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Thread: Labour with no drugs?

  1. #19

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    I did hypnobirthing (also known as calm birthing) and like Lucy said... AMAZING! It was my first experience of labour as my first was a c/s .. and I LOVED it and actually didn't feel pain, felt some discomfort but not pain. 3 1/2 hours and he was born. I don't have anything bad to say about it at all. My advice though, which has been said by a few already... is yes have your plan but be open minded about it. I went in wanting drug free and got it, but I was also open to things changing if need be. All the best!!!


  2. #20

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    I have had 2 waterbirths, 1 i was asking for an epidural (posterior bub) but i had gone from 10 cm back to 5 cm and when they broke my waters she was born within 5 minutes. I found Gas useless as the water gave the same amount of relief and sped up my labours, my longest was only 5 hours from established labour. it can be done and i believe visualisation was very helpful for me. this may sound strange, but my DH has big ears. i was imagining that the girls both had big ears and once i got the ears out it would be easy rofl! but seriously it helped!

  3. #21

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    hey there! I had a natual birth with no drugs and ended up with no tears or cuts!
    Im the biggest sook and HATE pain. But 4 some reason when ur in labour that all goes out the window. I think coz we're built 4 it!
    I didn't hate giving birth, i was one of the lucky ones though, many could tell horror stories, but ones like mine do exsist.
    I think the mummy's can do there best but in the end it's all up 2 bubs and how they want 2 make it on mummy!
    Good luck with it all, it's a beautiful amazing experience and just think when ur in pain
    "It's not going 2 last 4 ever, and at the end i meet my lil wonder thats been growing inside me."

  4. #22

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    I think when it comes to being open about things, we're all different in that. I can't be open about it, I had to know exactly what I wanted to achieve and why and implement it. The first time I went into labour, I had a "keep your options open" mentality and I ended up on the cascade of interventions - epidural, which messed up both mine and baby's heart rate, syntocinon to speed things up cos of the effects of the epi, and eventually c section. This is very common, exactly that order, for a ridiculously large amount of women. Even the Pink Kit says several times in large bold letters, "Hope is not a plan".

    This time, I have firmly shut the door on intervention, I'm homebirthing with a doula and a midwife. I am much more educated about birth now and like Kelly said, the Pink Kit is MIRACULOUS, totally recommended. Juju's stuff however, made me want to puke. On every single page she stresses how horrific labour is and how squeezing a ball will distract you through it... no surprises that her protege Sarah Murdoch ended up not coping during her labour (or so I heard).

    In other cultures, women not only prepare mentally for the birth by attending births throughout their lives and therefore have a realistic idea of what birth is and the normalcy of it, but they also prepare physically. Being a little fit, or at least have endurance ability, being rested, doing weeks of internal vaginal massage to relax and prepare the tissues to stretch = all these things help a natural birth.

    You won't get medals for not using drugs, but, of all the information I've learned over this last year one thing stands out: who cares about medals when you get to properly bond with baby, and work in a natural fashion with your body, and don't risk fetal issues during labour? I know from my first labour that labour is extremely intense, and without support it is overwhelmingly so; but by the same token, it's a short time in a lifetime. I've left myself no option but to get this baby out naturally, so my motto is "this will be over soon... this will be over soon..." oh, and several other things I picked up from the Pink Kit.
    Last edited by Fire; February 20th, 2008 at 07:38 PM. Reason: insert "not", my poor placenta brain!

  5. #23

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    I respectfully disagree. I didn't find that Juju Sundin emphasised that labour is horrific - I think she was honest and she said it was painful. I think if you asked 100 women if labour is painful - 95 would say yes. Not unbearable obviously but painful yes. I used stress balls and they worked for me for a very long time.

  6. #24

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    Everyone has a totally different birthing experience as we are all different!

