Physicians Issue New Warning About Water Birthing

b_250_0_16777215_00_images_obgrabber_2014-03_e04c6a9872.jpgiStock/Thinkstock (NEW YORK) -- Celebrity moms, including Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen, more frequently are adopting water-birthing as a natural way of bringing their children into the world. Now, OB-GYNs and pediatricians are weighing in about the birthing method. One word to sum up the new guidelines issued by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Academy of Pediatrics? Caution.

While these experts acknowledge that water immersion during early stages of labor may help women, decreasing pain and shortening labor times, they add that underwater delivery has no benefits and can actually lead to serious health problems in the newborn. Infections, increased chance of umbilical cord damage, breathing problems resulting from the baby inhaling tub water and even seizures are among the health risks they list for water births.

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