During the birth, the
woman may wish to lean forward and grab her knees, or she may
want to squat or lie on her side. Let her decide which position
is most comfortable. When the babys head is visible in
the vaginal opening, the birth is about to occur. Do not try
to hurry the birth by pulling on the babys head. Let the
woman push the baby out. Usually, as the baby is born, the face
will appear straight down or straight up.
As soon as the head is
outside the vagina, put two fingers along the top side of the head
and feel around the neck area for a loop of the umbilical cord.
It will be about the thickness of your little finger. If you can
feel it, hook the loop of cord with your two fingers and slide
it gently over the babys head.
The babys head should
then turn toward one side and the shoulders should come out. Assist
the birth by supporting the babys head and shoulders, but
remember not to pull. Be careful the baby will be slippery.
If there is a membrane covering the babys mouth and nose,
gently wipe it off with a clean cloth. Do not remove the whitish
coating on the body.