my husband and i are planning on having another baby. should i have an epidural or no epidural??

Rayana - posted on 11/11/2011 ( 95 moms have responded )

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my husband and i are wanting to have another baby.. i have had 2 babies with an epidural.. and everytyme i go into labor the main thng that scares me is the epidural.. is it as bad as it sounds witout the epidural?? i had it on my mind about not having one this tyme, but im not sure.. what do u thnk??

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Rebekah - posted on 11/11/2011

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How long were your previous labors? Mine progressively got shorter, so my 3rd labor was easiest without an epidural (all three of mine were born without an epidural).

Have you seen the movie "The Business of Being Born"? I'd recommend reading some books or educating yourself on natural births so you can be prepared to go without an epidural b/c your labor might just be too quick to get one.

Eschelle - posted on 11/11/2011

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I am a big fan of the epidural, especially after i felt how it feels without one cause my stupid mid wives let it wear off right before I had to actually give birth. I was freaking livid and I wouldn't wish that on anyone.

[deleted account]

Ina May's Guide to Childbirth has a lot of techniques and advice for handling labor. I hate needles and never wanted an epidural. I know it sounds crazy, but stay positive. Don't worry about the next contraction, focus on the one you're having. Keep your body and especially your jaw relaxed. Do research on positions that can help and find out things that your partner/support person can do to help you (like counter pressure). I've never had an epidural so I can't compare, but I've had two babies naturally and each experience was amazing.

Rebekah - posted on 11/11/2011

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7lbs 7oz, 8lbs 11oz, and 9lbs 1oz.

After doing my own research, I decided that allowing my body to do what it was intended would be best /safest for me and my baby. I've also always been a little afraid of the whole stick a needle in your spine concept. For me, I get into a grove, breathing away every contraction, and it's just easier to continue than to have to stop and get an epidural.

[deleted account]

Try it without, you can always change your mind mid labor. Just ask the nurses to tell you when you've reached the point of no return (that point is different depending on the hospital).

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♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/31/2011

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Again not everyone can do a water birth or other methods where you can get out of bed because every pregnancy is different. Miranda I'm sorry for your family's loss but everyone is different.

Not everyone is lucky enough to have a nice easy natural labour either. The labour and delivery I had with my 2nd girl back in March scared me so much I don't know if I really want another baby period.

Miranda - posted on 12/31/2011

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I have 2 little girls both born with no epidural. Honestly I thought the contraction hurt more then the delivery. But the epidural scares me in a lot of ways and my sister was talked into having an epidural and she lost her baby at full term. Was it the epidural? We don't know but if this medicine in the epidural is putting to sleep are lower half so we can't feel anything what is it doing to the baby? That is what scares me. Maybe I just don't really know a lot of information on it because I never planned on getting one but what i look at is what goes in me goes in the baby. And after what happened to my sister I wouldn't wish that upon anyone:( Good Luck and with what every you do you will do great...I hope that I didn't scare you and just remember that you have 2 little ones already and everything went well so more than likely if you do it the same was as the others with the epidural everything will be fine!!! And you can look into other methods, Waterbirth!!!

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/30/2011

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Agreed Amanda. I had an epidural for my first born with no issues. I had a very hectic induced labour for my 2nd and it was scary. Of course any time you have labour and delivery nurses rushing in and out of a room talking about BP is scary. My diastolic reached 210 and everyone wanted to know if that was real.

I say have a few options open.

Amanda - posted on 12/30/2011

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depends on how bad the pain will be for the pregnancy they say all pregnancy are different

Kathleen - posted on 12/30/2011

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well baby #2 is here we had patient induced epidural which worked well for me. not too much, i could still feel everything. made it easier to actually push when it came time. I was induced yet again, but the pain was much more maneagble then it was with the first child :D so it just depends on you and your body's pain tolerance. most of my labor i had very little pain meds, i had stadol a few times during the night, then the epi was given in the morning and just a few hours later and i hadn't felt a whole lot a pain just tightness he was out :D

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/30/2011

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Jessica did I say I knew everything? No I didn't. But it's more of a news worthy event when it DOES happen. So get off your high horse.

