Looking for the best way to relax in birthing

Phelicia - posted on 01/22/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )

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I had my first baby naturally, and my second was an emergency c-section (not pleasant). I want to VBAC this time (as I am expecting again) but have realized that both times I recieved an epideral, my labor stopped completely. I want to go drug free (but I am a chicken) and I was hoping someone could tell me what kind of birthing class would be best for me.

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Tiffany - posted on 01/23/2010

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well I took a birthing class with a doula - here is what I leaned and applied (and I had a successful natural birth)
1. when you feel the pain dont be afraid of it. Use a visual tool. Make your mind see the baby slipping down... visualise the baby moving down... and relax every muscle between your boobs and your knees. Tighten your hands or arms, grab a pillow or partner';s hand, but allow your bottom to stay nice and loose. Speeds it up AND feels better than tighening from fear. 1st hand experience there. lol\
water. i jumped in a hot shower and sat on a stool at 8cm dialated, and it was euphoric. i went rom 8-10cm in 30 mins. If you have a tub its even better.
sitting feels better than laying down.
standing mioght be hard past 4cm LOL!
but ask to be able to sit or move around, laying will not help.

hope i helped. these really worked for me!

Emma - posted on 01/23/2010

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i used gas in mine and i was so relaxed at times i didnt even know i was having a contraction but i liked it and it worked for me

Michelle - posted on 01/23/2010

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I agree totoally with Belinda. I had a totally 'intervention' free labor and birth with my daughter.

How I did it... well like Belinda said, you have to imagine how you want your birth to go and do this throughout your pregnancy. I think I started doing this when I felt Brianna kick for first time at around 16 weeks. I knew that this was my baby and no one was gonna pump drugs into my body..I am all for natural births when there seems no medical reason to have intervention.

I would lie in the bath and think about how my birth would be. I wanted a home birth, at 33 weeks got the go -ahead and I also wanted to use water as a pain relief.
Well Brianna was born at 35+6 weeks and so was not born at home, nor in water :( BUT she was born completely pain relief and intervention free :)

The best pain relief I had was my partner. I love him sooooooo much that just his touch could take pain away (he can even take away my period pain!)
I knowledges mymself fully on the pro's & con's of intervention free birth, and the pros definately out weighed the cons.

I am scared of needles and therefore any pain relief was out of the question..I dont class gas and air as pain relief (though I never needed to use this either) but I mean epidurals etc...

my one main thought through my pregnancy and labor was that my little girl was going to be born the way I wanted. Yes I didnt get the home birth, but that ok. my midwife read my notes and new this, so she dimmed the lighting, and didnt let anyone else but herself and the head midwife in the room.

While your in labor the best thing to do is visualise your baby in your belly and moving down the birth canal then coming out without it hurting. I did this all the time. Labor didnt hurt me one bit, and I was literally lying flat on my back with the heart monitor on for 6 hours straight, even when transferring hospitals in the ambulance.
(very much a complicated story and hospital mess up)



you can do it Phelicia, you just have to believe you can. and believing started by eliminateing those fears as to why you feel labor hurts. its all to do with your brain and the way you let it process pain signals.
If your all scared and tense your muscles contract stopping labor from working properly. You then experience more pain and you think you cant go on, when really you can, you just have to relax.

now you'd think having a prem baby and being rushed to another hospital with a neonatal unit would be scary for me...well at no point was I ever scared of anything apart from the nasty huge needle they stuck in my leg without my consent to speed up lung development.

I knew I wanted an all natural birth and I got one. So can you.

[deleted account]

Congratulations on making a great choice to birth naturally. I did not undertake any classes. but wanted to add my thoughts on how I successfully birthed naturally. My two births were 100% intervention free. Both were incredible experiences and I would choose no other way to bring my children into the world.



It's all about mental preparation. Visualise exactly how you want yourself to behave during labor and the birth. Run that vision over and over and over and over in your mind before you start anything. This was my first action. I started visualising both my births months before hand, and fair enough things happened that I didn’t plan on happening (waters not breaking in first labor and waters breaking 36 hours before my second labor started) but I really knew what I wanted and put 'it' out there in order to achieve.



During labor keep upright and keep moving. Gentle rocking worked amazingly for me. Use your voice. Heavy breaths through contractions, moaning and verbalising your strength flowing down and open really helps too. Showers and sitting in a bath can also help. I kept my eyes closed throughout all contractions and then towards the end they were closed most of the time, internalising my energy, conserving my energy. The actual delivery was also upright. I was on my knees leaning over the head of the bed. Just follow however your feeling at the time and do whatever you feel like doing at the time.



Have a support person (or two), that truly understand what you would like to achieve. I had my husband and my sister. They were amazing. They knew exactly how I wanted to birth although their main goal apart from looking after me, was to make sure we made the best decision at all times throughout the labor and birth and to keep me and our baby safe. They got anything I asked for (drinks, towels, back rubs etc) and just provided a calm and ‘in control’ atmosphere.



Good luck. :)

Quinn - posted on 01/23/2010

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Take a Bradley class. They are expensive (ours was about $300), but it was the single best decision we made during my pregnancy. Bradley classes will teach you a bunch of different ways to relax and get through the pain without medication, including meditations, breathing techniques, massage, positioning, things your partner can do to help, etc. the techniques that help vary from woman to woman and birth to birth, so bradley covers as many as possible so that at least a couple will be useful. I had a natural, no-med, water birth (in a hospital) and our Bradley class was integral to allowing that to happen. I'm convinced that without it I would have ended up flat on my back, screaming, and miserable. (Seriously--people say I'm brave, but I cannot imagine how people give birth on their backs. Moving around was the thing that helped me deal with the pain the most!) Instead it was an incredible experience. I cannot imagine ever giving birth another way.



For what it's worth, the epidural frequently slows or halts labor. That's why they call it the roller coaster--you get the epidural for the pain, but labor slows or stops so you get the pitocin, then the unnaturally strong contractions put the baby into distress so you head to a section. (Sometimes there's an extra round of epidural and pit in there as well.) What you describe is very common.

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