So, you want to attempt a VBAC in the Northern Virginia area? Here are some tips to help you.

1. Start attending ICAN meetings. These occur once a month, typically the third Wednesday of the month and third Saturday, alternating months. You'll meet all sorts of people here - people who have had VBACs, people who are pregnant again, people who have just had a c-section, even new moms who are pregnant for the first time. We typically have around 20 people at a meeting and our meetings last around 3 hours. Come and go as you like and no need to RSVP or join ICAN to attend meetings.

2. Find your doctor or midwife. If you are planning a hospital birth, check out physician rates on the Virginia Health Information network. The World Health Organization states that a country should have a 15% primary c-section rate. So, you may want to find physicians that have a low primary c-section rate and a low repeat c-section rate. Virginia Health Information

Also, look outside the box. At the NIH conference, we learned that women are more likely to attempt a VBAC if they are using a Family Practitioner for a VBAC attempt or if they are delivering at a teaching hospital. Also, consider a home birth midwife.

Meeting handout: Is Your Provider VBAC Friendly?

3. Read, read, read. Ina May Gaskin is inspirational. Henci Goer's book: The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth is a great read too.

4. Have faith in your body. This is very important. Don't be discouraged if your first c-section was for Failure to Progress or because you had a large baby. We have had several women who had c-sections for those reasons the first time around and the next time around they successfully deliver vaginally.

About ICAN

The International Cesarean Awareness Network, Inc. (ICAN) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve maternal-child health by reducing preventable cesareans through education, supporting cesarean recovery, and advocating for vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). Learn More About ICAN