Narrator: This is Science Today. It's pretty standard for working mothers to take maternity leave after the birth of a baby, but a new study highlights the importance of taking maternity leave before delivery, too. Sylvia Guendelman, a professor of Maternal and Child Health at the University of California, Berkeley's School of Public Health, says their study linked maternity leave taken before delivery to fewer caesarean sections.
Guendelman: There was a four-fold reduced odds of a caesarean section delivery. We also found that among women who have very stressful jobs were also more likely to increase their gestational age for the baby and so these are important findings that suggest if women take leave prior to delivery, they are perhaps more likely to have better birth outcomes.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.