    My experience was not what I wanted! I had been going to yoga and learnig breathing techniques and meditation to prepare for a totally drug free natural birth!
    I was never affraid of giving birth as I kept telling myself "its a good pain" and think of what it will bring you in the end!
    When I went into labour it was the most intense pain I have ever felt! Now I am pretty tough and nothing really phases me but OMG wow this was something I was not expecting! I went for about 10 hours on my own, and then began screaming for the gas! Gas is the most useless thing in my opinion, it did absolutely nothing! The pain was getting worse and my waters hadnt even broken so they did that for me and I then asked for pethadine! Now this is happening while my beautiful mantra music is playing and my husband being so very supportive! After another couple of hours I had had enough! I am petrifed of needles in my spine and said no way am I having an epidurial! But I was giving up and my poor DH was so so upset seeing me in pain that he said do what you think is right! So I had the epidural! It was bliss! But I never got to feel the sensation of actually giving birth! Myles was born with an episotimy and forceps, which has traumatised me for a long time! But he was safe and I was safe and the bond we had when they put him on my chest was amazing! In that moment I forgot all the pain!

    So the moral to my ridiculously long post is YOU have to decide what is right! Dont be affraid! And always have options!Dont feel pressured into doing a way you dont want, listen to your body and make sure your support person is prepared to see you in pain! Just remeber once that concraction is gone its one less you have to feel! I hope I helped a little! Good luck! You never know you may have a super easy birth *crosses fingers*!

  7. #25

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    Juju's stuff however, made me want to puke. On every single page she stresses how horrific labour is and how squeezing a ball will distract you through it... no surprises that her protege Sarah Murdoch ended up not coping during her labour
    fantastic description The Earthern Clan
    and the protege had an epidural and an instrumental delivery

    this book is written from a very obstetric and medical point of view where the focus is that labor is pain. I totally disagree with the writings in this book

    yes labor is intense and for some painful, but dont fall for the old 'its how we say it is so this is the way its meant to be'

    the sensations of labor and birth can be interpretted as pain, but is this perhaps in some way attributable to many, many years of women passing their suffering on as a rite of passage (Eve must suffer for her sins). Lack of education, horrendous intervention to save the soul of the baby at the demise of the mother, and no support are all key factors in the growth of the scare mongering that is alive and flourishing in childbirth today

    childbirth has been medicalised and controlled since the church took over, and midwives where burnt at the stake

    I had a terrible first birth...I was fearful and did not let go and be with my birthing body

    2nd birth I practiced a form of hypnobirthing, and it was the most amazing experience. Intense yes, painful right at the height of the contractions in transition yes, but nothing I could not cope with and when Jay was birthed just a wonderful opening sensation

    if you think labor and birth will hurt then you are already setting yourself up to find the pain

    I'll get off my box now

    x

  8. #26

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    I had a very natural birth without drugs and delivered my DD on my knees in the shower...i had no tears/no cuts...having said that, this wasn't my plan!

    I did my research, made sure I was aware of all my options (my hospital didn't offer epidural unless for emergency so wasn't concerned about that at all). I also read 'Active Birth', had a fantastic support person (my husband) who was well aware of my wishes and also did research with me. I went in with an open mind and then went with the flow. Yes the labour was painful, but there were rest periods in between, it wasn't a pain that was scary cause it meant there was going to be a good ending, and i knew that there would be ann ending. I found it more tiring than painful. I would happily do my labour again, i'm not so keen on doing the pregnancy again yet, lol. Good luck!! It's amazing!!

  9. #27
    paradise lost Guest

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    You can absolutely get through labour without drugs if it is what you want.

    I used gas for about an hour of my labour. It was about 90minutes since i'd been examined (and found to be 50% effaced, 2-3cm dilated) and i was having a "premature" pushing urge so they gave me the gas to help me handle it. After an hour of breathing gas and roaring through peaks to avoid pushing, her head crowned. I had been fully dilated afterall. I pushed once and she was born ears to toes in that one push.

    "They" might not hand out medals for going drug free but "I" give me a medal. I am INCREDIBLY proud of myself, of my body and of my beautiful baby. An unmedicated homebirth was what i wanted and given the "active" phase of my labour was under 4 hours and very intense, i COULD NOT be more proud of myself. I cannot WAIT to birth again (next time i'm going to have a 2nd stage! LOL) and i won't bother with the gas now i know i can truly trust my body (i.e. push when it tells me to).

