Types of birth

It is important to understand your birth options and to feel confident in your choices.

Vaginal birth

For low-risk women, whose baby is in the head-down position, a normal vaginal birth is the safest and best option. 

If your baby is breech (in the bottom-down position), you will determine your options with your health care provider. Options include:

  • Trying to move the baby into the correct position

  • Having a Cesarean birth or

  • Having a vaginal breech birth

You can increase your chances of a vaginal birth in the following ways:

  • Avoiding being induced unless there is a medical reason to do so.

  • Moving around as much as you like during your labour. You do not have to stay in a bed. You may feel like standing, walking, swaying back and forth, or kneeling on your hands and knees.

  • Receiving continuous one-on-one support throughout your labour. This may be provided by a supportive partner, family member or friend, or by a trained birthing coach or doula.

  • Avoiding interventions without a medical reason.

  • During birth, pushing in the position that feels best to you, especially in positions where gravity can help (e.g. kneeling, squatting).

Learn more by reading the I want a healthy vaginal birth pamphlet by Optimal Birth BC.

Cesarean section

If you're scheduled to have a Cesarean section – check out the information for your hospital: 

Birth after Cesarean section

Are you thinking about your options for next birth after caesarean? Perinatal Services BC has an online interactive tool called My Next Birth that can help. My Next Birth aims to give you clear information that supports your values and goals for your next birth after a caesarean delivery.

If you've previously had a Cesarean section, you don't necessarily need to have another one. Learn about vaginal birth after Cesarean section on Healthy Families BC or you can talk to your obstetrician or health care provider.