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Old 02-25-2012, 03:04 PM   #11
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The #1 fear that people have of going natural I think is the pain. What few people are told though is that childbirth does NOT have to be unbearably painful. I had my first child in a hospital naturally and it was pretty intense. I had complete back labor and at times it felt like my back was going to break. For me though, an epi or any pain meds was not even an option. I was not willing to impose that kind of risk on my child no matter how painful it was for me at the time. The pain is so temporary in the large scope of things. My second baby was born at home in the water. Towards the end, I actually had full contractions that did not even hurt at all. There are ways of making noises and ways to breath, that actually allow your body to dilate with little to no pain. It is something you need to practice though before labor begins. I wish more than anything that more women were empowered with the knowledge that childbirth is something that their bodies were made for, and does not have to be this scary, painful, unbearable process. Your mind controls your body, and the more fear and stories you hear of the "horrors" of childbirth, in reality, the more painful it will be. So ultimately, for me, there is now no cons to a natural birth. The pros are many though......

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Old 02-25-2012, 07:42 PM   #12
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

I view epi's as introducing an unnecessary level of risk to the process. There are many well known both short and long term side effects of getting an epidural. I guess I just feel like the discomfort and pain won't cause lasting effects. It may not be pleasant, it may be quite intense, but it does not add side effects to my labor.

I guess part of my reasoning though is that I give birth at home with a trusted birth team. In order for me to cope with the pain (I'm a huge wimp) I have to let everything else around me go and the only way I can do that is that I know no one is going to do anything or push anything I wouldn't want. I don't feel a need to be totally present with the ability to constantly defend myself like I'm certain I would feel in a hospital setting. I know it is safe for me to mentally check out.

Having said that, I think epi's do have their place and I don't begrudge anyone for getting one (that's their decision to make not mine; I do think it's unfortunate our society pushes fear into the process and pain relief as a necessity but that's a different soap box). There are circumstances under which I would consider getting one including an extremely long and intense labor (several days+) where exhaustion was introducing risk to the situation. At that point the risk of the epi may be less than effects of exhaustion. I'm sure there are other situations where the risk might be outweighed but that is the first one that comes to mind.
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Old 02-26-2012, 03:47 AM   #13
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

I didn't intend to get the epidural. However a posterior baby as well as pitocin caused unimaginable pain with back labor and no break from contractions. By the way, I had the epi shut off for pushing. i felt every second of the pushing stage, crowning, etc. i am not fond of the memory, but pushing while numb is probably ridiculously hard i'd imagine.

also, the epi sped up my labor. I went in at 5 cm. after 6 hours of pitocin and horrible pain, i had not dilated at all, probably because i couldn't relax (i planned a birth center birth and ended up with induction!) i got the epi and the nurse checked me about 10 minutes later and I had dilated 2 cm.

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Old 02-26-2012, 06:46 AM   #14
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

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There are ways of making noises and ways to breath, that actually allow your body to dilate with little to no pain. It is something you need to practice though before labor begins. I wish more than anything that more women were empowered with the knowledge that childbirth is something that their bodies were made for, and does not have to be this scary, painful, unbearable process.
i totally agree with this. giving birth naturally without pain medication is one of the most empowering things you can ever do.
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Old 02-26-2012, 07:49 AM   #15
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

I was induced at 37 weeks with my daughter due to pre-eclampsia. She was posterior and I had wicked back labor as well as the pitocin, and it was SO painful, but an epi was NOT an option for me. I survived, but it wasn't fun. I was somewhat unprepared for birth because I missed some of my birthing classes since I was induced early, so I missed some of the helpful techniques that help with the pain. Can anyone offer some advice for this time that may help? So far I'm 38 weeks and baby is right where he should be, so I'm hoping this labor will be easier. It didn't even hit me until now that I haven't really done much to prepare for the actual labor part of this baby. With a VERY active 3 yr old and a full-time job, it apparently slipped my mind somehow, and here I sit at 38 weeks wondering WHY I didn't take another birthing class!
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:09 AM   #16
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

