what does a epidural feel like?

Brittany - posted on 01/11/2010 ( 191 moms have responded )

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i am having my first baby and i wanna know what a epidural feels like. i hear it hurts like crazy then i hear its nothing that my rhogam shot and when they take blood hurts worse. (i am a big baby) please give some advice on what it feels like? honestly

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Amy - posted on 01/11/2010

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The epidural is a miracle. I was in labor, hard labor and tried to tolerate the pain as long as possible. The worst part was the exams during labor for me. It hurt terribly. But after the epidural I didn't feel anything. The exams were painless and so were the contractions. I highly recommend it. But I also had one of the best anisthesiologists doing my epidural. So I felt nothing when they were giving it to me. Basically it numbs you from your wast down. You can still feel a little and move your legs a little. But it is hard to control your legs. But it will help you during your labor and enable you to concentrate more on what is happening. Good Luck!!!!

Elizabeth - posted on 01/11/2010

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I unfortunately had a really bad experience. I wasn't planning on getting one, though I guess it was good to have in place because I ended up needing an emergency c-section. It took six excruciating tries for them to finally get mine in place. Very painful. However, I was able to get a few hours sleep after-wards before I needed to start pushing. That's how much pain relief you can get from it. The ability to sleep through contractions. It was probably worth it.

Lindsay - posted on 01/11/2010

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I barely felt my epidural. They numbed the area first and then gave it to me. I would say that it felt about the same as a flu shot. But what is wonderful is you feel nothing afterward!! It was wonderful!! I am a mess when I hurt and everything after my waterbroke was HORRIBLE! After it I was able to sleep in between the doctor checks until I fully dilated. Good Luck, Congratulations! There is no more wonderful a feeling in the world than when you hold your little angel for the first time!

Christina - posted on 01/11/2010

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if you want the truth, it does sting as soon as they stick you with it, but it is worth it, i had my first baby in feb 09 and i couldnt fell a thing after i had it.but people are different some dont even feel it.me i love needles but the epidural, it doesnt hurt it just stings for about 2 seconds then it goes away.. i hope for the best to you and your new baby..and having a baby is the most wonderful expereince you can ever have, and the pain is totally worth it..good luck!!

Heather - posted on 01/11/2010

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nothing compared to labor pain! trust me if you cant take pain an epidural is the way to go!

Noelia - posted on 01/11/2010

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I have three boys... i had epidural in all my labors. The only thing that i felt was the pressure while the anestecia is going into my back...then comes a big relief.

Erin - posted on 01/11/2010

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The first thing they do is give you a numbing shot but that only feels like a bee sting (not even as bad as one) then you really can't feel anything. I had a scheduled c-section so I didn't have any contractions so I felt it all. But it wasn't bad at all, try not to worry:) good luck

Christina - posted on 01/11/2010

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It feels like a lil sting and then I could feel them inserting it but that's because it was touching the nerves on my spinal cord. It didn't hurt it just made me jump involuntarily.

Shea - posted on 01/11/2010

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im a HUGE baby too!. its crazy cuz im a nurse and stick people all the time. i was soooooo scared to get mine. i was crying hysterically when i tried to ask for it and continued to cry until the anesthesiologist left. but all i felt was the needle they use to numb you with, i didnt feel much pressure either. my mom stayed in the room with me (hubby is a big baby). i thought i was more scared to have the epidural then to give birth! i had a pretty rough labor and delivery... too long to tell the whole story. but i was induced and it went SLOOOOOWLY and they kept mentioning the possibility of having to do an emergency c-section so i went ahead and asked for the epidural because if i continued without it and something ended up happening then they would have had to put me under and my husband couldnt have been in the room for the birth. also mine wore off on half my body, because i didnt lay flat enough after it was inserted, and they also turned it off when i started pushing so i felt everything by the time she was out. my labor was 22 hours long with 2 hours of pushing

Danielle - posted on 01/11/2010

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well once you feel the contractions, that sharp needle going into your spine wont look so scary!! but it makes your legs feel really weird i still have a numb tingle in my right hip when i touch it and my baby is 18 mos

Amanda - posted on 01/11/2010

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epidurals are amazing!! it really dosent hurt as bad as you might of heard..it was more unconfortable than painful. but as soon as you get it in you dont feel a thing and i suggest you get some rest...only thing that hurt was the nurse pulling the tape off my back when it was time to take it out

Chelsea - posted on 01/11/2010

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the only thing that hurt for me, was the numbing shot.. felt like... a shot.. then it tingles through your body. the inserting, felt like a pinky wiggling in my back. most i said was "oh?!" "weeiiirrrrd" i was mainly worried about me moving and ripping it out, but, i guess theres like no such thing.

