Couple of Questions

Discussion in 'Labour & Birth' started by kittykitchn, Mar 4, 2016.

  1. kittykitchn

    kittykitchn Well-Known Member

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    I haven't thought about labour and birth options too much, my anxiety just can't deal with it! Taking one day at a time, but am aware it's creeping up...

    I don't know what I can and can't do. Obviously will speak to midwife and I assume write a birth plan, but before putting anything to paper I want to know if certain things are even possible.

    With no expectations and not sure how I'll deal with it, how will I know prior if I want pain relief? I believe an epidural has to be booked in advance (correct me if I'm wrong).

    I absolutely know I want an active labour for as long as possible - I deal with general pain by pacing and rocking so know I don't want to just be laying on a bed.

    Second, I don't necessarily want a water birth but I would really really like to spend some time in water as I also generally use this as pain relief as well.

    I highly doubt I will do anything naturally and am completely up for any pain relief that is thrown at me, however - I would like to see how far I can get on my own before an epidural. Am I able to have pool time first and then decide to have the epidural if it gets too much? Or do I have to decide either/or?
     
  2. Phoenix85

    Phoenix85 Well-Known Member

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    No you can do what you want as long as a birth pool/birth pool room is free when you go into labour.

    If not you can also ask if there is a bath you can use (I was induced and was able to use the bath in the induction suite during early labour).
    Of course you can also stay home as long as you are comfortable and use your own bath. Most maternity units do not want you to come in too soon anyway, think the contractions are supposed to be regular and 5 minutes apart or less before you get there.

    You only need to ask for the epidural early enough in the labour to get it in before you're expected to deliver. If you're at or almost at the pushing stage it'd be too late, but otherwise it's fine, the midwives will advise you. And the only other barrier to getting it is if the anesthetist(s) are in theatre at the point you ask for it, which could delay it.

    You are definitely allowed to ask for a water birth and then change your mind if you find you can't cope with that alone and want something stronger (whether that's meptid or pethidine or epi etc is up to you.

    I birthed two, induced both times, and had pethidine.
    This time if I'm not induced (planning not to be) I'm not planning to have anything.

    My advice would be to be as mobile as you can be and try to relax and not tense up, when you react against the contractions by tensing etc they feel worse.

    I'm sure you'll be fine, especially if you start off with a water birth as that really helps with the contractions.
     
  3. MrsS15

    MrsS15 Well-Known Member

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    Personally, and some may disagree with this, I wouldn't recommend you write a birth plan. My sisters gave me that advice and I'm so glad they did. I had in my head what I'd have liked my labour to be like and in the end the complete opposite happened. If I had a strict birth plan I think I would have been a lot more disappointed than I was. Write what you would like and not like, but don't be dead set.

    I had a very long labour. From first strong contraction to Lu being born I was 42 hours. I managed 25 of those with no pain relief at all. Like you said, I like to pace and rock and love water so I done all of these. I walked about as much as I could and rocked on the edge of the sofa with hubby rubbing my back. I also had 2 baths at home. When I went into hospital I continued to walk the ward up and down and had a further 2 baths (no water pool was available). I eventually got a shot of pethidine, which I've since discovered is a huge cause of vomiting as a side effect which I proceeded to do for hours (exorcist style) so that is something I'd never have again. Just to give you a heads up! Not everyone has the same reaction but I'd rather tell you incase you aren't aware!

    Epidurals don't need to be booked either. But you can be refused one if you're too far gone! After about 30hrs and no sleep I tried the G&A which I actually liked, biting down on the mouth piece was the best bit :lol: I eventually wasn't progressing so had to go on a drip and they convinced me to get an epidural. Unfortunately I was one of the rare people who it only worked down one side on so I could still feel my contractions on my left side, it was so strange. So I've been told I won't be offered one in future :lol: I find it quite amusing! My sister loved her epidural though, most people do when they get one so by all means take one if you get to the point you're struggling!

    My best advice is go in with all your options open. Don't restrict yourself! My sister said to me that baby is coming out one way or the other so suck it up buttercup. A bit cruel but it actually helped my anxiety. Through the whole labour I kept saying to myself you can do this, your sister is the biggest wimp on the planet and she managed it :lol: haha! I know that's mean but it got me through!! x
     
    #3 MrsS15, Mar 4, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  4. Phoenix85

    Phoenix85 Well-Known Member

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    About the pethidine, yes it can make you sick, but they normally give you some anti-sickness meds at the same time as the pethidine.

    I had pethidine both times and wasn't sick at all, but I guess it's different for everyone.

    As it happens I wouldn't choose it again this time though.

    I tried gas & air with my first two but I hated it, that made me feel sick, which is why I asked for pethidine :(

    This time I am doing hypnobirthing and hoping to go without anything as I dislike G&A and am not keen on the other drugs due to them crossing the placenta or making you feel 'out of it' etc, but we shall see lol.

    Personally I disagree with not having a birth plan.

    Most midwives will try to do what you want - if they don't know your preferences for labour, how can they try to make sure you get what you want??

