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ACOG’s NEW Recommendations on Limiting Interventions, with Sharon Muza

The Birthful Podcast: Episode #99

In this episode we talk about the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ new recommendations on “Limiting Interventions during Labor and Birth”. Do you need to be continuously monitored? Does your bag of waters need to be broken? Do you have to hold your breath to push? How about IV fluids? It turns out that “many common obstetric practices are of limited or uncertain benefit”, and it’s time to change things up. Sharon Muza tells us more. Check it out!


To listen here, click the play button on the player above, or click the button below to listen in iTunes.


What we talked about:

  • What’s so exciting about this Committee Opinion from ACOG?
  • Acknowledging the fact that how you feel about your birth matters
  • Acknowledging that each birth can be treated differently, not just as a sum of routine practices in a cookie cutter approach
  • Iatrogenic: relating to illness caused by medical examination or treatment
  • If you’re not in active labor, stay home! (And how to know if it’s time to go)
  • How is active labor defined?
  • What if your water breaks and you are not in labor? Do you have to rush to the hospital?
  • How doulas help to lessen your need for interventions
  • To artificially break your bag of waters or not break? There’s an answer to that question
  • Does your baby’s heartbeat need to be monitored continuously?
  • There are other ways to relieve pain besides an epidural
  • Moving to feel better, moving to help baby into a better position
  • Holding your breath and counting to 10 while pushing is no better than doing something else
  • Don’t feel like pushing just yet? It’s OK to take a break
  • You don’t need IV fluids as a matter of fact; we’ll get back to you on the whole eating-during-labor thing
  • How Lamaze’s Healthy Birth Practices are ACOG approved (go Lamaze!)


This episode is brought to you by Natural Breastfeeding,
and their FREE Quick Start Video. Go watch it at

and also by Megan Othling, of


Additional fabulous resources and articles:


Headshot Sharon Muza
Courtesy of Sharon Muza

About Sharon Muza

Sharon Muza, BS, CD(DONA) BDT(DONA), LCCE, FACCE has been an active childbirth professional since 2004, teaching Lamaze classes and providing doula services to hundreds of couples through her private practice in Seattle, Washington. She is an instructor at the Simkin Center, Bastyr University where she is a birth doula trainer. Sharon is also a trainer with Passion for Birth, a Lamaze-Accredited Childbirth Educator Program. Sharon is a former co-leader of the International Cesarean Awareness Network’s (ICAN) Seattle Chapter, and a former board member of PALS Doulas and Past President of REACHE.  In September 2011, Sharon was admitted as a Fellow to the Academy of Certified Childbirth Educators. Sharon Muza has been the community manager, writer and editor for Science & Sensibility, Lamaze International’s blog for birth professionals, since 2012. She also is the blog manager DONA International and their blog DONA Doula Chronicles. Sharon was awarded Lamaze International’s Media Award in 2015, for promoting normal birth. Sharon enjoys active online engagement and facilitating discussion around best practice, current research and its practical application to community standards and actions by health care providers, and how that affects families in the childbearing year. Sharon has been a dynamic speaker at international conferences on topics of interest to birth professionals and enjoys collaborating with others to share ideas and information that benefit birth professionals and families. To learn more about Sharon, you are invited to visit her website,



Like the music on the podcast?:

Title music:Vibe Aceby Kevin MacLeod, from the Free Music Archive / CC BY (edited for length).

Sponsorship music:Air Hockey Saloon” by Chris Zabriskie, from the Free Music Archive / CC BY (edited for length).

Adriana Lozada