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Active Birth: The New Approach to Giving Birth Naturally (Non) Paperback – March 16, 1992
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Active Birth contains a wealth of information for pregnancy, childbirth, and the postnatal period. -- Midwest Book Review
Janet Balaskas revised edition of Active Birth is an inspiring book. She is writing to the lay public, to women anticipating a birth. However, this well written, informative and energetic book should be read by health professionals as well. -- Family Medicine
From the Back Cover
PRAISE for ACTIVE BIRTH ""Active Birth" will inspire and instruct those who want to give birth through their own efforts by following their own instincts." - Penny Simkin, author of" Pregnancy, Childbirth, and the Newborn " "An empowering approach to labor and birth." - Barbara Katz Rothman, author of "In Labor "and "Recreating Motherhood " "Clearly written, carefully documented, and copiously illustrated, this new edition celebrates the inherent wisdom of women's birthing instincts. It also serves up a complete course of preparation to guide those of us who need to be reminded just how natural childbirth can be." - Adrienne B. Lieberman, author of "Giving Birth" and "Easing Labor Pain" "This book strips away the false complexity of modern obstetrics. Read this book. Claim its wisdom." - Robert Scaer, co-author of "A Good Birth, A Safe Birth" "Janet Balaskas captures the psychological essence of giving birth and the spirit of active participation so important to a woman's self-esteem during pregnancy and delivery." - Gayle Peterson, Ph.D., author of "Birthing Normally "and "An Easier Childbirth"
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I highly recommend this book for all moms considering a natural/active birth and most definitely for all doulas, midwives, nurses, OBs and birth attendants. Partners can greatly benefit too!!!
Labor is LOTS of hard work and very intense, it's not something I would call painless. I do understand that there are circumstances where a laboring woman will need medical help and I would never say she shouldn't take it. Drugs have their own place in the whole scheme of things and should be used where necessary. I have been on that side of the equation too and would never blame someone for making an informed choice. But if someone tells you that c-section is "safe and easy these days" or episiotomy is "routine and ok" or epidural is so much more fun...don't believe them blindly. A drug-free birth is painful but the pain is manageable if you have the right information and you trust your body.
And to return to a more relevant topic (as a review on this book), this book will provide you with a ton of information on how to do it. The exercises are very helpful to prep your body for the hard work and even useful otherwise to get back in shape after the birth. Information about the different upright positions, what helps what kind of labor pain etc is also extremely useful. This book made the most sense to me of all the books on labor and was something that was practically useful. I would recommend this book to everyone who is interested in a drug-free birth.