September 2013 Moms

UO natural vs unmedicated

For some reason it bugs me when people say natural birth when they are talking about an unmedicated birth. Am I wrong to think or the only one that thinks that you can have pain meds and that the birthing process is still natural? Back in the day I'm sure at least some women took or used other types of pain relief techniques and I doubt it was considered any less natural.

I'm a ftm leaning towards an unmedicated birth but will play it by ear, for what it's worth.
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Re: UO natural vs unmedicated

  • I plan on going unmedicated as well, FTM, and I completely agree about the terminology. It makes it sound like getting an epi or other meds is a really negative thing or that med free is the 'right' way. I feel like whatever is best for mom and baby is what is right and it's a totally personal choice.

    But yes, that term just rubs me the wrong way too when talking about med free.
  • My opinion.

    Unmedicated birth = natural birth

    Medicated birth = medicated birth  

    No way is "better" than the other, but they are different to me. 

  • I tend to say medfree, but I don't think people who say "natural" mean anything against people who use epidurals, are induced, or have csections.
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  • image Loppy19:
    I tend to say medfree, but I don't think people who say "natural" mean anything against people who use epidurals, are induced, or have csections.

    yep. this. 

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  • image madeline10L:

    My opinion.

    Unmedicated birth = natural birth

    Medicated birth = medicated birth  

    No way is "better" than the other, but they are different to me. 

     

    This exactly.  Since medication isn't "natural", it's not a natural birth.  It's not a bash on those who choose medicated births, it just isn't natural.  There are pain relief things out there that are natural and have no medicinal ingredients in them or methods of coping with pain that are still natural.   

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  • I hate "natural birth" only because I had a c section and it feels like my birth was some how unnatural. I'm not sure what else to say though traditional birth?
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  • I believe once you have pain meds whether its the Demerol gravol or the epi or whatever is decided, it is then considered a Vaginal Birth and not natural birth because there is something intervening with the birth. Does not mean one method is better then the other ofcourse.
  • I don't think I've ever heard of a medicated birth being called an "unnatural birth" though...
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  • It's just that people have been saying "natural" to mean med-free for a long time. I don't think anyone means anything hurtful by it, but the terminology is becoming outdated. It is more sensitive and respectful to say med-free. 

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  • I don't think using medication is natural. If you choose to have a medicated vaginal birth, that is what it is IMO. If you are having a 'natural birth' and don't say with medication, I assume med free. You don't have meds in nature.
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  • image missmuffin87:
    It's just that people have been saying "natural" to mean med-free for a long time. I don't think anyone means anything hurtful by it, but the terminology is becoming outdated. It is more sensitive and respectful to say med-free. 

    Agreed.  

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  • image missmuffin87:
    It's just that people have been saying "natural" to mean medfree for a long time. I don't think anyone means anything hurtful by it, but the terminology is becoming outdated. It is more sensitive and respectful to say medfree.nbsp;


    I don't know why anyone would be offended by calling it what it is. If someone had a csection, like the PP, it does not mean her labor isn't valid, it just was not natural. It's like arguing with someone that skim milk is the same as whole milk. Both are milk, yes, but they are certainly not the same.
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  • image EMLYNNLERETTE:
    I don't think using medication is natural. If you choose to have a medicated vaginal birth, that is what it is IMO. If you are having a 'natural birth' and don't say with medication, I assume med free. You don't have meds in nature.

     This exactly!  


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  • I've just used vaginal birth or csection when referring to it. I think any women that is able to go through "medfree" is a trouper but I don't think getting an Epi or any kind of meds is not natural because in my case I wanted to go med free with my first but was unable to because I had group b strep and had to have pennicylan don't think I spelled that right, and ended up opting for an Epi but IMO I still went natural
  • I get where you are coming from. I find it interesting (but not hurtful) that natural has become equated with unmedicated. There isn't anything inherently natural about being in a hospital, IVs, fetal monitors, and a lot of other modern birth procedures, but somehow you can avail yourself of all of those things and still have a "natural" birth. The line seems to be drawn at medication. Would it be different if it were a drug found in nature? Can I get high and have a natural birth?

    Like I said, this isn't anything I find hurtful and I don't think (most) people mean it in a pejorative way, but it is intriguing to me.  

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  • image EMLYNNLERETTE:
    image missmuffin87:
    It's just that people have been saying "natural" to mean medfree for a long time. I don't think anyone means anything hurtful by it, but the terminology is becoming outdated. It is more sensitive and respectful to say medfree.nbsp;
    I don't know why anyone would be offended by calling it what it is. If someone had a csection, like the PP, it does not mean her labor isn't valid, it just was not natural. It's like arguing with someone that skim milk is the same as whole milk. Both are milk, yes, but they are certainly not the same.

    that totally makes sense, but I feel like because I've only had a med-free delivery I don't know what it's like to be on the other side, so it's not my place to tell someone else that her birth wasn't natural. It's all semantics, so I just try to ere on the side of caution. I certainly don't want to offend anyone or make them feel like their birth experience was any less just with my choice of words.


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  • image foxyroxy:

    Would it be different if it were a drug found in nature? Can I get high and have a natural birth?


    I couldn't care less about the terms and I certainly don't go around censoring what I say or worrying about how other people refer to it.

