Men shouldn't watch women give birth, says doctor

Men shouldn't watch women give birth, says doctor

If you're in a relationship, chances are you can't imagine giving birth without your partner being there.

But it wasn't even that long ago that men weren't allowed in delivery suites.

Fast forward a few decades and the vast majority are there throughout labour and birth.

But, according to a doctor, this isn't actually process and that men were better off in the waiting room because they should NEVER watch a woman give birth.

Men shouldn't watch women give birth, says doctor


UK medic, Michael Odent argues that their absence is better for everyone involved - father, mother and baby.

He says women can relax easier without their partner by their side, which in turn will speed up labour and delivery.

He also claims a woman needs to be left alone for a while after she has given birth, as this helps with the bonding process.

He explained: "After birth, too, a woman needs a few moments alone with her baby, particularly between the time the child is born and she delivers the placenta. And this is not just about her need to bond with her baby.


"Physically, in order to deliver the placenta with ease, her levels of oxytocin - the hormone of love - need to peak.

"This happens if she has a moment in which she can forget everything about the world, save for her baby, and if she has time in which she can look into the baby’s eyes, make contact with its skin and take in its smell without any distractions."

Dads as birth coaches

In some situations, dads may be asked to leave the room, and in some cases women might just feel more comfortable without them there - and that's something you need to discuss as a couple before the time comes.

Quite opposite to Dr Odent's view is that of US doctor Robert Bradley, who in 1962 published Father's Presence in Delivery Rooms - a review of 4,000 cases when husbands were present.

He concluded that the husband's presence as a so-called "birth coach" actually helped the woman to relax.

"With husbands coaching, we have more than 90% totally unmedicated births. No other approach comes near to that figure," he wrote.

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