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Lamaze

tydr-lamaze-175wWhat is Lamaze?

Lamaze is a natural birth technique created Dr. Fernand Lamaze and introduced to Europe and later American in the 1950's. Lamaze is characterized by its hallmark breathing techniques, which are intended to distract the mother from the pain of childbirth. Lamaze discourages unnecessary medical intervention, but the philosophy and techniques can be applied well in both home and hospital birth scenarios. Lamaze is taught in a classroom environment, through instructors certified by Lamaze International.

Another key element of Lamaze is its philosophy of support during birth. The method endorses education for both the mothers and their labor coaches—a role which is often filled by the baby's father. In fact, the introduction of Lamaze coincides with the sharp increase of father being present in hospital delivery rooms, from something that was almost unheard of in 1950's America to what is now considered standard.

 

Lamaze is perhaps the most widely known method of natural birth, and has garnered a great deal of attention in pop culture and the media. It has been featured in books, films, comic books, and numerous well known and popular television shows, and often played for comedic effect.

Where Can I Learn More About Lamaze?

An excellent resource for the Lamaze method is Thank You, Dr. Lamaze (9 June 2005), written by Marjorie and Alex Karmel. The book is a firsthand personal account of the authors' experience with the Lamaze method, and in fact introduced the technique to the United States.