    Things like immediate skin to skin after birth (if that's what you want) or delayed cord clamping etc are important to put on your birth plan IMO.,

    If you feel strongly that you do NOT want a certain pain relief, you need to make sure the midwives know that because in the height of labour women say allsorts and will likely agree to anything if you thought it'd help ;)
    If you specifically state you would rather not have x/y/z unless absolutely necessary, the midwives will do more to offer you an alternative.

    I agree it can be good to go with an open mind, but if there are things you definitely do or do not want, writing it down increases the likelihood of you having your wishes followed as all midwives should be reading your birth plan when they come to attend to you.
     
    #4 Phoenix85, Mar 4, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  5. El1en

    El1en Well-Known Member

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    Another vote for NOT writing a birth plan here. When pregnant I assumed at some point the midwife would write one with me but this never happened and it wasn't necessary. I agree with above if I'd have had stuff written down I would have wanted to stick to it

    For me, I was keen on a water birth but I was open minded, I went into the water at 4cm dilated. After a while the pain was awful (back labour) and I was told if I wanted to come out I could have pethidine but that I couldn't go back in the water if I did. I got out and had the pethidine as the g&a was making me light headed and sick. When I got out the water I was 9cm

    Unfortunately for me my baby got stuck and I ended up being blue lighted to the city hospital as the midwife led unit at my local hospital wasn't going to be able to get her out. As soon as I got to the city I asked for an epidural. Throughout my pregnant I was expected to deliver in the local unit where an epidural was not available but I always knew in my head if things went wrong and I ended up in the city of take whatever I could get, I'm so glad I did

    The main point from me is that nothing is set in stone, things can change so don't get too hung up on a plan
     
    #5 El1en, Mar 4, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  6. MrsS15

    MrsS15 Well-Known Member

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    Well phoenix that's why I said write what you'd like and not like ie as you said skin to skin etc. I put bullet points of things I would like and would not like but added I was open to going with the flow. Particularly if, like kitty, it's a first labour so we have no idea what to expect. I just don't think you can say I will not have this and I absolutely want this when it's your first and you have no idea whatsoever how you'll cope with the pain, what your body will agree with and what you'll be comfortable with at the time!

    Try and be as open minded as you can kitty and don't feel you should or shouldn't do anything xx
     
    #6 MrsS15, Mar 4, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  7. russellmuscle

    russellmuscle Well-Known Member

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    I always say write something down. Only because if there are things you wanna do and you have the chance then it adds to a good birthing experience. It should be kept at the side of your mind though that some of the things you want to try might not be achieved and likewise if there are things that you have put down but actually want to change your mind and do something else.

    My birthing plan was very loose because I was induced so, kinda prepared for anything down to emergency c sec, so I just noted an ideal things just like you have expressed in your opening post. Tell MW your ideal and what your open and not open to and note it. I expressed open for pain meds except epidural and a few mins before he came out I was shouting for epidural which I am glad I didnt get now, but you can always change your mind given the situation and mood.

    There were parts of my labour I was pretty out of it and agreed for certain things that I might not have went with before hand so its always good to atleast have a list of wants and dont wants, esp where pain relief is concerned. If your completely open to any pain meds its a simple short sentence. The more open you are the less youll need to put of course, so try not to think of it as a formal thing, its literally a list (or perhaps a few) of preferences..

    xxxx
     
    #7 russellmuscle, Mar 4, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2016
  8. ShowingPromise

    ShowingPromise Well-Known Member

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    My midwife didn't read my birth plan but did ask me questions about pain relief/skin to skin etc. Can't hurt to write your preferences down but I personally wouldn't write another birth plan if I had another baby.
    I'd say go in with an open mind and see how you cope at each stage. You never know, you might fly though it on gas and air!! Try and be positive :)
     
  9. kittyrooroo

    kittyrooroo Well-Known Member

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    I won't be doing a birth plan as such this time. I'll just write what I want and what I don't want. I definitely won't be gettin pethidine again, I was very very very very sick and that just made the contractions even harder to deal with. The last thing you want with intense contractions is trying to find somewhere to be sick! Horrible. But hope its different for everyone else.

    I enjoyed the birthing pool, I had a couple of baths, the midwife put some oils into it to help me relax which was quite nice. I'm hoping for a water birth next time but I'm not sure if I'm allowed yet since I had a large blood loss last time. I definitely want to be active too, the thought of laying in a bed makes me panic.

    I ended up with an epi and amazing as it was, it slowed contractions and I also didn't appreciate the catheter afterwards.

    Definitely go with an open mind and just take what you need to get through it at the time. Xxx
     
  10. flexilexi394

    flexilexi394 Well-Known Member

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    It is so hard to know when it is your first.

    I wrote a birth plan for Sofia's birth, I turned up on labour ward and I knew I wanted a water birth. Well, someone was in the only birthing pool at the hospital, so that was a no go. There wasn't a lot else on my birthing plan from last time apart from just see how it goes, and for baby to have vitamin k and I wanted skin to skin afterwards.

    Well, skin to skin didn't happen for very long at all, I was carted off to theatre to be stitched up and my whole bloody family were camped outside the room so everyone came flooding in once she was born!

