Saying No to IV Fluids During Labor: The Unspoken Risks They Won’t Admit

IV Fluids


IV fluids vs Oral fluids in labor and birth 


Run from Outdated Hospital Policies on IV Fluids:


Wouldn’t it be awesome if hospitals handed out a straightforward policy guide during your pregnancy tour? But nah, instead, we’re left decoding medical gibberish, hoping to uncover some truth. As a pregnancy coach, I’m fired up about many routine procedures during labor- but there’s one particular thing that’s got me rolling my eyes: mandatory IV fluids during labor.


Let’s Get Real About IV Fluids:


Forget what you’ve been told – in low-risk pregnancies, credible medical groups don’t stand by that whole ‘no drinking’ nonsense. So why are hospitals clinging to outdated rules? Fear. They’re worried that in the event of an emergency, they wont be able to get a line in. If you find yourself up against a rock and hard place, you can always ask for a Hep lock or a saline lock instead. This allows L&D nurses to have access to an IV port in your hand if needed.


I have to say, if we’re worried that hospital staff can’t administer an IV quickly, we’ve got bigger fish to fry. What irks me more? Giving women in labor an IV line is such a common practice that no one is even taking the time to point out the risks of IV fluids. Some reasons you’re better off drinking fluids orally:


Kiss Freedom of Movement Goodbye

Who the heck wants to be tethered to an IV tower while they’re in active labor? My pregnancy coaching clients will be the first ones to say, F that! Natural birth strategies and alternative pain coping measures almost always include intuitive movement. My clients often switch things up during labor – going from side-lying release to hands and knees, trying out squat positions, getting upright, and even diving into birth pools!


Why You Should Care


Pump in too much IV fluid, and guess what? Your baby’s weight could look off, your breasts might swell up, and breastfeeding could start off rocky. Before you know it you’ll have someone pushing baby formula down your infant’s throat. And that’s not the end – it’s like a domino effect of stress. 


Real-Life Horror Stories


Clients have shared negative experiences with me, like unexpected swollen feet postpartum. I’m talking about being unable to walk without pain. Clients have also admitted to dealing with heavy regrets about not standing up for their preference to hydrate themselves. The risks of IV fluids during labor are not talked about enough between patients and their providers. What happened to informed consent? This is why knowing your options ahead of time and making informed choices during labor and birth is a big freakin’ deal. 


My Passion, Your Power


I’m not just ranting; I’m in your corner, especially if you’re all about that natural, low-intervention birth vibe. Don’t just nod along – question the norm and own your birth plan. Ready to Take Charge? Feeling anxious about the whole birthing scenario? Let’s chat for 15 minutes and plot a game plan for the natural birth you’re after. Knowledge is everything, and being clued in can dodge those unnecessary interventions.


Spread the Word


Know someone prepping for parenthood? Pass this along. Join our gang for the insider scoop on pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum journey. This isn’t just about me being fed up with the medical model – it’s about calling out the system and arming you with the real deal. Let’s rock this journey together.


Grab a copy of my Anxiety-free pregnancy guide here

-Coach Lisa



Dekker, R. (2022, April 15). Evidence on: IV Fluids during labor. Evidence Based Birth. Retrieved July 20, 2023, from

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