Midwifery is a profession in which midwives provide care to childbearing women before, during and after pregnancy. Midwives have been mentioned in the Old Testament and in documents from ancient Egyptians and ancient Greeks. Midwives are trained to assist with labour and birth and handle certain more difficult deliveries such as breech births and twin births using non-invasive techniques.
Midwives can also help care for the newborn and assist with breastfeeding. Additionally, they can provide birth control, prescriptions and education for well-woman health care. They can also help with family planning and menopausal care. Midwives can work in a variety of different settings, including hospitals, birthing centers and the home.
This is a regulated profession in many countries and requires an undergraduate education degree. These programs use a combination of theory and hands on clinical practice. A “Lay Midwife” is an uncertified or unlicensed traditional midwife who had informal education such as self-study or apprenticeship rather than through a formal program.
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