    Yes, it hurt, but it wasn't the worst pain of my life (that was twisting my ankle and tearing the ligaments) and in between contractions it completely went away. I never felt pain anywhere on my belly, just at my cervix. My midwives commented how relaxed i seemed in between contractions (i was concentrating REALLY hard on relaxing fully to get the best rest possible between contractions) and they later said that would have helped me feel less pain as i was welcoming the contractions consciously and not fighting them. If you fight you tense up and tight muscles ache more, especially when there's a straining uterus contracting underneath them.

    I'm a survivor of sexual abuse, and learned as a small child to "shut down" or disassociate from any pain, especially anything to do with my sexual organs. It took ALL of my concentration to stay in the moment and keep focused and relaxed while my body laboured and it was SO worth it. It healed me in many ways, after things being done to me for all those years, birth was something I did, and i did not allow my past to interfere. I am changed since my birth, for the better.

    For me having as natural a birth as possible was incredibly important, and for that reason i am deeply proud of my achievments. I absolutely feel i have a medal, heck i have the World Cup! For me it isn't about comparison with another woman. I loved every minute of birth, even the tougher bits, and i can't wait to do it again. If another woman had the same feelings of joy and desire to do it again from having an epidural then good on her. A good labour is one where mum and baby are healthy and mum feels empowered in her abilities as a birther and a mother.

    If you feel it is very important to go drug free, don't let others tell you it isn't and if you feel that for you it isn't, don't let people make you go through anything you don't want to.

    Bx

  10. #28
    cari28 Guest

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    You are doing well to start looking into pain control before going to the hospital. I am a labor and delivery nurse and I'm not going to lie...birthing babies is a painful experience. Where I work, the majority of women have epidurals and love them, some opt for iv pain medication such as stadol, demerol, or morphine, and a few others go all natural. But most women at the end want something for the pain, however when you get nearly all the way dilated pain medication cannot be administered because there is not enough time for it to wear off of the baby. If pain medication is given to close to delivery the baby usually recieves a Narcan shot to reverse the effects of the medication received during labor.
    My suggestion look into your options and discuss your plans and thoughts with your physician or midwife.

    Good luck!

  11. #29

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    Labour hurts! I focused on the fact that with that pain my baby was moving closer to being born. With my first I had pethidine which didn't really help except I was stoned afterwards. My second birth was quick but just as painful and I didn't have any pain relief. I loved the shower. I must say I recovered much faster from my second birth.

    If you think you need pain relief ask for it. If you would like a birth without pain relief makes sure everybody knows it. Everyone is different and you shouldn't feel pressured to have the 'perfect birth'. What you want now as a pain free person many change once you have established labour!

    My only advice is don't be afraid of labour because you will do it!

  12. #30

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    Like my article, I believe you are more likely to have a low intervention birth if you know why you don't want it and understand the pro's and con's of everything. If you go in there with the idea you want a natural birth, what's gonna hold you to that? Whereas if you know that (for example) pethidine is one of the top 2 drugs that the leading expert on drugs and breastfeeding says is contraindicated and says avoid it at all costs because of it's effects on breastfeeding establishment, it has a long half life in your baby's system (24hrs?) etc... then of course you will be more determined not to have it. Research, have a plan but plan for all situtations so you are taken seriously and respected. Plans include how you would like c/s to go, inductions that are medically necessary etc.

    No you don't get awards for not having drugs - like Bec said you certainly feel like you have one afterwards because of the massive high - but the best thing is knowing that your baby and yourself are both unaffected from side affects and have less risk of complications. Thats gotta be worth something.
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children
    Author of Want To Be A Doula? Everything You Need To Know
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  13. #31

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    With all 3 of my babies I have had no drugs and yes it did hurt!!! but you go with what you feel you can cope with if you are at the point where you can take it anymore then take the drugs... I know for me I have very short labor the longest was 4hrs so by the time I am screaming for the drug ( and yes do I scream I think the whole hospital can hear me.) its too late so my advice would be go in there with no expectations and just see how you go, but if you feel you want the drugs try not to leave it to late...In the end its up to you if you have them or not and its up to you who you tell that you had them..

