Preparing for Labor

Compiled from polls

You’ve seen those TV birthing shows and seen screaming moms in the movies. But what will labor really be like? See how prepared other moms were for the final stage of pregnancy: labor. We asked our readers on to give us their thoughts on preparing for delivery. Also read about what decisions other soon-to-be parents made about the births of their children. See how your reactions stack up!

Fear Factor

If you're scared silly about childbirth, you're not alone. According to a poll of 775 visitors:
- 38% said they were a little nervous.
- 25% said they were only slightly worried or not worried at all.
- 24%
of expecting moms said they're very scared about childbirth.
- 17% said they were moderately worried.

Important Deadline

Wondering how accurate those due-date calculations really are? According to an online poll of 135 new moms:
- 56% said they delivered their babies within five days of their due dates.
- 25% gave birth within two days of their due dates.
- 19% actually gave birth on their due date.

Scheduled Delivery

Expectant moms may schedule their deliveries for several reasons: They want to have a certain doctor deliver their baby; they need to have a c-section; or they have work or family considerations. We asked 356 visitors whether or not they'd consider scheduling childbirth for nonmedical reasons.
- 68% said they would not.
- 27% said they would.
- 6% weren't sure.

Full House

A surprising number of women – almost half – said they planned to have a friend or family member other than their partner present in the delivery room when they give birth. We posed the "partner plus" scenario to 967 visitors and...
- 49% said no, they wouldn't have someone in addition to their partner/spouse present.
- 48% said yes, they would.
- 3% were undecided.

Now Breathe…

Confused by all the different childbirth methods that are available to you? According to an online poll of 219 users:
- 57% said they used the Lamaze method.
- 25% said they used another/no particular childbirth method.
- 9% chose Bradley.
- 7% went with water birthing.
- 3% tried hypnobirthing.

A birth plan can be a very useful tool for your health-care provider and your labor support team. If you have strong feelings about the choices you'll have to make regarding your baby's delivery, it's important that you put together your plan long before delivery day arrives. According to a poll of 570 visitors:
- 63% of those queried said they did not/will not write a birth plan.
- 28% said they did/will write one.
- 9% were undecided.

Good Support

Doulas and midwives seem to be increasing in popularity. An online poll of 369 visitors found that:
- 72% of those queried said they did not use a doula or midwife during delivery.
- 20% said they used/will use a midwife.
- 5% hired/will hire a doula.
- 2% said they used both.

Here's your chance to put your adorable baby on the cover of American Baby magazine!
•Quiz: Are You In Labor?
•Preparing For Labor & Delivery
•Your Growing Belly
•WOW! What Labor Is Really Like
•Slide Show: Prenatal Yoga Workout

Find your favorite baby names - and the meanings, origins and traits associated with them!

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