An increasing number of hospitals in the United States have begun offering nitrous oxide to women in labor since the FDA approved new equipment for use in labor in 2011. In the Boston area where I am, Brigham and Women’s Hospital started offering it nearly two years ago, and then other hospitals, including South Shore,…

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What is my fantasy of the perfect birth experience? Do you want to squat to push out your baby in your bedroom? Labor in water? Get an epidural in the hospital parking lot? While no one can predict how your labor will go, thinking about your ideal will help you make decisions now and in…

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“Is this something I have to do?” my childbirth students frequently ask me about cervical exams. The short answer is no. Especially in teaching hospitals, women are often examined in labor frequently, without even knowing why. The most important question to ask when considering an exam, like any other test, is “What will we do…

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