When I was pregnant, I already decided that I was going to get an epidural for pain relief. However, once I got to the hospital, I found out the anesthesiologist would not be ready to see me immediately. This meant I had to use natural labor pain relief, before receiving an epidural. This post discusses different natural labor pain strategies you can use.
Natural Labor Pain Relief Techniques
I didn’t use water for my birth, but I spoke with several mothers who used water births. During a water birth, women give birth in a tub of warm water. According to the American Pregnancy Association, there are several benefits associated with water births, including:
- The water may lower stress-related hormones, which allows the release of endorphins.
- Women can move easier and do new positions to help feel more comfortable.
- Warm water can make women feel more calm, relaxed and tranquil.
Participating in activities to help distract from pain can be useful in managing pain during early labor. Going for a walk was one activity that helped distract me from pain during early labor.
My partner also showed me some funny videos on his phone during some of my contractions to help distract me from pain I was experiencing. I had a friend who told me she did challenging word puzzles to help distract her in the early stages of her labor.
An acquaintance once told me that during a painful contraction, her husband dismissed her pain by saying that his mother “had it worse,” because she had a miscarriage in the bathroom by herself and at least her husband was with her during labor.
In his eyes, he was being helpful. In her eyes, she would have slapped him if she wasn’t experiencing a painful contraction. Don’t underestimate the important of having a positive support system around you to help manage pain.
You need awesome people around you to support you, encourage you, and help you get through labor. Tell the negative people to stay home.
Listening to music helped me manage my pain during the first stage of labor. I liked listening to soft and slow songs to help relax. Some women may prefer loud music to help distract them from pain. In the early stages of labor, singing along with music might also help.
Not using a birth ball in labor was one of my biggest regrets. The birth ball can be an effective pain management tool during labor. The birth ball helps you get in different positions during labor, which can help manage your pain.
Another natural labor pain relief technique is meditation. Meditation is well known to help increase relaxation, decrease anxiety, and manage depression. However, meditation can also be used to help manage pain during labor.
I used meditation during my labor, which I found beneficial for natural pain relief before I received my epidural later in the process.
Visualization techniques can be a useful natural pain relief technique. When I had one of my contractions, I used visualization. I closed my eyes, pictured myself in the ocean, and was free of pain.
I imagined how soothing the water would feel around my body. I thought about the cool breeze against my face.
Going through labor is a unique experience like no other. It’s certainly not an easy or pain-free process. However, applying some labor pain relief techniques can help your experience go a little smoother.
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