lack of birthing classes and a lot of questions

Discussion in 'Labour & Birth' started by soffphie, Apr 27, 2020.

  1. soffphie

    soffphie Well-Known Member

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    Hi ladies, because of lack of birthing classes im finding myself having to ask on here! i fully intended to ask my midwife last time i saw her but because of the usual bad bp/protein in urine it didnt get discussed and i was sent instantly to hospital (so annoying tbh!) anyway.. its a bit of a long ole' list but i have some questions and would LOVE/NEED insight!!

    so..
    How good or not is Gas/Air
    How good or not is Pethadine (what does pethadine do that gas/air doesnt)
    How good is Pethadine against a Epi?
    Are there any after birth side effects from the 2 above?
    Epi - i know this is the only one that pretty much guarantees pain free/numb birth but.. how long does the unable to walk side effects last after birth? Is it particually dangerous/have bad side effects compared to gas/air? Are there any reasons why you would not be allowed a Epi? does a induction at 37 weeks count against you not being allowed one?
    And lastly, how actual bad will this be in all honesty?

    Oh, nearly forgot.. wot should i wear in labour? im guessing theres no point in wearing knickers into the labour ward for example? (ill pack some tho obviously) i know this probably sounds a really stupid thing to ask tbh :)
     
  2. SockVortex

    SockVortex Well-Known Member

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    Re Pethadine. My mum thought this was amazing as she had it when giving birth to me. She still remembers the name of it 33 years later so I reckon it's pretty effective! Haha.
     
  3. EllieH

    EllieH Well-Known Member

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    Ok I I only use gas and air for first baby, had to come off it at the end as I was concentrating more on my breathing than pushing though, it is good.

    pethadine: I was getting close to pushing and my contractions were ramping up so asked for it, midwife gave it and said give it ten minutes, 15 minutes later I’m asking why it hasn’t worked and she told me it would have just taken the edge off the stronger contractions so I didn’t actually feel a difference.

    now I did want an epi, but I was too close to giving birth, heard great things about them from other people.

    with current situations going on atm, I don’t know how close you are to giving birth but if you do have an epi then dad has to leave once baby is here, you’re on your own in hospital with a newborn having to ring the buzzer to get the midwife to do things etc

    Ultimately they’re all safe for baby, they say pethidine is suppose to make baby a bit sleepy at first, but in all fairness I got to have a shower and sort myself whilst baby had a nap. Not sure about epi effect on baby.

    Induction isn’t a reason why you can have an epi, think only thing that would be is any history maybe, with spine etc, idk

    If you’re being induced, wear something comfortable and wear knickers haha so you can walk around to help contractions get going, when I had my waters broken they went everywhere and I didn’t have my spare clothes yet, would have been no point as would have just soaked through all of them if I had changed. So ended up in hospital gown, I would choose a nighty or long top, to wear in labour ward but I think I just had a top with sheet over my legs with second and bikini top with first as was in the pool for the labour.

    sorry for such a long post
    Hope I’ve helped
     
  4. Summerwine

    Summerwine Well-Known Member

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    I cant answer a lot of your questions as I only had gas and air which I found really useful. Made me feel a bit like the room was spinning-that feeling you get when you start to feel drunk? It was a good distraction from the pain.

    I've had 2 inductions - it sounds like that's what you're having? I found them both to be great experiences. Yes it hurts, but labour also felt empowering for me, and you know you're working towards something! The only time I wished I'd asked for an epidural was when I was being stitched up after!

    I wore normal clothes in both times and had a nightie packed to change into when I was in 'established' labour.

    Hope this helps a little!!
     
  5. chattychar1990

    chattychar1990 Well-Known Member

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    I know a few friends that has gone through the whole of labour with just gas and air, it obviously doesn't take away the pain though.
    When i spoke to my mum about pethadine she said its not really worth it. Its only effective for around 3 hours, and it doesn't actually work on everyone. It doesn't take all of the pain away, it just relax's you and lessens the pain of your contractions. It makes baby drowsy too which could slow down labour.
    Epidural on the other hand will block out ALL pain, you basically wont feel a thing (amazing in my eyes haha) but you wont really be able to do much after you have given birth as a catheter will be inserted as you wont be able to go to the loo on your own and you wont be able to do much on your own. You just have to weigh all the pros and cons up.
    And in all honesty, from what i have heard from all friends - labour is AWFUL lol. But most women go through it again so cant be that bad.

    Also i would say to wear button up nighties in labour. x
     
  6. MoominGirl

    MoominGirl Well-Known Member

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    As for how useful various methods of pain relief are, that varies hugely on so many factors. I had an unexpected complicated delivery. From my own experience, I found gas and air useful in the earlier stages but then less so. I think if things had been more straightforward and things had been less stressful, I'd have found it useful for longer.

    I didn't have pethidine so can't comment on that. Main downside is it can pass to the baby so they won't give it if they think delivery will be soon as baby will be really sleepy.

    I did have an epidural and I can say categorically that it most certainly does not guarantee a pain free birth!! My circumstances were unusual in that it failed and I will stress that this is extremely uncommon! When it worked, it worked well though still not completely pain free but it was all a bit of a disaster when it didn't. I ended up with a spinal block and was on my feet after 2 hours. Other than that 2 hours, I wouldn't say I was overly restricted physically than if I hadn't had the block.

    Induction won't stop you getting an epidural, usually only if you're too far gone or have issues with your spine etc.

    As for what to wear, something comfy. I ended up in a hospital gown as it was just easier and changed into my own after.

