Vaginal birth

In a vaginal birth the baby comes through the mother's vagina into the world. Most babies are born like this.

Natural delivery: woman giving birth to her baby

Caesarean section (surgical delivery)

The surgical delivery is also known as a caesarean section or c-section. For this, the woman gets an aesthetic, so she does not feel any pain. The doctor makes a cut just above the pubic hair on the woman's stomach. The baby is then pulled out through this cut.

Surgical delivery: doctor performing a caesarian section

Reasons for a caesarean section

These are some of the most common reasons for a caesarean section:

  • The baby's head is too big to fit through the mother's pelvis.
  • The placenta is located in front of the entrance to the uterus (cervix) or the placenta detaches too soon.
  • A part of umbilical cord has slipped out through the entrance of the uterus and is in the vagina. This can cause the baby to suffocate.
  • The baby is not positioned with its head down.
  • There is more than one baby.
  • The mother is HIV-positive.
  • The mother or the child has another illness, which makes a natural birth impossible.
Translate this text into:

Dictionary and translations

Looking for help? Find a health professional.