Post # 1
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
So we’re still a few months away from writing a birth plan, but I started to research epidurals today and I’m totally freaked out by the idea of having a needle stuck into my spine and then a tube hanging out of my back all labor long to administer the doses.
I am a fan of natural stuff, but I’m certainly not convinced that I must have a natural childbirth. I’m skeptical about the shady research related to the risks of epidurals, most of which is based on the epidurals used decades ago and not today, so really my concern is having a freaking tube in my back.
Just thinking about it makes me squirm and I’m literally shaking just typing this because I have to think about it to write it out.
So has anyone maybe done it both ways and can speak to the relative amount of pain? Is it really that bad that you would really want that pain reliever? Anything else anyone wants to add.
Post # 3
My mom got an IV drip with a painkiller. She said it took the edge off and it was less risky and scary than an epidural. You could always look into an option like that, as a “best of both worlds” thing.
Post # 4
Overall I personally much preferred my experience with a functioning epidural than I did without. But that could have been because I had to push through Pitocin without pain relief.
When it comes right down to it you know if you need it or not, and if you genuinely need it you don’t care much at that point how they get the relief to you.
Post # 5
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
@mepayne: Ugh, IVs freak me out too (though not as much), but I know I’ll probably be hooked up to an IV no matter what anyway.
I’ll look into it. Thanks!
Post # 6
I have done both and I really didn’t prefer one over the other, but my natural birth was so fast that I just didn’t have time to worry about any pain. I will tell you that I would have passed out from pain from the first one had I not had the epideral. I was all back labor and that was like someone was taking a sledge hammer to my tail bone, but I had very narrow hips.
If it were me, I would tell them you want it, then if you don’t think that you need it then you can tell them not to do it.
It really wasn’t that big of a deal for them to put it in or for me to lay there with it in, really I think that I slept the whole time.
Post # 7
Here is my story. I went in dead set against an epidural. At about 5cm I caved and went for the IV drip meds. The nurses told me it would make my son groggy. He slept all day and did not eat for the whole first day of life. I did not like the effect it had on him. After that med faded and the risks of using it again (it can’t be used if the hearbeat is not regular and my son’s beat became irregular at one point) I got the epidural but only after I could not handle the pain. YES, it helps. It was finally some rest from the pain and made me feel like I could do it for as long as I had to.
Post # 8
II had had an epidural with my first baby and swore I would never do it again. I had 3 more babies with no pain meds. 1 of them in my van.
The epidural made it difficult for me to push which meant that I had an episiotomy and forceps. Then I had to get a catheter after the birth (you gt one during the birth too) because the epidural froze my bladder for the next day. The catheter gave me an infection. Yay.
Post # 9
i have done both. there are pros and cons for doing it either way but to address your concern about a “tube” sticking in your back, it’s not really noticeable as you are pretty numb there and obviously focused on other things! it’s a super, super thin needle taped to your back after it’s inserted and it’s attached to an iv. not a big deal.
Post # 10
I didn’t want the epidural I initially either.. However, I felt I really needed it about 14 hours in. The crappy thing is that the tube kept falling out of place so I didn’t really get my dosages and it wasn’t really very effective after the first couple hours. It was basically useless right before pushing and throughout.
Post # 11
Post # 12
I went to labour expecting to have all kinds of pain killers! First they gave me laughing gas or whatever it is, it didn’t help. I was so much in pain that they decided to give me Epidurals. I felt a lot better after that. However, when a nurse came to check on me, she said I got it too much so she weaned it off. After a while, I started to be in so much pain againbut then she said she couldn’t give it to me anymore because I was too close to giving birth! She said if I got Epidurals now, I wouldn’t feel anything and I wouldn’t be able to push! So I pushed for 3 hours without any pain medications and trust me it’s not like in a movie (that they seemed to push for couple minutes and then baby came out and then mom was instantly okay after that). In summary 21 hours of labour + 3 hours of pushing, will never forget this experience :-).
However, for some of my friends, they did get Epidurals during their labour/pushing and they said they didnt feel any pain at all.
Post # 14
I didn’t use any pain medication with my three pregnancies. I’m not one to take asprin or anything like that either. (I did however, take Ibuprofen to help with cramps after 3rd baby).
I had it in my mind that I would go “natural” (as natural as it can be in a hospital) throughout my pregnancy, and yah it hurt but I’m glad I was able to do it.
IVs, needles, stuff like that kinda makes me uneasy too.
You will know what to do when the time comes. Good luck and I hope its easy for you 🙂
Post # 15
I had my heart set on a natural waterbirth when Dirty Delete was born. But a) they didn’t have time to run the bath. Dirty Delete was in a hurry. b) My amniotic fluid had turned green so I couldn’t go in the bath. So I used nitrous oxide that worked very well for me. It dulled the sharpest pains, but didn’t take anything away. But beforehand I had decided not to decide very much. I’ve heard of women getting so dissapointed when the birth doesn’t go the way they planned it, ie. had to get an epidural/emergency c-section when they wanted a natural birth that I kept my mind as open to all possibilities as possible.
I highly recommend Ina May Gaskin’s Guide to childbirth. It’s an amazing read and really calmed me down before the birth.
Post # 16
I’m following this too! The birthing centre that I hope to give birth at has no epidural option (just the gas and a birthing pool which is what I think I’d prefer at the moment) so I am trying to decide between that and the hospital. Am less keen on the hospital atmosphere etc but they do have the epidural option and it is safer in case of complications etc.