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I had one and it was nothing compared to the contractions! I would have done it again this time but my baby came way too fast! I thought it helped a lot, it made pushing nothing and all I felt was pressure not pain.

Rachel - posted on 01/11/2010

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I have 3 children and had an epidural with all of them. Labor for me was very painful but the epidural was a walk in the park. they give numbing medicine first and that doesn't hurt either. I tell everyone to get it if they can't handle the labor pains.

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labor hurts WAY worse than the epidural! I was terrified to get it because the thought of a needle in my spin was not a good one for me! but when it came down to it this is what happened..... they give a local anesthic which numbs the area they are going to be giving you the epidural. And the main thing to do when they are doing it is DO NOT MOVE! perfect placement is key! have you partner stand infront of you so you can focus on him and talk to him to make sure you dont move. it is more scary than painful. and it kicks in instantly! i fell asleep right after i laid back down! it was awesome! the numb feeling is kinda freaky though. but it goes away right when they stop it! i think it is great to do!

Alicia - posted on 01/11/2010

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I had my baby 9 months ago and i got an epidural. This was my 3rd child and my other too i didnt have one. The dr that did mine hit a nerve but it just was a sharp pain for a second and it was all gone. The shot didnt hurt as much as my rhogam shot. I loved having one. I would do it again in a heartbeat. Having suffered through 2 child births before it was a great experience without the pain. Hope you a great labor. How every you decide to go.

Kristen - posted on 01/11/2010

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Truthfully, I don't remember feeling it at all. Compared to what you're already feeling, it's nothing to be concerned about. I would just recommend considering how it might affect your laboring process - I have heard that it can affect the speed of labor both in speeding it up and slowing it down. Be sure to weigh the possiblities.

Jenn - posted on 01/11/2010

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You can't feel it. They numb the area before you get the epidural. Don't worry!!

Christal - posted on 01/11/2010

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to be honest, i dont remember. i remember being freaked out for nothing. i think it was just a pinch. and when its in you dont feel it.

Jodi - posted on 01/11/2010

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My Rogham shot hurt a lot worse for me. The worst part about the epidural was the first shot they give you to locally numb your back...it feels like a bad bee sting. Quite frankly though, in the throws of contractions like I was...I really didn't care about the pain as it was nothing compared to the contractions and was SOOOOO wroth it! I would say, just don't worry about it, when the times comes, you'll know whether or not you think a extra little prick is worth it for you! Best of luck!!!

Cailie - posted on 01/11/2010

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i am a huge baby when it comes to pain and i am scared to death of needles! they numb the area before they do it and i think that that was more painful than the epidural its self, but to me it felt like a hollow feeling within my spine but not painful. if you tell the person giving it to you how scared you are they will take great lenghts to help you feel realxed !

Tanya - posted on 01/11/2010

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oh and they let me husband beside me while giving me the needle cause i told them i was terrified of needles, and he held my hand :)

Tanya - posted on 01/11/2010

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honestly it was nothing. they numbed the area and made me not look so it was fabulous, pain free delivery. i was relaxed, even napped a bit when i was 9 cm !! i dont know why people dont get it, why be in pain when you can enjoy the best day of your life! best thing ever!!!

Cori - posted on 01/11/2010

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mine was terrible! it took them 4 tries and 2 anesthesiologists to get mine in!! It was ridiculous! one of the anesthesiologists was new but he was the one that got it in! i will never have one again if i can handle it! all though, the 15 minutes of pain that it took for them to get it in wasnt much worse than the labor plus i got a quick nap afterwards!

Vanessa - posted on 01/11/2010

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The more relaxed you are (I know it's easier said than done lol), the less it will hurt or be uncomfortable. I have 4 kids and was able to get an epidural with 3 of them, although it only worked with 2. When I had my first child the epidural wasn't put in right and it numbed my arms and shoulders and I felt the whole thing! (Apparently this hardly ever happens!) I finally figured out the best way to do it with my 4th (and final!) birth. I highly recommend sitting in a cross-legged position on the bed and put your head down and just hug your belly. Don't think of what is going on, just think of the beautiful baby you will soon have! I did that and barely felt it. TRUST ME I had 2 natural childbirths and they hurst sooooooooo much more than any needle ever could!! lol GOOD LUCK!

Danielle - posted on 01/11/2010

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The only part that I really felt was the needle to freeze the area...it felt kinda like a bee sting. The rest I could feel pressure but no pain. It wasn't bad at all, especially considering you'll be in labour.

