When are C-sections needed?

Sometimes, C-sections are the safest option for the birth parent and baby. Here are some cases where a C-section might be the best choice:

  • Labor stops. Your labor may stop if your cervix doesn’t open up wide enough to let the baby through. In this case, you would need a C-section to deliver the baby.
  • Your baby’s health is at risk. If your doctor or midwife thinks there might be a problem with your baby’s health.  A C-section can speed the birth and help them treat the baby more quickly.
  • You are carrying more than one baby. If you are giving birth to twins or triplets, a C-section is your safest option, in certain situations.
  • Something is blocking your cervix or vagina. Sometimes, something in your body can block the cervix or the vaginal canal, which keeps the baby from coming out.
  • You have a health concern. If you have a problem with your heart or an infection in your vagina, a C-section is the safest option for you and your baby.
  • You had a C-section before. If you’ve already had a C-section, a vaginal delivery may be an option. Talk to your doctor about what happened with your first C-section, and ask whether you could deliver vaginally this time.  Delivering vaginally after a C-section is called Vaginal Birth After Cesarean or “VBAC” for short.