The increasing number of women undergoing elective C-sections may be motivated less by convenience or aesthetics and more by apprehension: Swedish researchers writing in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology spoke to close to 500 first-time mothers about 37 weeks into their pregnancies and again three months after the births and discovered that almost half of the women who chose Caesareans suffered from a "clinically significant" fear of childbirth.

These women also mentioned that they felt less happy before the delivery and were afraid their child would die. Dr Ingela Wiklund, from the division of obstetrics and gynaecology at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, led the study. She said "Women suffering from significant childbirth fear indicate that they are less self-confident, unhappy, afraid that the child will be injured and don't long for the child. This clearly emphasizes the need for pre- and post-natal support."


As far as we can tell, the study makes no mention of tokophobia (a "pathological" fear of giving birth that can result in self-induced abortions), or pre-natal depression, pointing instead to friends and family who scare first-timers with their own upsetting birth stories. But (not so) seriously, people: Perhaps these hysterical, hormonal women simply need an amazing delivery-room orgasm?

Earlier: Scared To Give Birth? Uh, Don't Read This Story
Orgasmic Childbirth: We Are Not Making This Up
Related: At Last, Prenatal Depression Is Being Taken Seriously [Guardian]