Birth and afterbirth

The childbirth process

  • Cervix thins and dilates during labor. As your baby moves through your pelvis, her head usually rotates to face your spine.
  • As your uterus pushes your baby through your pelvis, her head begins to show, or "crown."
  • After most of your baby's head is born, her shoulders move through your pelvis and she begins to rotate again.
  • After your baby's head and shoulders are born, the rest of her body slips out.

Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Beginnings: Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond, seventh edition, ob-ah-90026
First Published: 10/04/2002
Last Reviewed: 12/02/2015