After those nine months of pregnancy finally come to an end, it’s time for expectant mothers to face the next phase: Labor. While a decent number of patients report feeling worrisome or fearful toward this significant event, we are more than happy to discuss the types of labor pain management practices that are available to you at Women First Health Center – whether you’d like to manage this pain in a holistic way, or go with a more medicinal route. The most popular approaches are listed below.
Medical Methods for Labor Pain
- Epidural: A type of regional anesthetic, an epidural is placed into your spinal column. This is safer for the baby, as it does not enter your bloodstream. Patients experience a decrease in blood pressure and numbness in the lower half of the body.
- Spinal block: Acting quicker than most other techniques, this regional block provides the same sensation as an epidural – and is typically used in cesarean deliveries.
- General anesthesia: In the event a woman needs an emergency cesarean, general anesthesia may be necessary to expedite delivery. Once awakened from the medications, patients can see their newborns in the recovery room.
- Pain-relief drugs: The most common of these are Morphine and Stadol. These medications are given intravenously and therefore, pass onto the body through the placenta. They may be used in the very early stages of labor, well before delivery.
Natural Techniques to Help with Labor Pain
- Breathing practices: Rather than hyperventilating, the simple act of focusing on your breath during this critical time causes women to feel more relaxed and stabilized – and results in more pain control during contractions.
- Meditation: The more stressed you are, the tenser you get – a cause-and-effect that ends in increased pain. Meditation practices, such as visualization and patterned breathing, can reduce your stress levels.
- Being active: Even if you’re in a hospital and attached to IVs or monitors, walking around every so often, squatting or sitting can ease the pain – and increase labor.
- Massage: Receiving this form of counter pressure can act against the pain-filled area, and also provide a bit of relaxation, too.
- Distraction: Distracting oneself from the present pain can be possible through watching a television show, listening to music or chatting with your partner about something unrelated. It allows you to be physically present but mentally unaware.
No matter which method an expectant mother chooses, our expertly trained team of obstetricians is dedicated to helping you manage your labor pain – as many satisfied patients can attest. To schedule an appointment – and receive the best care during this significant time in your life – contact our office at 1-973-669-5711.