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In the weeks leading up to a baby's arrival, the mother's body prepares for the delivery of her child through a series of physiological changes. In the final stages, contractions in the uterus send signals to the brain that it is time for the birth. While delivering a child may not be easy, it is straightforward, biologically speaking. A woman's body has everything she needs to ensure her baby's safe arrival. For nine months, she has been getting to know her baby through sonograms and fetal movements. Delivery day allows mother and child to finally meet face-to-face.

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1. The Baby Enters the Pelvis

When the cervical tissue thins and the cervix becomes dilated to 10 centimeters, the expectant mother has reached the second stage of labor. It is time for the baby to be born. At this point, she may feel some burning near the perineum. Most babies enter the pelvis with the head facing to one side. They then rotate to face downward, toward the small of the mother's back. Delivery presentation is the baby's position as it comes down the birth canal. About 97% of babies are in the cephalic, or head-down position, the optimal position for childbirth.

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This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.