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Tips for avoiding a repeat cesarean when planning your Vaginal Birth After Cesarean



Today I wanted to share with you what you can do to avoid a repeat C-section.

We're going to talk about the three tips that I have for you to control what you can and avoid another C-section.


If you're planning a VBAC, I know that repeat cesarean is probably one of the top concerns you have. And while I think we all realize we cannot control everything about birth, there are some things we can control. So what decisions can you make? What things can you change today to improve the chances of a successful VBAC?



Disclaimer: Any of the information, experiences, opinions, and stories told on this podcast are with the intention of inspiring educating and informing parents. This information is not intended to treat or diagnose any medical conditions. If you have questions, you must consult your provider. Jaimie Zaki does not accept liability for any decisions that you make after listening to this podcast/reading this blog post.



Avoiding a Repeat Cesarean Tip #1 : Find a VBAC supportive Provider


Tip number one for having a successful VBAC and avoiding repeat C-Section is finding a VBAC supportive provider. If you've been hanging out with me for a bit, you know that I will say over and over how important it is to find a truly supportive OBGYN or Midwife for your VBAC. Some things to be aware of is if they think they need to manage you or if they see you as an equal,

if they feel like you two are a team working together or they think they're the authority on you and your body and birth. Be aware if they are projecting a negative birth experience; maybe they attended a VBAC last week that didn't go so well, so now they're telling you that all these things are wrong with VBAC. Maybe the problem wasn't even that the mom had a VBAC or planned a VBAC, but it could have been just 1000 other things that are out of anybody's control.


You need to find a V back supportive provider. What does that mean? What does that look like?

It can be hard to tell. It can be hard to know if your provider is truly truly supportive of VBAC.

But there are some questions you can ask, you can ask them how they handle certain situations that you might be concerned about. You can ask what kind of guidelines or boundaries they set as their policies toward the end of pregnancy and kind of based off their answers to that.

You can usually tell if they are truly supportive of VBAC or not.


There are really great providers out there and there are really bad ones and early in the pregnancy it really can be hard to tell the difference because sometimes they do just say what you want to hear.



Second tip for avoiding a Repeat Cesarean: Learn the truth about VBAC so you can identify bad advice.


It's fine if you ask all the questions but you're going to get answers and how do you know if those answers are fact fiction? How do you know if they're exaggerated, dramatized or minimized?


You need to learn the truth about VBAC and that's what I'm here for. I am here to help you uncover that truth. I am help you here to help you identify bad advice. I am here to help you learn how to advocate for yourself and how to facilitate good productive conversations with your provider.


I'm here to help you be fierce and fight back when you need to. But I don't want it to be a fight for you. I want to help you learn how to ask the right questions and then ask them again.


For example, if your provider tells you like "oh well I don't induce VBAC" and you say "well I would rather have an induction than a repeat C section. So what options do I have?"

And if they say well "we don't induce VBAC, I'm sorry." You can say "well why don't you induce VBAC? I understand there is an increased risk. However, I am willing to accept that risk and would prefer a VBAC. What induction options do I have?"


And they say like "well we don't induce VBAC, this could happen, that could happen." And they paint this really scary picture...I teach you how to come back with, "Okay well what about this option? What about that option?" And we actually write your birth plan so that you're prepared for these situations. We have contingency upon contingency on contingency.


Honestly that is the beauty of a birth plan and I'll talk about that another day.

But the beauty of your birth plan is actually being able to learn about all of your options in a deeper way.


Tip #3 for avoiding a Repeat Cesarean: Make sure you have quality labor support.


The tip for how to avoid a repeat cesarean is having continuous labor support.


Studies have shown that women who have continuous labor support are less likely to have their birth end in a C-Section. So these studies are usually used for um the evidence for doulas to show that doulas actually reduce the incidence of cesarean birth. Ifyou are planning to VBAC and you're trying to avoid a C-Section and that is your goal, I highly recommend having a good doula.