Jessica - posted on 12/30/2011

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It's actually not just me alot of my friend's also had an epidural that also ended up with really bad back pain's after, also can leave you paralyzed,

http://pregnancy.about.com/od/epidurals/...
(copy and paste link)

What happens after I give birth?:
After you have given birth, the epidural catheter is removed by removing the tape around it and pulling the catheter out. You may still experience numbness in your legs for several hours. Occasionally mothers will feel weak in the legs or even numb for longer periods of time. Back pain may also occur at the site of the epidural.
So do your research Megan!!! You dont know everythink.

Rayana Weissend- Im not trying to worry you love it's your decision, Go with what your body is telling you when it come's to the time. It's different for all i do agree but not everyone come's out of it fine. good luck with what ever decision you make. x



•After an Epidural
What are the risks of an epidural?:
The risks of an epidural are numerous. The complications that are most common are things like a drop in mom's blood pressure, which can usually be quickly treated by medications and position changes. Others like fetal distress, fetal malpositioning, increase in the cesarean rate are also common with epidurals, but corrections require various procedures. Paralysis, numbness, nerve injury and infection for mom are really rare but do occur.


•Spinal Headache
•Epidural Facts
Can everyone have an epidural?:
Not everyone can have an epidural. There may be reasons that are physical to you or staff related as to why an epidural may not be for you.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/30/2011

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Jessica that was just you. It's not like that happens to everyone. I had an epidural with my first daughter no issues what so ever. I wanted one with my 2nd daughter and I couldn't get one because of edema (excessive water retension) and they couldn't place it.

As for everyone suggesting a lot of alternative methods, not every pregnancy will go as planned and you may not be able to get up, walk around and get into the whirlpool tub. I was on a heart monitor during my labour because I had extremely high BP. I couldn't even walk around the 2nd day because I was on an IV drip of Magnesium to reduce my BP.

Joy - posted on 12/30/2011

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With my first son, which was 6 years ago, I knew that I couldn't handle the pain. My threshold for pain was way too low. I felt like a wuss but I got it anyway. It worked that time. This time, a couple of months ago, with my second son, I got it but after a couple of hours, it stopped working properly. So I toughed it out. I cried and dealt with it. It is entirely up to you what you want to do. Do your research and do what you think you want to do. I went through most of my second labor without the epidural and I have to say that it is painful but it is not the end of the world. It is survivable and you will forget it all when you see your baby's face.

Melmarie17 - posted on 12/29/2011

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I had an emergency c-section. I had to get an epidural however the pain is tolerable. I think you can do it naturally without it. Good luck.

Jessica - posted on 12/29/2011

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Hi, wouldnt bother with another one, or to any ladie's that havent had one dont. WHY, is because when I had a epidural gave me really bad back witch I still suffer with and my daughter is now 2 year's old. My sister had an epidural with her first, but said after having one baby it's not as bad as you think because you know what your in for and doing. It's your desition but think about it and good luck x

Jessica - posted on 12/29/2011

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Hi, wouldnt bother with another one, or to any ladie's that havent had one dont. WHY, is because when I had a epidural gave me really bad back witch I still suffer with and my daughter is now 2 year's old. My sister had an epidural with her first, but said after having one baby it's not as bad as you think because you know what your in for and doing. It's your desition but think about it and good luck x

Brenna - posted on 12/28/2011

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I have had 3 babies natural with no epidural. It wasn't fun but I survived. I didn't want one because I had heard horror stories(as you do with everything I guess). I never had one so obviously I don't know what it's like with one but I was just fine without it. :)

Jessica - posted on 12/28/2011

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I just had my second baby and I had it planned that I would have morphine and laughing gas. Well I got my morphine but my son came too early for the laughing gas to be used. Heck the morphine didn't even have time to kick in before I had my son. From this experience it depends on your threshold of pain. Since I basically went through child birth naturally I have found that since I had my son 10 days ago I already have my energy up and I am healing much faster then the doctor's say I would have with taking more pain killers during labor.

Since your more afraid of the epidural I would suggest looking at other options for pain relief.

