’m going to do a home birth in the water….. my husband worked at the hospital for about 6 years, and they are one of the germiest places ever…… and just recently where i live, i baby was born and went home and developed the flesh eating disease, already lost one of it’s legs due to it………

  20. Profile photo of baby baby says:

    i always try to be on the safe side with things so the hospital it is for me. although i know im not gonna be a fan of the epidural!

  21. I plan on going to the hospital just because you never know what you might need for the baby though i would never get pain medicine. It doesn’t hurt that bad and it’s def worth the pain after holding the lil baby in your arms.

  22. Profile photo of Ashley Ashley says:

    i don’t think i could do home delivery. i don’t want to have pain medication unless i really need it but not even having the option would stress me out. also what if something went wrong?!? thats my biggest fear

  23. Profile photo of Lacey Lacey says:

    I’m too much of a worrier to have a baby at home. Plus I NEED an epidural. You never know when you will have complications even with a normal healthy pregnancy. Best to be with specialists at the hospital for my baby’s sake.

  24. I have had friends that have had home births… but I think that I will plan on going to the hospital, just in case.

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