Today Hope Smith is on the blog and she’s here to give us all her tips for an all natural birth.
Recently Hope was on The Skinny Confidential HIM & HER podcast discussing her natural birth journey, her experience with surrogacy, reality TV, & her time as a Playmate.
If you’re interested in a natural child birth, this post is for you. Hope is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to all natural births & we couldn’t be happier that she decided to share her tips & tricks with us.
Not only is Hope a mom, author, and philanthropist, she is also the CEO of MUTHA™. Lauryn is a huge fan of the body butter. Plus, Hope is an esthetician, former model, author, and wife to Robert F. Smith. She also focuses on nonprofits that support women, mothers, and children, including Conscious Kid, International Medical Corps and Together We Rise.
Anyway, let’s get right into it and welcome Hope Smith to the blog.
Tips For An All-Natural Birth With Hope Dworaczyk Smith, CEO of MUTHA™
My name is Hope Dworaczyk Smith and I’m the Founder and CEO of luxury skincare brand MUTHA™. Aside from being an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and author; my greatest achievement is being a proud mother to four children. My two eldest children were home births. After seeing how much my dedicated doula helped me throughout my pregnancy journeys, I trained to become a doula myself in 2018 to expand my knowledge of pregnancy and childbirth. When I had even more to share on pregnancy and childbirth, I decided to write a book! It’s so important for all of us to talk about childbirth and to raise awareness that every birth plan is unique.
The journey through motherhood can be daunting, but you don’t have to go it alone. When it comes to raising children, we talk about that “village,” but pregnancy and giving birth also shouldn’t be solo tasks. You should surround yourself with a team that brings with them all the skills that you require to bring a new life into the world. You might look for that team in your OBGYN’s office to start, but don’t end there. Even when you choose natural or home birth, that team is no less important. I chose many helpers to make my natural births the most amazing experiences of my life. Hopefully, you can too! Here are some tips I’ve learned that can help you on your own all-natural birth journey.
Tips For an All-Natural Birth:
♡ Find the right midwife
Find an excellent midwife and doula whose energy is one you genuinely feel comfortable and connect with. A midwife is someone who assists with the medical side of pregnancy and childbirth, while a doula is an emotional and physical guide throughout your pregnancy.
“For women who have no history of birth complications or medical conditions there is no difference in the safety or results when attended by a professional midwife in a home compared to a hospital,”
– “Your Body Is Magic: Wellness Strategies for a Healthy Pregnancy and Birth.”
♡ Take hypnobirthing classes
Attend hypnobirthing classes or learn breathing techniques for pain reduction and mental focus during birth. Hypnobirthing helps mothers-to-be reduce potential fears and anxiety related to childbirth with a combination of hypnosis, visualization, and deep relaxation techniques.
♡ Consider clean eating
Make sure you are incorporating good for you foods and clean eating into your diet and are taking additional supplements throughout your pregnancy. Unless you want to have a “basic” baby, don’t take a “basic” prenatal vitamin – your body needs so much more! Supplements can be great, but there’s no one-size-fits-all solution for every mama’s vitamin needs. So talk to your care team to get a supplement regimen that works best for you.
♡ Be mindful of chemicals in your home
Be aware of the chemicals you’re using around your house and in your personal care products. If you want to have a natural birth, you should be cognisant of the chemicals and ingredients surrounding your everyday lifestyle.
I created MUTHA™ Body Butter because I couldn’t find any stretch mark prevention cream that wasn’t loaded with fillers and synthetic ingredients that could potentially be harmful to my baby. Two pregnancies later, I’m stretch mark free. Oh, and our MUTHA™ Body Butter is clinically tested too.
♡ Rest and bond with your child
Birth isn’t a spectator sport. Don’t allow anyone to attend the birth if even 1% of you is unsure about their attendance. It’s okay to tell even your closest family that they can visit at a later date to give you time to rest and bond with the baby.