Caroline - posted on 12/27/2011

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I used Bradley method with my second (epidural didn't appeal to me after the first-couldn't move anything waist down, but felt contractions-ugh!). I loved the relaxation exercises, gave birth to my 11 pound bouncing boy minutes after arriving at the hospital- it was intense, but didn't hurt as bad as the pain I felt with my first before getting the epidural. I wouldn't trade the feeling of actually experiencing childbirth for an epidural. But do what suits you, I didn't have wicked back labor or anything complicated like that. Just saying that the pain is manageable, and not even necessarily painful if you approach it in certain ways. Some women even claim to have an orgasm while birthing :-o

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/27/2011

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You also have to consider if you are able to do any of those so called pain relievers.

Lacey - posted on 12/27/2011

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Really and truly it's your decision in the end. I personally did not have any meds with my first and will not with the second but this was a long, researched and personal decision. There are tons of natural pain reliefs ie hot showers, massages, water birth, different positions, etc etc etc. If you want to try without meds go ahead and if you change your mind half way through that's okay too. The end of the day all that really matters is your health and the baby's health! :)

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/27/2011

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LOL Krista! My now 9 month old was 5lbs 10oz at birth and I had her without an epidural (not completely by choice) and had to push before I was fully dialated for the safety of my baby. I've also never had a naturally brought on labour because of health problems.



April, the risk is quite minor. I suggest researching pain killers before hand.

April - posted on 12/27/2011

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i have had 3 kids all with first one i had a spinal (almost an emergency c section) 2nd one the dosage wasn't high enough i guess because i felt everything (its painful but not to bad) third one they got more of the epidural on one side of my body then the other i had no use of my right leg for almost a day (we weren't sure if the feeling would ever come back) that all being said with my next i'm not having an epidural. everything that could possible go wrong and just the fact of what happened last time and the possibility of not being able to run and play with my kids isn't worth me be comfortable. now not everyone has bad experiences you could be perfectly fine but me personally im not risking it anymore.

Rachel - posted on 12/27/2011

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I feel like the epiduarl is a blessing! My aunt told me that I wasn't trying to be a hero for anyone and that I should enjoy my delivery process and for the most part looking back I could because I wasn't in so much pain.

Chrystal - posted on 12/27/2011

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Jessi while I get the intent, I know that many that give birth naturally hold strong views on it you should try to be more understanding of other womens feelings on the matter. It's true a big reason is fear because they are unsure of being able to make it through that pain and that's normal some can work through the fear some can't. But it's not the only reason to choose an epidural I made my choice with my first for my sons benefit I had been in active labor for more than a day, was so tired and in so much pain from his positioning i was starting to go into shock and it was starting to effect him I had the choice of getting an epidural to get a break from the pain and giving one last try or giving up and having a c-section so I choose an epidural and it let me have an assisted vaginal birth. Yes trillions have done natural before but just as many have died in childbirth before it's not an easy thing it may be natural but it's not simple and there is a place for an epidural in giving birth. Each birth is different one may be easy with little pain the next may be more pain than you can imagine and what ever the women chooses is ok. It's not always fear that drives the choice somethings it's whats best for both mom and baby.

Krista - posted on 12/26/2011

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GET THE EPIDURAL!!!!! i had my first with one and my second without, only because he came 6weeks early and they were trying to stop my labor the whole damn time! he was only 4lbs 9oz and it was the WORST imaginable pain you could ever fathom. i couldnt imagine someone having a normal size baby to have one naturally. that would be a million times worse. i screamed soo loud, my husband felt he was in a horror movie. i swear the whole hospital heard me.. i HIGHLY suggest you continue getting epidurals.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/26/2011

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Jessi, that's pretty harsh. Some women don't tolerate pain very well- myself included. If a woman wants an epidural why shouldn't she be allowed to have one? I had a natural birth and I hated it! It wasn't fear Jessi, it was pain. Try to be a little more understanding.

Jessi - posted on 12/26/2011

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Trillions of women have come before you and birthed WITHOUT an epidural... Why can't you? FEAR is the only reason women have one.

Marie - posted on 12/25/2011

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With my first pregnancy I went 2 hrs without an epidural and it was so painful for me I ended up getting one. I am 20 wks prego with my second child and I will be getting an epidural with this one as soon as I can, lol. But I have major respect for the women that give birth without epidurals, they are some strong women.

