More moms choosing to give birth at home
Around the country more people are having babies in a seemingly unconventional way. Home births have gone up nearly 30 percent over the last five years according to the National Center for Health Statistics.
Little Eli Smittle and baby Bell Bowden are a lot alike. They both live in Conway and weighed more than 8 pounds when born about two months ago. They're also pretty close to perfect according to their moms.
"I look at her, I'm like wow I created that! how did that happen!"said Anna Bowden.
"He's a very calm, laid back, easy going baby," said Leslie Smittle.
Both beautiful babies have something unusual in common. They were both born in the comfort of their own homes.
Scotty and Leslie Smittle had their sixth child in their bedroom with a midwife. The couple even had a professional photographer document the birth. They say it was the right choice for their family.
"It's just such a natural beautiful moment for our whole family to be together in our home and just be relaxed and comfortable," said Bowden.
Kraig Bowden caught his baby daughter inside a birthing tub placed in their kitchen. His wife Anna decided on a home birth after months of research. She says the wait was worth it.
"Probably the best part is how intimate and special it is," said Bowden.
Dr. Curtis Lowery, the chairman of the OBGYN department at UAMS is supportive of women who want to have a home birth as long as they have qualified medical personnel on hand and understand that there are increased risks.
"You can't predict all the complications prior to onset of labor and 40% of labor complications can't be predicted in advance of the delivery," said Dr. Curtis Lowery.
Both the Bowdens and Smittles agree that a home birth is not a fit for every family, it just was for theirs.
"We couldn't imagine doing a hospital birth again," said Smittles.
"I can't imagine giving birth any other way," said Bowden.