  14. #32

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    You are doing well to start looking into pain control before going to the hospital. I am a labor and delivery nurse and I'm not going to lie...birthing babies is a painful experience. Where I work, the majority of women have epidurals and love them, some opt for iv pain medication such as stadol, demerol, or morphine, and a few others go all natural. But most women at the end want something for the pain, however when you get nearly all the way dilated pain medication cannot be administered because there is not enough time for it to wear off of the baby. If pain medication is given to close to delivery the baby usually recieves a Narcan shot to reverse the effects of the medication received during labor.
    cari28 I do not mean to offend you in any way, but this is a very obstetric view point, and not one at all that I think is helpful in childbirth

    as a labor and delivery nurse you would mostly see obstetric birth, and I am not sure what type of training you would have had but this is certainly not a midwifery viewpoint

    what type of antenatal education do the women you care for receive?and what type of support are they offered in labor?

    if all they are taught is that labor will be horrendous and painful and we can help with an epidural, then of course this is all they will know and all they will seek

    x

  15. #33

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    When I birthed in a hospital I used pain relief. It was there, I hurt, and I took it. I was scared and overwhelmed by the pain. I regret not having a doula. I also had the shot both times about 45 minutes before the baby was born. Too close to birth, but thankfully the baby was fine both times. If someone had helped me through transition, and coached me through the contractions when they were really intense, I could have done it without the pain relief, I think. My DH was great, but he was in over his head, really.

    When I was at home, I birthed completely without drugs. They weren't there. I hurt, and I made it without them. It was better for me, and better for my baby, and I am proud of making it.

    Sure you can do it, if you want to. Get support and imform yourself. And as far as being a wuss about pain - don't stress. Who likes pain?

    Oh, and try water for pain relief - it's great!

  16. #34
    frankie Guest

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    jeez guys,

    Its not that im against drugs and pain relief i just dont know how some women do it without, i feel like ill take everything they offer, I AM hesitant with an epidural because some say it sometimes makes it harder to push but that could be just different people.

    I really appreciate all the advice ive started doing some reading to educate myself,and if ive learnt anything from pregnancy and birthing its be well educated before you go into labour, so you know what to expect.I heard that
    having a bath during labour or early contractions will soften my muscles and prevent tearing, Im almost certain i will tear as my mum and her mum did. I start my birthing classes on 01/03/08 with my dp, i heard they are very helpful.

    This is probably just my hormones playing on me but i just want to say that i really appreciate everyones responses, they were all very helpful and very personal and many people dont like to tell personal things to people they dont know.

    Once again thanks heaps

    P.S. if i remember after i give birth ill post my experience and tell you all whether i stood strong or wussed out like i thought i would.

  17. #35

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    hugs to you frankie

    it was a great question that stimulated some great discussion

    x

  18. #36

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    I really do believe that it depends on how you see the pain as to how you can deal with it. I was ecstatic to have contractions and feel every single one because to me it was my body's way of telling me it was doing what it was supposed to. I had a stop start labour with my first and I hardly felt a thing. I think visualisation helps you to go with the pain. Knowing that with each wave the start, the peak and the slow calm afterwards, that I am one step closer to seeing my baby. Fear makes it hurt worse and I know this because towards the end of my birth with Seth I started to get very scared, scared of my scar and how it would take it and with every contraction it hurt more because that fear was present. When I relaxed again it hurt less and I was more able to deal with the pain and focus on my job, which was to birth my baby. Yes active labour helps, as does certain positions, techniques and support. I know it sounds corny but if you can focus properly you do become "one with the pain". Most importantly its about the mindset, its about feeling supported, empowered and in control. All these things are possible. Educate yourself and surround yourself with like minded people, negativity breads doubt and doubt causes fear, and fear causes pain.

    Goodluck

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