Chrystal - posted on 12/25/2011

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With my first I had an epidural toward the end of labor because as it turned out he was in the wrong position and it caused a lot of pain. The epidural didn't save me from that much pain but it gave me a brief time to rest before having him delivered with forceps and deep tearing that resulted. With my second I did it without epidural and I would say it was a rather pleasant birth it did hurt at the end just before the pushing started but other than that it was more uncomfortable than anything else. It's not as bad as you think it will be your meant to be able to handle that type of pain. If you don't want an epidural you'll need to plan ways to cope with the birth process so don't wait to late to decide and keep in mind that even if you choose no epidural you can change your mind during delivery if the birth is more complicated than expected like my first was.

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/22/2011

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Michelle that was the worst labour! The worst was probably my diastolic with the labour and delivery nurses on the floor coming in to check my diastolic at over 200 and asking if that was real. At least that's what my mom said happened.

If I am able I will at least learn the bradley method and fly in my mom to be my birth coach because she was there with my girls.

Rachael - posted on 12/21/2011

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it all depends on your preference... i had a epidural with both my kids and wouldn't change a thing ( i am a big sissy and hate pain ). I'm sure whatever you chose to do will be the right choice for you.

Michelle - posted on 12/21/2011

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Oh Megan, you poor thing! I was lucky that I wasn't induced (or at least I think I wasn't ... I might have been for my first because my contractions slowed down). Apparently if you get induced it REALLY hurts - I always said that if I had to be induced I'd want an epi. That crowning moment is THE WORST! That was the only time I screamed in my first labour (I didn't scream at all in my second - just a whole lot of "ow ow ow"s when she was).

Rayana - get one if you're in doubt about if you can handle the pain, but going natural really isn't that bad (unless you have a bad exp like poor Megan).

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/21/2011

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Michelle, I had an epi the first time and couldn't get one the second. It is definitely not always easier the 2nd time. My 2nd labour was probably the worst ever. I was given an emergancy induction because my diastolic was over 100. At one point during labour it was over 200. I had to push while I wasn't even fully dialated.



I've never had the chance to experiance going into natural labour because both times I was induced because of pre eclampsia. Well that isn't completely true because I was in the beginning stages of labour with my older daughter and having contractions.



I think my 2nd experiance was bad though because of so much happening though. I got to scream and curse at my mom though right before my daughter's head crowned (I was induced 2 weeks early and my husband was still in BC where we live now and I was in NY where I'm from) Thank God she was only 5lbs 10 oz. She was so tiny I felt like I was playing with one of my older daughter's dolls. In fact when I did get home I laid her next to one of the dolls and they were the same length

Lexi - posted on 12/20/2011

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I think it's different for every person. I was in "early stages" of labor for 4 days with my first son. I was having real painful contractions but I was not dilating. They got gradually worse every day until the last two days I was crying every time. By the 3 1/2 day point I was so exhausted I got the epidural. My husband convinced me to get it and I'm so glad I did. It was the only thing that allowed my body to finally relax and dilate. My son was born 8 hours later. I went from being dilated 2cm to being 9cm in just the first 3 hours after the epidural. With my second son my water broke without even going into labor. I decided I wanted to see how everything felt before getting the epidural. I too find them to be a very scary thing. I wanted to see if I could do it without and I wanted to see if it would feel any different this time. They gave me the medicine to induce me at 12 and contractions started up pretty fast. I decided to get the epidural at about 5 and my son was born at 9. It was more of a front labor this time and felt really different than the back labor I had with my first son. Still just as painful but because of the Pitocin they gave me to induce labor, the contractions were only 30 seconds apart and really strong. I think could have done it without the epidural but I decided there was just no reason for me to be in that much pain. I felt like I couldn't take it anymore and didn't want to if i didn't have to. I still had a much lighter epidural than with my first. I didn't sit there constantly pushing the little button they give you that releases more medicine. lol The first time I was just so terrified of that pain returning. Every time I felt the littlest twinge I pushed the button. It took almost five hours to be able to feel and move my legs again after the took the epidural out. This time I could feel a decent amount of pain but it was much more bearable and I could even still move my legs myself, with just a bit of help from my husband or the nurse. I've heard people say epidurals slow labor, but for me I feel like things sped up after getting it both times. i suddenly dilated the rest of the way and things moved on fast. My body is too tense from the pain. Once the pain is gone, my body lets the baby out. I personally am all for the "see how it goes" approach though. Try it without meds and then if you want to get the epidural part way through you can. I think no matter how you do it, epidural, or not, you are a rock star. Do whatever feels right for you.

