All new mothers hope that their baby will be happy and healthy when they’re born. However, some doctors or other medical staff members can cause serious harm to your child if they make poor decisions during delivery.

A birth injury happens when your otherwise healthy child suffers an injury during or after the birthing process. A doctor’s inattentiveness, irresponsibility or inexperience are usually factors that result in a birth injury. Here are just three specific ways a doctor’s negligence in the delivery room can harm your child.

Inattention to oxygen levels

Labor can be a long, drawn-out process for many mothers. During this time, it’s crucial that your baby continues to get enough oxygen while they make their way through the birth canal. This means making sure that the umbilical cord is free of severe compression. Doctors should also take care not to cut the umbilical cord prematurely.

While it is not uncommon for the umbilical cord to wrap around a baby’s neck during birth, it is crucial that a doctor notices any problems such as this and takes the necessary steps to fix it or otherwise safely speed up the birth process so that your baby can take their first breath.

Improper use of birth tools

Sometimes, doctors need to use tools to help deliver your baby. Forceps, for example, are a tool that can help pull your child through the birth canal if you need assistance pushing. However, if a doctor uses a tool improperly or incorrectly, your child might fall victim to serious injuries such as cuts, tears, bruising or even dislocation.

Failure to perform a C-section

Sometimes, your doctor might schedule a C-section ahead of time for the safety of the baby. But in other cases, emergency C-sections are necessary to deliver your baby safely and healthily.

One common instance when a C-section is necessary is when your child has shoulder dystocia. This means that one or both of your baby’s shoulders are stuck in the birth canal. With proper knowledge and careful maneuvering, many doctors can safely deliver a child despite shoulder dystocia. But failure to notice shoulder dystocia or disregard safe protocol can cause serious injuries such as spinal damage, which can sometimes lead to Erb’s palsy.

A birth injury can change your child’s life

No mother should ever have to see their newborn suffer from a birth injury. Birth injuries can lead to some long-lasting consequences that will affect your child’s growth and development. What can make it even more devastating is the knowledge that most birth injuries are entirely preventable. If your child was the victim of a doctor’s negligence during delivery, don’t hesitate to hold the responsible medical staff member accountable.