There is a huge chance that you’ve heard the term ‘childbearing hips‘ a lot more than often. Other than being objectified or complemented (as per the tone and situation), what does it really mean? Is it literally the ability of the woman to bear children? Let’s get a better understanding with the help of the article below and know its exact meaning and things around the word – child-bearing hips!
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“Childbearing hips” What Do People Mean By This Term?
First things first, with no objectification, describing a woman’s hips as “childbearing” doesn’t indicate some sort of a magical birth canal that she possesses in comparison to other women.
In fact, in the simplest of terms, it refers to the structure of the pelvic that the woman in question possesses. In other words, the hips that are larger and wider are termed childbearing hips.
Having said that, the shape of the pelvic isn’t of a certain ‘kind,’ but differs from woman to woman. There are a few women who are born with hips that have a wider pelvis that happens to make giving both easier.
Digging a little deeper, in the 1930s, the pelvis was divided into four shapes:
1) Gynaecoid Pelvis
Here, the pelvis is shallow and wide. When a gynaecoid pelvic woman gives birth, there happens to be more room for the baby to pass through during delivery.
That means the woman who is described to have childbearing hips, in most cases is likely to have a gynaecoid-shaped pelvis, the most favorable for labor and delivery.
2) Anthropoid Pelvis
This hip structure is wide from the right to left that makes the hips look wider from front to back.
Here, if you have an anthropoid pelvis, you would carry most of the weight in your abdomen and buttocks. It’s less open and might take longer to deliver a baby, that is, not as smooth as in a gynaecoid pelvis.
3) Android Pelvis
Not your phones, but this shape is mostly seen in taller women who happen to have smaller buttock muscles with a narrow pubic arch. With this shape, it gets a little tacky for the baby to “come out” during childbirth.
Not to get disheartened, it is completely normal to have a vaginal birth, only that it might take more time than expected.
4) Platypelloid pelvis
This pelvis shape is the narrowest amongst all and can take slightly longer to give birth as the baby could take longer to enter the pelvis. As opposed to the android pelvis that has a narrow pubic arch, Platypelloid has a wider sub-pubic arch.
Having said that, once the baby enters the pelvis, it becomes much easier to deliver.
Then and Now!
In earlier times, the pelvis and the childbearing ease of the women were examined through an X-ray to determine if the women will be able to have a relatively easy vaginal birth or not.
As off-setting, as it is, fortunately, the examination and determination through a pelvic X-ray is no longer a part of the prenatal checkup, and the pelvis structure is understood by the structure of the individual.
Having said that, you must understand and be clear that having a certain kind of a pelvic shape doesn’t indicate the ease of birth, or tell you if you can expect a vaginal delivery or a cesarean delivery. In fact, there are many factors that determine the role of childbirth.
Do Childbearing Hips Make Giving Birth Easy?
In straight and simple words, yes! Having child-bearing hips (wider) could make childbirth easier. The reason being, wider hips provide plenty of room that allows the baby to pass through the pelvic bones.
But, it’s not the hip size alone that affects the birth experience. For instance, as per a few studies, women with “childbearing hips” have had difficulties in delivering, and those who have narrower pelvises have had it easier.
To help you understand better, here are some other factors that play a role when giving birth:
1) The Size of the Baby
This is one factor that greatly influences the process of childbirth. Although in most cases, women with wider hips deliver faster and smoother delivery, it might not be true when delivering a large baby.
2) The Position of the Baby
This is another factor that determines if the birth would be easy or hard.
In general and expected cases, the babies in a “head-down” position are easier to give birth to as compared to those who move into a breech position, that is, bottom down.
3) Your Health
It is absolutely important for you to take care of your health as it is one of the major factors that influence the birth of the baby.
When delivering a baby vaginally, it requires a lot of energy on your part, and if you’re sick or have a medical condition it can surely limit your energy and physical strength. It also makes it difficult to push effectively, causing the delivery to be prolonged.
4) Strength of the Contraction
Uterine contractions, that is, the tightening and relaxing of the uterus muscles help to push the baby from the birth canal.
Therefore, if the contractions aren’t strong enough, then the delivery could take a lot of time.
Note – Although there are certain factors that influence birth, you must understand that women of any size and shape have the ability to birth babies who are of all sizes and shapes.
To Conclude: Evolution When Preparing for Childbirth
The body of a woman is designed to birth a baby and as and when you get closer to your due date and experience labor, the pelvic floor will automatically stretch and relax to help prepare for the delivery. This is where your body releases the hormone relaxin.
Here, the bones of the pelvic begin to slightly separate from each other, allowing the baby to move through the pelvic joints. Although the ligaments present around the pelvis relax, it does not change.
Therefore, you may be of any shape and size, the process of birthing is your ball to roll!
Child-bearing hips FAQs
1) What are childbearing hips?
The term ‘childbearing’ refers to the structure of the pelvic that the woman in question possesses. In other words, the hips that are larger and wider are termed childbearing hips.
2) Does giving birth widen your hips?
It is completely natural for the hips to widen during pregnancy. This is in anticipation of pushing the baby through the birth canal during childbirth.
With the help of the hormone – Relaxin, the pelvis joints and ligaments are released. This impacts the structure and widens the hips during childbirth.
3) When during pregnancy do the hips widen?
The body begins to lose the ligaments during the early stages of pregnancy and aids in handling the different centers of gravity. This allows the expansion of the uterus as early as in the first trimester where the hip begins to widen and the rib cage flares.