Sapna - posted on 12/20/2011

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I didnt had epidural for my first baby and planning not to have on this one as well...I dont say epidural is bad but it depends on ur body and a bit of breathing exercises practise...I did alot of deep breaths with my braxton hicks and practised for labor,,,I had 20 hrs of labor and at any stage I never thought I would have epidural, I was asked if i wanted laughing gas? I said yes but it was not worth..its better to do without anything but ur own will power and respecting ur body...labor is not bad, its good if u take it positively...good luck

Michelle - posted on 12/18/2011

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Hi Rayana. I've had two bubs and both without an epi. For my first, it was 13 1/2 hours of ESTABLISHED labour (u have to be at least 4cm to be in established labour so that's when the timer starts) and I hated it - the pain, the pushing, the tearing - hated it!! It was funny - I went into hospital with my second and told the midwife - I want an epidural, I've been through the natural labour, I'm already superwoman I don't need to be superwoman again. She laughed and said, let's try the gas first. At the time I was a bit peeved, but in then I didn't need the epi and the labour was so much easier than the first. Now I know you have had 2 already so am not going to preach that "it is easier the 2nd time you don't need anything" (even though I think it is), but keep in mind that if you have an epi - it slows the labour down by about 2.5 hours - midwife told me that - it makes sense, but I'm not sure whether she told me that to talk me out of the intervention. Also, because you can't feel much ... it is MUCH HARDER to push. In the end - it hurts - oh my GOD it hurts ... but when it's all over, you can have full movement, you don't need a catheter to pee, you can walk with your baby if you want, you can be out in 4hours - all done. When I have a 3rd ... it will still go through my mind on whether I will want an epi (even though I have given all my reasons not to above) - there is an appeal for a pain free labour. Haha - I probably haven't helped much!

♥♪Megan♫♥ - posted on 12/18/2011

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I have to admit that the size of the needle scares me too! Yikes! I had one for my older daughter and it was great. I couldn't get one for my now 9 month old because I had edema and they couldn't place it. I never want to have another natural birth.

However if you are afraid of the epidural needle (the one with the novacain isn't much better) then maybe you should look into the Bradley birthing method. I hadn't heard of it until I was 6 months pregnant and my friend brought it up, but it's worth a shot. They also suggest you go through a birth plan with a midwife and get your husband involved in this plan.

Kristall - posted on 12/18/2011

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with my 1st child i got an epidural, and i thought it was heaven on earth. but i just recently have a baby, i was in pain the whole day and bout time i got to the hospital i couldnt even get an IV.. it was time to push, and i thought it would be no way i could do it without an epidural. but i think it was alot easier without it.

Emily - posted on 12/17/2011

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i really wanted to go without and honestly when i got to 7cm i was in so much pain that the hospital talked me into getting one and my inhabitions were down and my boyfriend kept telling me dont do it they will give you a c-section and sure enough the second my epidural kicked in the doctor said i wasnt going to progress enough and that i had to get a c-section. lets just say I wont be seeing him for my next pregnancy. he was great up until i was having my baby. I would say try try try not to get the epidural I wish I never did

Brittany - posted on 12/16/2011

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I was in labor for 20 hours and was doing fine without anything but my sons heart rate droped so they had to give me meds to speed up the labor so I went ahead and got the epi because I was scared of the pushing. But I will never have another epi. They had to stick me 3 times and still ended up hitting a nerve in my back which was so painful and when they finally got it in only half my body was numb. come to find out I have a narrow space so it makes it really hard to get the epi in. I still have problems with my back today. I know alot of people do fine with them so i guess it depends on the person.