    I do, however, think this is the best idea ever maybe.  

  • When it all comes down to it, birth is birth.  The rest is just details.
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  • I don't think that anyone should feel irked or offended by the use of the term natural birth vs medicated. (I honestly don't like the term 'tradition' it almost implies that modern birth means to be medicated and have interventions). Naturally letting your body birth, naturally working with the pain of birth to deliver is natural.  When you add medications and interventions it is going against what your body is naturally doing. I wouldn't consider medicated birth natural, especially if you can't even feel labor. But that is just my personal opinion. It is not devaluing anyone's birth experience. What matters is we have a choice now in our birthing experiences! 

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  • image AshleyPT:
    image foxyroxy:

    Would it be different if it were a drug found in nature? Can I get high and have a natural birth?


    I couldn't care less about the terms and I certainly don't go around censoring what I say or worrying about how other people refer to it.

    I do, however, think this is the best idea ever maybe.  

     I highly doubt I'll go with an epi, but if this were an actual option? Hmmmm... 

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  • On the bump I tend to say med-free just to be clear (even though technically I mean pain med-free because someone who needs antibiotics or clotting agent, etc. still falls into my umbrella). IRL, people assume natural = vaginal.  After DD, people would ask me if I had her naturally and they meant "not a c-section".  I think they just didn't want to say "vaginal", lol.  I always clarified that I thankfully did not need a c-section, but I happily took the drugs.
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    I don't know if we even want to get into it from the philosophical side, but the nature/man-made dichotomy is a really problematic one anyway. 
  • image AshleyPT:
    image foxyroxy:

    Would it be different if it were a drug found in nature? Can I get high and have a natural birth?


    I couldn't care less about the terms and I certainly don't go around censoring what I say or worrying about how other people refer to it.

    I do, however, think this is the best idea ever maybe.  

    All I can think about is having a severe case of munchies between contractions.  My poor DH would be inundated with demands, lol. 

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  • image EMLYNNLERETTE:
    I don't think using medication is natural. If you choose to have a medicated vaginal birth, that is what it is IMO. If you are having a 'natural birth' and don't say with medication, I assume med free. You don't have meds in nature.


    There are TONS of "meds" in nature. Care to reword that last statement?

    Have you used a Doppler to hear the heart beat? Is that found in nature? Have you had an ultrasound? I haven't come across a ultrasound machine during my canoe trips recently. Meds however are found everywhere in nature. Think penicillin. It's was found in mold on bread. Think aspirin which is derived from Willow trees.

    Also I should specify that I'm not offended by the senantics it just rubs me the wrong way. The general impression in modern age is that natural is better than unnatural. I just don't love the implication.
  • image EMLYNNLERETTE:
    I don't think using medication is natural. If you choose to have a medicated vaginal birth, that is what it is IMO. If you are having a 'natural birth' and don't say with medication, I assume med free. You don't have meds in nature.
    There are so many things wrong with this. There are MANY medicinal plants and things found in nature.

    I hate the term natural birth because of what someone else said. It implies that people who have a medicated birth for whatever reason, c/s, epi, etc, had an unnatural birth. And they didn't. It's natural to do whatever YOU need to do to birth a healthy baby.

    Unless that baby comes out your mouth, it's a natural birth. 

  • I think people think way too much on different terms in general. I don't care about someone using the term natural birth. Generally I take that to mean without pain meds when people say it, but I also think people get their panties in a wad and way too sensitive about using the term or not, much like a lot of other things these days.

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  • image auroraloo:

    image EMLYNNLERETTE:
    I don't think using medication is natural. If you choose to have a medicated vaginal birth, that is what it is IMO. If you are having a 'natural birth' and don't say with medication, I assume med free. You don't have meds in nature.
    There are so many things wrong with this. There are MANY medicinal plants and things found in nature.

    I hate the term natural birth because of what someone else said. It implies that people who have a medicated birth for whatever reason, c/s, epi, etc, had an unnatural birth. And they didn't. It's natural to do whatever YOU need to do to birth a healthy baby.

    Unless that baby comes out your mouth, it's a natural birth. 



    Love this! Auroraloo, I'm with you.
  • image OliveMom3:
    image auroraloo:

    image EMLYNNLERETTE:
    I don't think using medication is natural. If you choose to have a medicated vaginal birth, that is what it is IMO. If you are having a 'natural birth' and don't say with medication, I assume med free. You don't have meds in nature.
    There are so many things wrong with this. There are MANY medicinal plants and things found in nature.

    I hate the term natural birth because of what someone else said. It implies that people who have a medicated birth for whatever reason, c/s, epi, etc, had an unnatural birth. And they didn't. It's natural to do whatever YOU need to do to birth a healthy baby.

    Unless that baby comes out your mouth, it's a natural birth. 

    Love this! Auroraloo, I'm with you.
    I was going to Yes your comment too.  
  • The traditional use of the word natural to refer to childbirth does indicate no meds and little use of other interventions. You're talking about a vaginal birth vs surgical birth.
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  • I don't mind either term, there's a flipping board on this site titled Natural Birth, and obviously they meant it to mean unmedicated. I honestly find it a little annoying to see women corrected when they use the term natural, but it's totally a term I avoid here because if I do the resulting conversation ends up straying from whatever the point of my comment or post intended.
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