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Can anyone offer some advice for this time that may help? So far I'm 38 weeks and baby is right where he should be, so I'm hoping this labor will be easier.
For my first I was able to get in a tub at the hospital I was in. It saved me. I am nervous too that my second will either be harder or I won't have access to a room with a tub. I plan to get in the shower. I know some people try to focus on something else to help them but I just tried breathing and thinking about each in/out breath. Laying down is the absolute WORST possible thing to do IMO. I was "fine" enough until I got out of the tub (bc I felt transition beginning and the urge to push). I got back in bed bc I thought baby was going to fall out. Then had to wait a few AGONIZING minutes on the doctor. I'm sure it was partly just because it WAS transition, but it did not help being in that bed.

Maybe some others can chime in with ways to cope. I took bradley and the method of breathing slowly did help for me. Hubby was a very active participant in the birth.
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:23 AM   #17
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

We have 2 labor tubs at our hospital, so I am going to try my best to get a room with one! I even put in my birth plan how much I want the labor tub!
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Old 02-26-2012, 10:20 AM   #18
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

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Can anyone offer some advice for this time that may help? So far I'm 38 weeks and baby is right where he should be, so I'm hoping this labor will be easier. It didn't even hit me until now that I haven't really done much to prepare for the actual labor part of this baby. With a VERY active 3 yr old and a full-time job, it apparently slipped my mind somehow, and here I sit at 38 weeks wondering WHY I didn't take another birthing class!
every labor is different, try to come up with things that make you feel better as labor progresses, whatever that might be. for me these are the things that worked great at various different points during labor: vocalizing; closing my eyes and leaning over the bed or sink, or my husband; during early labor i was laying on the hospital bed in a reclined position with my legs propped up & with lots of pillows (getting a foot massage helps too); standing up during the final phases of labor always felt good to me; taking a shower can take your mind off of things; keeping yourself distracted can also help.

good luck and congrats!
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Old 02-26-2012, 07:13 PM   #19
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

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Originally Posted by KatieGrace View Post
I was induced at 37 weeks with my daughter due to pre-eclampsia. She was posterior and I had wicked back labor as well as the pitocin, and it was SO painful, but an epi was NOT an option for me. I survived, but it wasn't fun. I was somewhat unprepared for birth because I missed some of my birthing classes since I was induced early, so I missed some of the helpful techniques that help with the pain. Can anyone offer some advice for this time that may help? So far I'm 38 weeks and baby is right where he should be, so I'm hoping this labor will be easier. It didn't even hit me until now that I haven't really done much to prepare for the actual labor part of this baby. With a VERY active 3 yr old and a full-time job, it apparently slipped my mind somehow, and here I sit at 38 weeks wondering WHY I didn't take another birthing class!
I think that exercising and doing weights really helped me to relax during the contractions. I don't know if you've been able to do that at all during this pregnancy, but it might be helpful to think about the contractions like that- not as something pathological that you have to just endure, but like a muscle flexing and working that you need to work with and breath through. I guess I think that the exercising was more helpful MENTALLY and psychologically even than physically, although I'm sure it was helpful to stay fit. Having the baby in a better position is also absolutely helpful and should make everything easier. Avoiding pitocin will also help a lot!

Just wanted to say also that I didn't feel the need to vocalize or chant or anything during my labor, and I was mostly by myself- really I just breathed and relaxed as much as possible. I did take a shower and then a bath, then I was pushing! It was a lot easier than I thought it would be. I'm also 38 weeks and wondering what this one will bring
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Old 02-26-2012, 07:43 PM   #20
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Re: The PRO's (and con's) of Natural Childbirth

For me the pros were

- I was able to stay mobile
- I could feel everything
- Because I could feel everything I could work with my body
- I was very connected with what was going on
- My son was very alert when he was born
- Breastfeeding was a heck of a lot easier
- I felt great after birth
- I got the oxytocin rush/high
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