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Old 02-07-2011, 07:10 PM   #1
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In case I don't get an epidural . . .

This is baby #3 and I got epidurals with the first two, but I'm thinking I'm going to try go as long as possible and maybe even all the way without out an epidural. My previous two labors were completely different. With DD#1 my water broke and contractions never started so I ended up on pitocin (evil!) and was in complete hell until I got the epidural. With DD#2 my body did its thing, and I just decided to go ahead and get epidural when I got to the hospital (was 3cm). With both labors, my contractions completely stalled out when it came time to push. Never needed intervention, just have to wait 10 minutes between contractions or push in between contractions.

So I'm 34 weeks on Wednesday, and I'm looking for suggestions on techniques to deal with labor au natural. Tell me where to look - books, websites, videos. Thanks!
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Old 02-07-2011, 08:50 PM   #2
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

I read the Bradley Method book and listened to Hypbabies CD. I thought that was good preparation, even though things did not go as planned.
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Old 02-07-2011, 09:03 PM   #3
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

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I read the Bradley Method book and listened to Hypbabies CD. I thought that was good preparation, even though things did not go as planned.
like katie I also read Bradley Method Book. It was quite informative. I went with as little intervention as possible. Had I known and had a little more support I would have been without pitocin. I did not do any pain meds. Every woman and every pregnancy is different. Good luck and enjoy your experience.
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Old 02-07-2011, 09:02 PM   #4
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

I didn't take any courses, b/c I didn't want to fork out the extra dollars. So, I just read inspirational stories of natural births, and what helped them through.

I focused on my breathing and moving around(sitting or laying down made things worse), and most importantly I distracted myself from the pain....visualized happy memories, thought of my son's smiling face, etc. It worked!
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:31 PM   #5
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

in my opinion, you just have to have a cause... let me explain.

If you go in all willy-nilly saying I'll try for natural, most likely it won't happen, I don't mean to be snarky, but really that seems to be the way it happens unless it's lightning fast.

BUT, if you have a cause (ie: I don't want my baby to have drugs, I don't want to push while on my back, I want to be able to get up, etc.) then it's much easier IMO.

My cause was that I didn't want to push on my back, I wanted to let gravity help AND I was determined to have a waterbirth and at our hossy - epi = NO waterbirth (obviously). Granted I got to the hospital and ds2 was born 15 minutes later, so there wasn't much time to sway me, BUT it was easy to not go in earlier because, what was the point? All i needed them for was to actually deliver the baby and I wanted the tub .

So - my suggestion, find a legitimate "cause" and it will help a ton.
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Old 02-08-2011, 10:13 AM   #6
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

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Originally Posted by smblake View Post
in my opinion, you just have to have a cause... let me explain.

If you go in all willy-nilly saying I'll try for natural, most likely it won't happen, I don't mean to be snarky, but really that seems to be the way it happens unless it's lightning fast.

BUT, if you have a cause (ie: I don't want my baby to have drugs, I don't want to push while on my back, I want to be able to get up, etc.) then it's much easier IMO.

My cause was that I didn't want to push on my back, I wanted to let gravity help AND I was determined to have a waterbirth and at our hossy - epi = NO waterbirth (obviously). Granted I got to the hospital and ds2 was born 15 minutes later, so there wasn't much time to sway me, BUT it was easy to not go in earlier because, what was the point? All i needed them for was to actually deliver the baby and I wanted the tub .

So - my suggestion, find a legitimate "cause" and it will help a ton.
Yoda comes to mind: "Do or do not; there is no try."

Movement is really helpful in managing labor, as is any kind of deep relaxation you are into. Like a PP said, yoga is good preparation.

There's a book called Active Birth that gives lots of different labor positions that you may find helpful. Have lots of possibilities available, like a birth ball, a rocking chair, leaning over a chair or onto pillows, etc. Those things also often help baby get into a better position in each stage of the process, speeding things up.

I personally use HypnoBabies and it is amazing, but it requires a fair amount of practice to get into.
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:38 PM   #7
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

My best advice is to think of things that comfort and relax you when you are feeling icky (sick, grumpy, on your period...) and incorporate as many of those kinds of things as possible. I didn't take any courses or read much about specific techniques but I thought a lot about what would comfort me and help me feel more at ease. It also helps to read birth stories of other women who birthed naturally (in the case of a hospital birth reading about moms who birthed naturally in a hospital setting is especially encouraging). Try to work through any doubts you have ahead of time and be confident in what your body is capable of. Staying positive is key.
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Old 02-08-2011, 08:02 AM   #8
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

Melissa - I totally get needing to have a cause. I guess I want to have a faster labor, which I believe I would if I didn't get an epidural and end up laying in bed. I am going to wait longer to go to the hospital this time, so hopefully I'll be further along. I know I can at least go longer without getting an epidural and trust my body more.

My library carries the Bradley Method, although its checked out until the 25th. That still gives me about a month. I really don't know anything about breathing or focusing, so I'm really intersted in that. It would have really helped the first time around when I had 8 hours of pitocin contractions that were on top of each other.

Thanks for the replies ladies!
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Old 02-08-2011, 08:12 AM   #9
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

I love this site! http://www.birthingnaturally.net/
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Old 02-08-2011, 08:39 AM   #10
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Re: In case I don't get an epidural . . .

Have a plan if you want to have a natural birth. Have a coach. My doula was my lifesaver during my last labor. Having her coach me through contractions made all of the difference in the world in terms of coping w/the pain.
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