Michelle - posted on 12/16/2011

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i was 9 cm dilated and right away got the epidural! It was amazing i didnt feel a thing! i pushed for 20 minutes and actually enjoyed it! I am all for epidural!

Janelson106 - posted on 12/15/2011

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I really think that it deoends on the person and their tolerance to pain. I had no problems not using the epidurel. It wasnt that bad at all. Of course I had a very fast delivery. Now people that go like 10 or more hours of labor....that might be a different story. But even with that, some people can handle it no problem and others need something.If you have a high tolerance to pain then you shouldnt have any problems.

Janelson106 - posted on 12/15/2011

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I really think that it deoends on the person and their tolerance to pain. I had no problems not using the epidurel. It wasnt that bad at all. Of course I had a very fast delivery. Now people that go like 10 or more hours of labor....that might be a different story. But even with that, some people can handle it no problem and others need something.If you have a high tolerance to pain then you shouldnt have any problems.

Nicole - posted on 12/15/2011

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i was dead set on having no pain relief but i had a long labor and welcomed an epidural with open arms half way through!! i was worried about the needle and having a catheter but i diddnt feel any of it and could have kissed the anesethist.. i was pain free in the end and was really able to enjoy the experience of delivering my son, i watched the whole thing in a mirror and touched his head as it crowned it was a beautiful experience. Play it by ear. i told the midwifes that my plan was to have no intervention but i wanted them to tell me when i had a chance to have and epidural if i wanted and that worked well for me i dont think i could have gone that much longer in pain

Amanda - posted on 12/14/2011

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I had nothing with my first child and I would go that way again in a heart beat. With my secont child I had a spinal tap but it was for a c-section but the spinal tap is the most horrible thing every!!!! I was told they're the same as an epidural but the spinal is only done once, with the epidural they leave something in so they can keep giving medicine. So they're pretty much the same. So I would NEVER have an epidural by choice. I didn't think it was that bad all with nothing!!! And without the epidural you can get up right after having the baby and watch their first bath and all that fun stuff! :) I didn't get to see my second child's first bath cause I was stuck in bed and couldn't move. I was up moving probably 30 minutes or less with my first one. And I've hear epidurals can slow down labor but I've also heard in some it can speed it up.

Talitha - posted on 12/08/2011

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I didn't have an epidural. Honestly I don't think it was that bad. I mean, don't get me wrong, it hurt. alot. But I survived. I have heard that an epidural can actually prolong your labour. If we decide to have a second, my plan will be no epidural.

Emma - posted on 12/08/2011

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its totally up to you! i had a induced birth with my 4 year old and a c section with my twins and with the induced birth i had an epi! before i went into labour with her i swore i didnt want an epidural but it got to a point i could not cope with the contractions there was just no break in between them! if you get to a stage where you feel you cant cope and you need one just go for it!

Stifler's - posted on 12/07/2011

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labour isn't that bad without an epidural. it's over in matter of hours and you have your baby.

Debbie - posted on 12/07/2011

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My first two pregnancies I had epidurals. The last was all natural. I was in good shape during pregnancy I got lots of exercise and was very healthy. My first labour was 72 hours the second was 30 hours the last one was 4 hours and was not as bad as I thought it was going to be.

Kenneka - posted on 12/06/2011

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I LOVE EPIS....AND I WOULDN'T HAVE A BABY WITHOUT ONE LOL....I HAD ONE WITH MY FIRST AND ONLY CHILD AND I WAS SO CALM. EVERYTHING WAS EASY AS PIE AND I WAS FEELING JUST FINE! GO FOR IT.

Amilyn - posted on 12/06/2011

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I have 1 baby. I had am epidural that Did work for a little bit but then stopped. I was in labor for 30 hours. It was the hardest thing I will ever do but If I have another baby I won't have one.

Tresia - posted on 11/30/2011

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with my 1st child i barely got the epidural and didnt get to enjoy it.. with my 2nd i got it and was able to enjoy the experience of becoming a mother again, and to be honest my "pushing time" (lol) was a lot quicker than the first! my contractions were off the chart and i was relaxed! enjoy the epidural so when your bundle of joy comes into the world you're relaxed and can enjoy it more! best of luck and congrats!

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