“What to Know:
- Research shows that routine directed pushing, breath holding, and limiting pushing during labor is not beneficial, and that prolonged breath holding may reduce fetal oxygenation.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends not directing laboring women to hold their breath or consciously sustain pushing.
- The American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM) recommends that a laboring woman’s body direct any pushing.
- Directed pushing may help you if you’ve had an epidural and don’t feel the urge to push.”