History of Water Birth
According to historians, Water Birth can be traced to ancient Egyptian times. As depicted in heiroglyphs found in Egypt, it is believed that some of the Pharaohs may have been born in water. The first Water Birth of written record took place in France in 1803 when a mother whose labor had been extremely difficult and long was placed in a tub of warm water and helped to finally give birth. In the 1970's, French and Russian midwives and doctors began to explore alternative ways of helping the baby make the transition from womb to outside life as easy as possible.
Using warm water seemed to not only help women cope better with the pain associated with childbirth, but also appeared to offer babies a more peaceful journey from the womb into their mother's arms. The midwives and doctors began to see how calm babies were after they had been born in water and noted that they cried less than babies born on land. They also observed that newborns appeared more relaxed and ready to breastfeed sooner and were ready to make eye contact with their mothers.
Water Birth Today
Since the emergence of Baby Stories on TV, *Water Birth* is much more widely known about today than it was 10 years ago. With features of "A Baby Story" and "House of Babies" on The Learning Channel, women are being exposed to the benefits of using water in their labor and birth. Through television and the internet, women are learning about their choices in birth and are able to explore their options long before they deliver. By having facts about Water Birth and information to support their goals, women are talking to their midwives & doctors about their birth plans and are able to discuss options months in advance.
http://www.truebluetherapy.com/benefitsofwaterbirth/history.html - History of Waterbirth
www.birthbalance.com/herstory.shtml - more on the history of water birth.