There are many topics that are controversial when it comes
to taking care of an infant and giving birth. The two controversial topics that
are going to be discussed, in this paper, are home birth vs hospital birth and
the benefits and disadvantages of swaddling an infant.
There are different views to where a
birth should be take place, which are at a hospital or in the person’s own home.
Home births are beneficial because it can cost less, and the family is in a familiar
setting where they have more control over the experience. The main benefit to a
hospital birth is that it is safer for the mother and baby.
One benefit to doing a home birth is
that it cost less than giving birth in a hospital. Families do not have to pay
for the delivery charges. One study found that planned home birth with a
midwife, costs $2275, compared to a hospital birth with a midwife, which cost $4613
(Janssen, 2015). In this study, physician fees, hospital charges, and pharmaceuticals
were lower for home births. Health insurance can also play a big part of the
cost of giving birth. Depending on what kind of health insurance the family has,
it sometimes covers lots of the charges that are attached to giving birth, in a
hospital, like inpatient service and newborn care, but some insurance companies
do not cover this, and some do not cover home birth, either (eHealth, 2018). For
most part, home births are cheaper then hospital births.
Home birth has the benefit of being in
a familiar place. The mother is surrounded by things that make her comfortable
and relaxed. The family also has more control over the birthing plan since
there are no nurses or doctors who must follow certain protocols, compared to when
the family is in the hospital.
The cost might be cheaper, and the family
might have familiar surroundings but that one major disadvantage of giving
birth at home, is the safety of the mother and the baby. One issue with home safety,
is how clean the house is. The family can clean and sterilize the house as much
as they can, but the hospital option would still be cleaner. This can cause a
greater risk of bacterial infection, to the mother, since she is exposed during
Another issue with home safety is that it does not
have all the medical equipment like a hospital. Mothers’ can have physicians or
midwives with them during the birth but in a hospital, you have many doctors
and nurses walking around. The family has all the medical attention they can have,
if they need it. The last major reason hospital births are safer is because the
mother has rapid care if something goes wrong or she must get a C-section. Emergency C-sections need to be done in
minutes. If a mother is in her own home and must go to the hospital, she must
wait for the ambulances or have someone drive her, and depending on where her home
is located, it may not be a quick trip, which could cause harm to the mother or
baby. Safety is a major benefit to giving birth in a hospital over a home, but usually
women who are told they will have a high-risk birth did not do home births.
Home births can cost less and let the mother give births
in a familiar area, but the hospital has the benefit of safety behind it. Home births
and hospitals is just one controversial issue when it comes to the topic of children.
Another issue is swaddling.
There are advantages and disadvantages when babies are
swaddled. The advantages are that it will help the baby sleep better and reduce
the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. The disadvantages are that is can
overheat the baby and it can interfere breastfeeding for a newborn.
Swaddling a baby can be beneficial because it can help
the baby sleep better at night. When a baby is swaddled, it will teach their body
that it is time for bed, and therefore, will become tired more easily, if the
baby is swaddled around the same time at night. Another reason it will help a
baby sleep at night, is that when babies are tightly wrapped it makes them feel
like they are wrapped in their mothers’ arms which calms a baby down (Heim, 2008).
Research done at the University Children’s Hospital found that when a baby is
swaddled, it helps babies stay in NREM sleep longer and helps them wake up less
during the night (cited in Heim, 2008).
Another benefit to swaddling is that is reduces the
risk of sudden infant death syndrome (also known as SIDS). SIDS happens when a
baby sleeps on their stomach. Swaddling babies forces the babies to sleep on
their back since there are wrapped tightly stopping them from moving around and
turning onto their side or stomach (Krisberg, 2016). Although swaddling can stop
a baby from rolling over, there is still a risk that a baby can break out of the
wrapped blanket and roll over onto their stomach (Heim, 2008). Babies should also
not be swaddled when they get older because there is a higher risk of SIDS (Krisberg,
A disadvantage to swaddling babies is that the baby
can overheat. Swaddling can help babies keep warm and make them feel
comfortable, but if the parent is not paying attention or leaves the baby overnight
in a tight blanket, the baby could overheat causing hyperthermia. When babies are
wrapped tightly, they cannot release heat from their body’s, instead the heat is
trapped in the blanket and is reflected onto the baby, so the baby cannot lower
their body temperature (Medbroadcast, 2017). Skin to skin contact has also shown
to help a baby regulate a good body temperature, instead of being wrapping babies
in a blanket (Mohrbacher, 2010).
Another disadvantage to swaddling, is that it can interfere
with a newborn’s breastfeeding. A study done showed that babies who were swaddled
by their mothers for two hours, compared to babies that we held by their
mothers, with skin to skin contact, had a harder time breastfeeding (Mohrbacher,
2010). The reason babies have a harder time breast feeding when they are
swaddling right away, compared to skin to skin contact, is because skin to skin
contact reduces the stress of just being born. Skin to skin contact also lets
the baby move around, which helps them locate the nipple easier (Medbroadcast,
help babies sleep and reduced the risk of SIDS, but it can also overheat babies
and interfere with breastfeeding. There are many controversial topics in this
world when it comes to taking care of an infant and giving birth. Home birth versus
hospital birth and the benefits versus disadvantages of swaddling are just two
of the many controversial topics that were covered in this paper.