Lydia - posted on 01/11/2010

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Its A Lil Uncomfortable And Painful, I Didnt Have Any Contractions To Distract Me As I Had A Planned C Section So I Was Very Nervous But It Was Quick And Very Effective Straight Away. Afterwards As It Was Wearing Off It Made My Body Itch Like Mad But Other Than That Its Great.

Catlin - posted on 01/11/2010

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They will put a topical anestheic on the injection site, so you shouldn't actually feel any pain. When I got mine, all i felt was a small pinch and then lots of pressure on my spine. Within 1 minute I was starting to numb, your feet get really heavy, and it works up your body until you cannot feel anything on your lower half. Instead of pain, all you feel is pressure. I had a c-section, so I was numbed the whole time and strapped to a table. The epidural did cause me to vomit a few minutes after I had it though, so be aware that it may be a side effect, especially if you aren't allowed to move.

Veronica - posted on 01/11/2010

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You will feel pressure and it is weird the worst part is the numb ing stick they give you I have had tow and a spinal block. they arent that bad I was very scared but by the time you are havin that baby and all the pain you will feel from that is much worse. it is not going to be that bad. The IV was the worst part for me though.

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on my first i felt the sensation of it being put in & i felt like it was being shoved up wards but after 9hours of labour on gas&air and i had had a sleeping tablet too.I was told i wasn't in labour and needed my rest.Well i just had it taken and i popped lol my water broke.i was so out of it i dint feel pain but my epidural didn't work by the time i had to give birth.my daughter was born half an hour after it was inserted.It wasnt sore being taken out also.What i did feel was mths of back pain from it.Being honest.:)



got a spinal block as i was being sectioned on my second felt nothing but thats a bit differnt as its not left in the back.wish you the best of luck.

Danielle - posted on 01/11/2010

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i am absolutely terrified of needles ( 21 years old and up until i got pregnant teared up whenever i had to get blood work done)
i got an epidural and was very uset to find out they wouldnt even let my boyfriend or a family member stay in the room with me to keep me calm, so told the nurse she had to talk to me and keep me distracted, i didnt want to know when the needle was going in. she talked to me as they cleaned the area and numbed it. i didnt feel when the put it in, but did feel discomfort as it was in me. having someone distract me helped tremendously.

Melissa - posted on 01/11/2010

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It's not as bad as people make it out to be. You will already be in pain from the contractions that this will just feel like w prick. For me it felt more like pressure rather than pain. However, it did make me feel nausous for a few minutes after I got the epidural. It's no biggie. If you feel at that time that you need it, don't feel bad. Hope this helps. Congrats and best of luck!!

Suchita - posted on 01/11/2010

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I honestly think,when you are in the situation you dont think about the needle at all! i honestly didnt feel any pain when the needle went in cos i was focused on the pain of the contraction an also i was taking the gas and air which made me high. Just dont think about what they are going to do with you and everything will go smoothly!

Goodluck and congrate:) x

Heather - posted on 01/11/2010

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its really not bad at all, its a little pinch and then pressure..just do as the nurse says, and try not to think about the pain focus on something else. Its instant relief, you will be gald you got. I got mine early becuase I didnt want to torture myself with labor pain and it was the best thing

Beth - posted on 01/11/2010

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I was a big baby too and I was scared to death. I hate needles and could not see them sticking one in my back. To tell you the truth they numbed me and I was having a contraction while they did it anyway and I didn't feel it at all. People who have tell me if feels like a sweat bea stung you. They have came a long way with them and you will do great.

Jessica - posted on 01/11/2010

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If you feel anything at all it may be more or less like a small sting or at least pressure. It really isn't worth worrying too much over. I had one during my first birth, but I opted out during my second so that the delivery would go faster. Trust me...it's all a matter of what you feel most comfortable with. If you are feeling too apprehensive there are other options you could discuss with your doctor or midwife.

Katelyn - posted on 01/11/2010

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I thought it was more uncomfortable then painful, its just a weird feeling! But it helps a lot!

Mandy - posted on 01/11/2010

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The needle doesn't even hurt as bad as a sweat bee, but if you're like me, i was focused so much on the pain of the contractions I didn't pay attention to the needle. When they got the needle in, it was like instant relief. I couldn't have made it through without it.

Sarah - posted on 01/11/2010

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I was totally against having one, but I had to be induced and the labor came so fast that I needed help! It did hurt, but they give a shot to numb the area 1st, then you feel a little pain and alot of pressure. After words I couldn't feel anything below my waist. They turned it off when it was time to push so I could feel the contractions. I would definitely do it again with the next one!

Heather - posted on 01/11/2010

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I had one right before my surgery and I didn't feel it being given to me because they numbed the area right before they gave it to me. It numbed me from my waist down. I am also a big baby when it comes to stuff like that.

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