    Because sofia all of a sudden came out, that made me tear badly so my midwife has advised me against actually delivering in the water, but I really enjoyed a bath when I was in labour last time. So I want a water birth but I will probably be made to get out for delivery.

    My advice is don't set yourself up for something, then find that it all starts falling apart on the day. I was really really gutted when I couldn't have my water birth and I don't want to feel that disappointed again really. I have already filled in my birth plan and it pretty much says open to options on pain relief (last time I managed on gas and air alone) and that I want the baby to have vitamin K and I want at least an hour of skin to skin contact. The rest, I think I will just deal with at the time. I am going to a lovely birthing unit that is newly built at the hospital with 6 birthing pools so I will labour in water as long as I can! I had a very active labour last time and it really helped me
     
  11. caseysmummy11

    caseysmummy11 Well-Known Member

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    My midwife wrote a kind of birth plan with me with my first ( 5 years ago ) at 37 weeks. We put down I'd like to try the pool if available. That I wanted baby to have vitamin k injection at birth and whether or not I wanted the injection to help speed the placenta up. And pain relief we put open minded. I had a very good experience with my son. I laboured at home over night ( purely because I wasn't sure I was definitely in labour lol) I went I when I couldn't walk or talk through contractions and was 5 -6 cm. It was early morning and luckily the pool was available she gave me some gas and air which I found helped me lots with both my labours. It takes a while to fill the pool up but when I got into the pool I stated in until I was 8pm then got out and laboured on the bed which I wish I hadn't as I was on my back and I felt like it slowed everything down I asked for an epidural at 9cm and was told I was too far gone so I carried on with gas and air. Had my son by 11.50am then was discharged by 5pm. I was terrified for giving birth so all the way through I tried to keep an open mind and said to myself I will try just using gas and air but if I do need anything else I would get it if I could. Xxx
     
  12. Lolie14

    Lolie14 Well-Known Member

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    I didn't have a birth plan and due to having fibroids I was hooked up with a canula so knew there wasn't much point. I told my partner that I definitely did not want an epidural and that was all I had given thought to. I was lucky and my contractions were instant from the minute my waters went, just a minute apart and I had her within 5 hours. A completely different birth than what I imagined my first to be!:) Gas and air were my best friends and took away pretty much all of my labour pains. Some of my periods hurt more than my birthing experience!
     
  13. russellmuscle

    russellmuscle Well-Known Member

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    I would say the next one will be more detailed only because I know what to expect and know what id want and not want due to my last labour. I had a fab labour all in all but Id like to add a few things like delyed cord clamping etc.. Something I didnt even know about first time round.

    But its always good to start somewhere lol.

    xxxx
     
  14. Rose83

    Rose83 Well-Known Member

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    I didn't write a birth plan for my daughter and won't be writing one for this baby either. My waters went naturally but I had grade 3 meconium with foetal distress so had to be hooked up to monitors from the start and for the whole 18 hours so had I wanted a water birth that would have been out the window. Also I had to be consultant led which with my hospital also meant no water births as they are done in midwife led section. I had an epidural and definitely want the option of one again and that too is also only done on consultant led labour suite where I am so that's the only thing I needed to specify. Basically I think having no plan is good because if it's your first birth then you have no idea how it will feel and if you have set ideas of 'I don't want x' then you might be pushing yourself to go through more than you really need to. In the end I had everything, g&a, diamorphine, epidural (topped up 3 times) and then full spinal for a forceps in theatre delivery. Hope this birth will be a bit more straightforward but I'm not scared of any of it and won't rule anything out but you have to do what you think is right for you x
     
  15. Emmam1982

    Emmam1982 Well-Known Member

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    I think you need to have some sort of idea of what you want in labour-even if it's more a note of what you don't want.
    My birth plan consists of a chat with my midwife and notes saying that I want baby to have vit k, I want symetrine or whatever it's called to assist with delivering the placenta, I know I'd prefer to labour with only gas and air, I would prefer to be cut rather than left to tear, that I don't mind continuos monitoring but would like the option to be mobile if I want to be. I want baby delivering onto me if possible for skin to skin and his dad to cut the cord. I know that I don't want an epidural. These things really need to be thought about prior to birth in my opinion x
     
  16. Rooster30

    Rooster30 Well-Known Member

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    I also didn't write a birth plan. I literally wrote a few bullet points but that was more for after the birth than for the labour (vitamin K, skin to skin and OH to tell me gender). I was very open minded. My son had to be induced and I had an epidural and forceps delivery. My daughter came naturally and gave birth to her in water. You never know what your labour may bring or how the pain will be and I felt best equipped to go in with an open mind and see what happens.

    I actually didn't hugely fancy a water birth and ended up having one because I was offered it as a pain relief (being open minded, I gave it go) - then it was too late to hop out.

    Unless you are dead set on a certain way of giving birth then I wouldn't bother.

    The end game is to make sure to get a healthy baby and healthy mummy. That's it. And that is one massive accomplishment.

    Oh I was sick throughout my labour for my son, it took two anti sickness meds to stop it and I didn't have pethidine. I thought I got away with the sick with my daughter but it just saved it for after labour instead. Me and labours = vomit.
     

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