“The techno-medical model of maternity care, unlike the midwifery model, is comparatively new on the world scene, having existed for barely two centuries. This male-derived framework for care is a product of the industrial revolution. As anthropologist Robbie Davis-Floyd has described in detail, underlying the technocratic mode of care of our own time is an assumption that the human body is a machine and that the female body in particular is a machine full of shortcomings and defects. Pregnancy and labor are seen as illnesses, which, in order not to be harmful to mother or baby, must be treated with drugs and medical equipment. Within the techno-medical model of birth, some medical intervention is considered necessary for every birth, and birth is safe only in retrospect.”
― Ina May Gaskin, Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth
Documentation is very important when doing your own prenatal care so aside from keeping record with pen and paper, I’m also going to keep track of my prenatal care on my blog as well.
Last Menstrual Period – June 24th
Pre-pregnancy weight – 102 lbs
Ovulation & conception – July 8th 2012
Positive pregnancy – July 21st
Proof of pregnancy secured – July 28th
My Guesstimated due date by MY calculations is March 31st 2013. Planned parenthood gave me an EDD of April 1st 2013. Only 5% of babies are actually born on their “due dates”, my son Finn being one of them. I don’t like the term due date, for some people this becomes some sort of eviction notice that their babies MUST come out this day or shortly after. Due dates can be off by several weeks in either direction of time.
“The 40 week due date is based upon Naegele’s Rule. This theory was originated by Harmanni Boerhaave, a botanist who in 1744 came up with a method of calculating the EDD based upon evidence in the Bible that human gestation lasts approximately 10 lunar months. The formula was publicized around 1812 by German obstetrician Franz Naegele and since has become the accepted norm for calculating the due date. There is one glaring flaw in Naegele’s rule. Strictly speaking, a lunar (or synodic – from new moon to new moon) month is actually 29.53 days, which makes 10 lunar months roughly 295 days, a full 15 days longer than the 280 days gestation we’ve been lead to believe is average. In fact, if left alone, 50-80% of mothers will gestate beyond 40 weeks.”
This ritual of creating an “eviction” notice for babies has lead to ridiculously high rates of induced labors and scheduled c-sections under the myth that babies are more likely to be born stillborn after 40 weeks. This is not based on medical evidence, this is based off of one study performed in the 1950s.
To calculate a more accurate due date – first time mothers (nulliparas) pregnancy lasted an average of 288 days (41 weeks 1 day). For multiparas, mothers who had previously given birth, the average gestational length was 283 days or 40 weeks 3 days. To easily calculate this EDD formula, a nullipara would take the LMP, subtract 3 months, then add 15 days. Multiparas start with LMP, subtract 3 months and add 10 days. The best way to determine an accurate due date, no matter which method you use, is to chart your cycles so that you know what day you ovulate.