If a doula is not for you because it's just not in the budget or you just don't want an extra person in your space, you need to have a good "daddy doula." Your husband needs to learn the stuff along with you. It can't just be you learning all these things because you can't communicate them to him during labor.


So your birth partner, whoever that is whether that's your husband or your mother or your sister.

That birth partner needs to prepare themselves and get educated so that they too can learn how to question the provider, learn when to push back and when their recommendations might be worth listening to and heeding.



Those are the three tips that I have for you today, MamaBear!


1. Find a VBAC supportive provider.


2. Figure out the questions to ask them, decide if they are supportive if they are not supportive.

Then you have decisions to make. Either you use that provider or you don't use that provider,

you use that provider and you have to fight and you have to push and you have to advocate and hope for the best or you find a different provider. But I know that's not always an option.

So step two is to know the truth about back so you can identify bad advice and push back against it.


3. have continuous labor support who knows how to support you.


I recommend a doula but a doula is not for everybody. So then I recommend that your birth partner gets special training in how to support you. The truth is most birth partners don't know how to support a woman in labor. Most husbands don't know what to do for their wife.

They want to, they want to know what to do. They want to help. But they don't know how it is not fair to put them in that situation thinking, well they're just a generally supportive person and assume that they'll know how to handle labor. That's not fair to them. It's also not fair to you.

And even if you have a sister or a friend or a mom who has given birth once or twice and you know has seen it before, that doesn't mean that they're going to be good at helping you advocate helping you get out of fear cycles, stay in safety cycles and know when to push back.

W hoever your birth partner is going to be needs to get informed on VBAC also needs to learn the truth about VBAC also.


How can I learn the truth about VBAC to increase my likelihood of a successful VBAC?


And that is why I invite you to the VBAC with confidence birth prep program.

This birth prep program takes you through birth. It takes you through the mind work the tactical decision that you have to make about birth, how to change the plans when you need to understanding comfort measure options, understanding what to expect in labor, preparing yourself for that. And then it has a whole deeper level going into the nuances of VBAC and having to advocate for your VBAC birth.


We talk about some of the unique battles you might face that other moms don't face. If your mom or sister or whoever is supporting you during labor has never had a bad VBAC, then they definitely don't understand everything that comes along with it unless they have done a lot of learning training and diving into that. There's another layer, there's another layer of stress worry concern when you're planning to VBAC. You know that, I know that... because we've been there and that's what your birth partner needs to learn.


So that's what you will learn inside VBAC with Confidence. You will learn how to find a VBAC supportive provider, how to advocate for yourself and identify bad advice, and your birth partner will learn how to be a strong strong support person for you.


I pray that you have learned something new today. I hope that this episode gives you faith and confidence that you can avoid a repeat C-Section with the right support and good knowledge.

I hope that this episode gives you confidence that there are things you can control to help avoid a repeat C section.


Sure, there are the things you can't control. Things like if you have a side effect to a medically necessary medication, if your baby is in a bad position and doesn't want to change no matter what you have done if your baby has a medical emergency and requires immediate delivery.

If you have a medical emergency and require immediate delivery. Those are things you can't control.


But there are things that you can control and these are some of them.


I hope this inspires you and you walk away from this feeling ready for your VBAC!


The Vbac Podcast inspiring and informing women to strengthen their confidence by reframing fear and reclaiming power as they prepare for vaginal birth after cesarean listen now Jaimie Zaki VBAC doula Vbac Podcast VBAC class


Family photo of Jaimie Zaki hostess of the VBAC podcast and her family credit to photographer honey and vine photography

Jaimie Zaki is mother to four little bears, VBAC doula, Hostess of the VBAC podcast, LPN, and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. Jaimie has had a cesarean, hospital VBAC, and two homebirth VBACs, and has supported countless women through their pregnancy, birth, and postpartum journey. Jaimie's mission is to help you strengthen your Three Pillars of Confidence to increase the likelihood of a positive and peaceful birth and postpartum experience.

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