Articles - Push and Breathe
How to help your body push your baby out

Push and Breathe


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How to help your body push your baby out

Breathing in the second stage of labour is as important as the breathing in active labour.

A woman moves into the second stage when her cervix is fully dilated. In the earlier part of this process, the contractions may slow down to allow you to recover and gather some energy. As the baby descends you will feel the urge to push and as this ‘fetal ejection reflex’ increases it is time to allow yourself to go with this urge.

As the body pushes, take a long breath in through the nose then form a tight valve with your mouth to very slowly exhale. This helps maintain the pressure that keeps baby moving down. Maintaining a calm nasal breath in between the contractions/pushes is helpful to recharge and oxygenate the uterus, baby and Mother.

Holding your breath and pushing often tightens the pelvic floor, creating resistance and depriving the baby of oxygen. Finding a combination of bearing down and also softening the pelvic floor with your breath can help you to breathe your baby out slowly and gently.

The use of breathing techniques as you birth your child allows for a gentler transition into the world and a calmer welcome for you and baby.

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