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The C-Section Epidemic: To C-Section Or Not To C-Section... That Is The Question

Over the past 20 years, there has been a growing group of moms who all agree on one thing:
c-section is where it's at!

I’ve heard many moms ‘swear by’ the c-section, claiming they wouldn’t have it any other way.

And while the world-wide rate of c-section is at about 19% of births, The US rate is closer to 33%. What could possibly be the reason that the US rate is so much higher than the rest of the civilized world? Only one thing I can think of and that is the growing popularity of The Elective C-Section.

Having had an “emergency c-section” in 1996 and two more following repeated requests (i.e. begging doctors) to let me try for a VBAC, this preference for surgery has me baffled.

Speaking with these moms, it almost sounds like c-section is the luxury-upgrade option. As if the whole thing is as simple as placing an order for a baby, to arrive on the day and time of your choosing.

No line and no waiting: Get Your C-Section! RIGHT HERE!

Baby On Demand? Sign Me Up!

It sounds good, right?


Now, before you get offended, let me just acknowledge the legitimate need for the option to have a c-section in an emergency situation. I get it. As a matter of fact, as I already mentioned, I have had an emergency c-section. So I'm most definitely not in a position to judge. Whether or not my c-section was actually necessary, well, that’s a subject for a different day. But, again, no judgment.

For that matter, I'll not judge any mom who chooses the convenience of c-section over waiting to go into labor who knows when. To each, their own is my motto! Genuinely, truly and respectfully.

I do wonder, though, if moms knew the risks, would they still choose the unnecessary, elective surgery for convenience?

I tend to believe that if given the choice, moms will do their best to avoid the unintended consequences of anything that carries a risk and that includes c-section. 

The C-Section Epidemic

In a 35 year study published in the journal Pediatrics, done on Danish babies, researchers determined that children born by c-section had a significantly increased risk of asthma, systemic connective tissue disorders, juvenile arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, immune deficiencies, and leukemia.

This is cause for concern and just some of the considerations when making a conscious decision about how you will birth your child.

Long Story Short

I am writing this article because I want every single mom who has a choice to be 100% informed about the choice she is making.

This is just the first in a series of articles I will write about what I believe is a c-section epidemic in the US.

I will do my best to list all the reasons to opt-out of c-section when given the choice, as well as share my personal story.

Again, out of my five children, three of them were born by c-section. I’ll explain how one of my c-sections was considered an emergency and the other two, while the appearance of no-choice was there, elective, nonetheless.

And, I will share how I finally got my VBAC with baby number 5 and lived to tell about it.

No Shame

For all the moms out there who have chosen c-section, there is no shame in that. You weren’t choosing the risk, you were choosing how to give birth. That you may not have understood that the method of delivery would carry increased risk later in life is not your fault.

Someone Needs To Be Talking About This

Please, for the love of life, don’t shoot the messenger! I want nothing but the best for every mom and every baby.

But my mind has been blown by the number of women who have chosen elective c-section. This leads me to believe that by and large, expectant mothers are being hoodwinked by their doctors and the medical community as a whole.

It is my belief that it is the duty of your doctor to disclose information regarding evidence-based conclusions on c-sections. And yet, this is likely not happening.

Let’s say, your doctor says to you, straight up, “Let’s go ahead and get you scheduled for that c-section – oh but wait, before we do, I need you to understand that this c-section will increase your child’s risk of developing a deadly food allergy (peanuts), oh and a bunch of other stuff, too...” How ok are you with that?

Talk to the mom with the child with the peanut allergies & immune deficiencies (hello! that’s me) and find out if she would take back that c-section if it meant she didn’t have to worry about whether her kid would be exposed to a deadly allergen at school every day. ME! ME! ME! Yes, that’s me. I would. If I knew the risks; if someone had told me; I would have bent over backward to get out of that required (if I wanted to have a doctor) elective c-section.

What Are Your Thoughts On This?

I would love to hear stories of moms who either chose or had emergency c-sections.

Obviously, not every c-section baby will grow up and have obviously related issues. And risk is everywhere in life, so it’s easy to have no regrets when you don’t see the negative side effects – I totally get that.

But, risk seems to be increasing, which means odds of developing negative side effects are increasing. And just because something doesn’t happen until later in life, does not mean that it wasn’t related to how you were born.

Stay tuned for the next chapter in The C-Section Epidemic.

And if you like this article, it helped you and/or you think it may help someone else, PLEASE SHARE IT! 

andi@hello-baby-organics.com c-section

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