Home is where the heart is, and where the birth is too these days. Statistics show that the home-birth rate increased 20 percent between 2004 and 2008 after a 15-year slide, and the delivery method is appealing to a wide range of women. Credit Ricki Lake for that. Her Business of Being Born book and documentary have turned a new generation of moms-to-be on to the movement. Check out 15 celeb moms who've opted out of the hospital experience to give birth to their lil ones at home.
Gisele Bundchen isn't done talking about her birthing experience. The supermodel shared more information about baby Benjamin's December debut in the inaugural post on her blog. After telling reporters that the water birth in her Beacon Hill bathtub didn't hurt a bit, the new mama is now writing about how safe she felt delivering at home:
Giving birth was the most intense and life-changing experience of my life. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to deliver at home, surrounded by love and where I felt safe. It was a really great experience. I never felt so vulnerable, but so strong at the same time.
Maternal safety has become a hot topic following a report that showed California's death rate directly related to pregnancy as higher than that of Bosnia and Kuwait. Safety is also cited as one of the reasons for the increase in homebirths over the past five years.
Did you feel safe during your birthing experience?
It looks like Gisele isn't the only mama-to-be opting to bring her lil one into the world at home. A new study from the Centers for Disease Control shows that after a 15-year decline, homebirths have risen 5 percent over the past five years. The period of study, which predates Gisele's at-home water birth and Ricki Lake's homebirth advocacy flick, found that the average woman who chooses to have a non-hospital birth is a non-Hispanic white woman over the age of 25 who already has a child at home. She is most likely to have a midwife attend the event, with 61 percent of births attended by these professionals. Expectant women who live in Vermont and Montana are also more likely to choose a homebirth, as their states had the highest percentages of deliveries outside a hospital. Have you considered a home birth? If so, why?
The Business of Being Born has brought more attention to the film's star and co-producer Ricki Lake than she may have ever imagined. The former talk-show host made it her mission to birth her second baby naturally and document the experience to release to the public. She and co-producer, Abby Epstein revealed facts about epidurals, C-sections, and inductions.
As an encore, the bubbly girl from New York is back with another documentary due out this Fall. Based on their book, the new movie is called My Best Birth. It focuses on the American maternity-care system and has famous moms like Laila Ali, Melissa Joan Hart, Kristy Turlington, and Kimberly Williams-Paisley giving snippets of their own experiences. Cindy Crawford kicks off the series of four webisodes tomorrow. The videos will air each week for the next month, detailing how the women chose their midwifes, did prenatal yoga, and the lessons they learned. Watch the trailer and tell us if you'll be tuning in.
It is estimated that of the 4.1 million babies born in the U.S. in 2004, 7,000 were born at home without a midwife or doctor. Planned unassisted home-births, similar to those advocated by Ricki Lake in her The Business of Being Born documentary, are on the rise across the country, with women wanting the ability to control the birth process and have loved ones surrounding them during the birth. Many mamas-to-be believe those aspects outweigh the risks.
Until the 20th century, childbirth was the leading cause of death for women, with approximately 1 in 100 mothers dying in the early 1900s. Today, that rate is closer to 13 in 100,000, due to better prenatal care, medications and the option of cesarean sections when necessary.
Yesterday was not only the festive tequila filled Cinco de Mayo. It was also International Midwives Day. Coincidentally, Ricki Lake's movie, The Business of Being Born was released on DVD.
For those of you who are considering a natural or home birth, check out the $28 flick for an up close glimpse at the process. The former talk show host shares her personal home birth in the film inspiring women to reevaluate their birthing plans.