♡ Work out before and during the pregnancy
It’s so important to work out during pregnancy. Giving birth is a marathon, and you need to be physically fit for anything it might throw at you. Focusing on strengthening your pelvic floor is key for preparing to give birth, but it also is important after giving birth as well.
My friend Brooke Cates, an amazing pregnancy-focused exercise coach, created a series of workouts to empower women throughout their pregnancy. You can join her courses online or get a circuit of key exercises to incorporate during all phases of your pregnancy, as well as during those postpartum months, in my book, Your Body Is Magic: Wellness Strategies for a Healthy Pregnancy and Birth. They include work on pelvic floor strength, core strength, breathing exercises, lunges, and squats. It’s intense! But it’s what you need to have enough strength (both mental and physical) for giving birth.
♡ Do perineal massages
Soften the vagina and perineum by doing perineal massages starting at 35 weeks. Perineal massages stretch the tissue between the opening of the vagina and anus. According to the National Health Service (NHS) in Great Britain (that included data from American mothers as well), up to 85% first-time mothers who have a vaginal birth will have some sort of tear, muscle injury, or episiotomy.
A NHS study found that first-time mothers who performed perineal massage were less likely to tear, and even mothers who performed the massage and had less discomfort in weeks following childbirth. Talk to your care team, like your doula or OBGYN, about perineal massage and methods that would work for your body. Generally speaking, performing a perineal massage for about five minutes a day is plenty to get your body ready.
The tools you use are simple: your thumbs and a healthy lubricant for the skin. My midwife had me use Vitamin E on the vagina’s opening and perineum to prevent tearing of the tissues of the area during delivery.
♡ Stay active
Keep it moving. During early labor, walk the halls, stay upright and active to speed things along.
“Make no mistake about it: Birth is an athletic event. One of the best ways to prepare for all the physiological changes to come, and for the event itself – and to handle them with strength and grace – is to exercise. What’s more, exercise can help ease you through the mental and emotional shifts that often accompany the transition to motherhood.”
– “Your Body Is Magic: Wellness Strategies for a Healthy Pregnancy and Birth.”
♡ Create affirmations for your partner or doula
Create positive affirmations for birth that your partner or doula can present to you during labor. This will help keep you in the right mindspace during this special time. Affirmations are the practice of stating (verbally or nonverbally) positive statements to help you navigate stressful situations in your life. Some examples could be:
“I trust my body to know what to do.”
“I relax and my baby relaxes with me.”
“Each surge of my body brings my baby closer to me.”
Affirmations can be very personal, almost like a mantra, so be sure to create ones that best fit your goals and mindspace.
♡ Trust your body
Remember that women have been giving birth since the beginning of time, and trust that your body knows what it’s doing. We’ve been preconditioned to believe that our only option is a hospital birth with drugs that block us from feeling feelings that are a part of life. Knowing that you have options and can fully control this experience on your own terms is so important during this time.
♡ A final tip…you’ve got homework
Do your research: there are tons of books, expert talks, and podcasts dedicated to educating around the natural birthing space. My book, Your Body Is Magic, is filled with wellness strategies and personal experiences from both of my beautiful natural home births. My website also includes tips on motherhood, skincare, and women who’ve made a change in the world.
You can follow Hope on her Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram feeds.
Also, be sure to pick up Hope’s book if you’re interested in literally learning how Your Body Is Magic. So useful if you’re pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant one day, all-natural birth or not.
x, The Skinny Confidential team
+ scope Lauryn’s postpartum fashion picks.
++ check out how she lost her pregnancy weight here.
LEAVE A COMMENT
one reply to “Tips For An All-Natural Birth With Hope Dworaczyk Smith, CEO of MUTHA™”
I love to see birth experiences on the skinny confidential, especially one as unique as Hope’s. As a physical therapist, my favorite tip is exercising before and during pregnancy. It is *chef’s kisses* and so spot on. Great post!