Monday, July 14, 2008

Is being pregnant and delivering still considered an illness?

I need people to settle something for me - are pregnancy and labour and delivery still considered to be an illness in the United States?

I know that there are women in the US who save their sick days so they can have a half-decent maternity leave. As a Canadian, where we have had generous maternity leave policies for a while now, especially in Quebec, this is so foreign to me. But, when I learned of the American Medical Association's (AMA) stand on home births, I really had to wonder.

First, I have to point out that I, personally, did not want home births but I fully support the right of a woman and her partner to decide what they feel is right for them. I am, however, a huge, huge advocate of midwives, something that is very slow to be mainstream here in Canada.

In this day and age of patients become more aware of their own health care issues and options, it seems so wrong for the one more natural of functions, childbirth, be taken out of the patients' hands. It's as if we're back in the days of the doctors being men, patting the little lady on the head, saying "there, there mum, we'll take care of everything for you."

To better understand what I'm talking about, I invite you to visit my pregnancy blog, Womb Within, where I have two posts that discuss this. The first one, Tsk, tsk Ricki Lake, discusses how the AMA didn't like Ricki Lake's documentary on the topic and yesterday's post, MANA editorial regarding “AMA Seeks to Deny Women Choices in Childbirth” is a published editorial from the Midwives Alliance of North America (NAMA).

What do you think?

Today at Help My Hurt:

ABCs of pain: N is for…
Hormone therapy after menopause may increase risk of gall stones
ABCs of pain: M is for….
Aching shoulders? Article here about causes and treatments
Are growing pains real?
Ease lower back pain with at-your-desk stretch
Have cold sores? What are your tricks?

Today at Womb Within:

Celebrity pregnancy: Angelina Jolie has her twins
African American women more likely to bear premature, low-birth-weight infants
Video: month 6 of pregnancy - end of 2nd trimester
Book on postpartum depression: “The Smiling Mask”
Video: month 5 of pregnancy - more than half-way there!
Top 10 posts at Womb Within this week

News for Today:

10 Machines You Must Avoid at Your Gym
Famed Heart Surgeon Michael DeBakey Dead
Cellphone use potentially risky for kids, teens: health agency
Sideline rage -- sports parents go berserk
Colorectal cancer screening rates still too low
Why time off is time well spent for your health

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