    As for how bad it is, every midwife I saw considered my experience traumatic and yes it was pretty damn awful. However I found my peace with it pretty quickly. I would absolutely have another baby and the experience wouldn't affect that in the slightest. My best way of summing up is if I had to choose between that labour as bad as it was or establish breastfeeding again exactly as it was, I'd choose labour every time!! I'm not sure what that says about me, labour or breastfeeding :rotfl::rotfl:
     
  7. WinterWolf

    WinterWolf Well-Known Member

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    Gas and air makes you loopy/happy. You can feel everything but it's just not as bad. Like being really drunk! It leaves your body within 30sec-2min of stopping it so has no after birth side effects, and it cannot travel through the placenta. I didn't find it all that helpful once labour really got going but was good for the earlier contractions/waters being broken.

    Can't help you with pethidine.

    And epidural will usually take the pain away but let you feel when you're having contractions/need to push (sometimes will fail or wear off too soon if you're unlucky). You need a catheter and are bedbound. Sometimes it can slow down labour (didn't happen for me). The epidural medication (as well as morphine) can be passed on to baby through the placenta, and in rare cases makes baby more sleepy than usual. After birth it took me about 2hrs to have feeling in my legs. I wasn't allowed out of bed until they removed the catheter when bub was about 12hrs old. An epi doesn't usually cause any side effects but can cause headaches and in very rare cases back pain at the injection site can linger for a long time. You can get an epi if you're induced, they just won't give it until you're in active labour (4cm dilated, regular contractions).

    How hard will it be? Most would say giving birth is hard, moreso if you're induced. Post-partum is much worse than the actual birth but you'll get through it!

    Doesn't matter what you wear, you'll end up naked by the end anyway hahah :D aim for something comfy that you don't mind getting dirty.
     
  8. soffphie

    soffphie Well-Known Member

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    Just want to thank everyone whos posted here so far x any insight is good insight! :)
     
  9. Kitana

    Kitana Moderator

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    I had 2 natural births without anything at all so I can confirm it is awful @chattychar1990 :rofl: but it's only unbearable at the end, when the baby is already almost there.
    I thought the contractions were manageable but the transition phase is the worst. Those contractions are the most painful but it's the shortest phase of it all. If I were to have a third, I would still want it all natural!

    I didn't want an epidural because I had read that they cut your more quickly because you're already numb down there. Plus it increases the chance of complications during labour since you don't know when to start pushing. A friend of mine had an epidural and loved every second of it but they cut her from her vajayjay to her bumhole, it took a while to heal and she was terrified of going to the loo. The baby also got stuck in the pelvic canal since she couldn't push, and they tried to suction him out which also failed but then the forceps did work. Made me rethink an epi lol
     
  10. Rose83

    Rose83 Well-Known Member

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    You’ll have had your baby by now but I just wanted to add for anyone reading this in future that I have had 3 epidurals and all of them would count as failed. With my fourth they are specially going to see me because they can’t understand why they don’t work on me. They basically only take the edge off, I can’t feel most of it and know when to push and can get up out of bed straight away, don’t need a catheter or any extra help. I had a spinal too with my first baby for a forceps delivery and that was the only thing that did actually work.
     
  11. Mandy119

    Mandy119 Well-Known Member

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    Ive had a waterbirth with my son and it was so nice. The water just takes away the pressure and makes it bearable without needing any form of pain relief. So if thats an option for you, it might be worth considering?

    The pain is bearable, I can only recommend looking up some breathing techniques (theres loads of videos on this on YT) and stick with those, it helps soo much. OH kept on thinking I wasnt even close to giving birth and when we arrived at the birthing centre I was 8cm dilated already. Even the midwife said she couldnt believe how calm I was. But thats what the right breathing technique will do for you.
    I always imagined it to be a lot more painful and worse than it was. I was lucky though and had a fairly quick labour.

    That being said I had complications after my son was born and I tried gas/air for the procedure, which I hated. It made me feel sick and made me feel so dizzy.
    I ended up with an epidural, which will take the pain away but you can still feel it when people touch your legs, which is kind of a weird sensation. But theres zero pain.
    For me it only took about half a day before I could carefully walk around again with a little help.
    From what I can remember the only reason you wouldn't be allowed an Epidural is if your too far in your labour already, i think you need to be less than 7cm dilated, but I could be wrong on this.
     
  12. Princess81

    Princess81 Well-Known Member

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    Well....... gas and air is only functional whilst you are breathing it. The minute you stop, it leaves your body and the effects wear off. Some women love it, some women hate it. It doesn’t cross the placenta or affect the baby in any way. It can cause some sickness but apparently if you press on through and stick with it, it’s amazing. Good for use the whole way through labour.

    pethidine you don’t want to have too close for the birth. It’s good if you’re having a long labour and around 4/5/6 cm dilated. You can get it every 4 hours and it is usually given with anti sickness drugs because it can make you really nauseated. It crosses the placenta so affects the baby too, hence not having it close to delivery as some babies born with the effects of pethidine are slow to start breathing and may require low-level resuscitation.

    epidural - if you’re having a midwife-led birth then and epidural will definitely change the dynamic of the room. They are good for long drawn out labours and inductions. You need to be able to sit still enough to have the catheter inserted into your back, and they take about half hour to work once inserted correctly. Baby will need to be monitored continuously, you’ll need to be cannulated with a bag of fluids going (usually), sometimes a urinary catheter will go in too as you won’t be able to feel it when you need a wee (nor walk to the toilet even if you could feel it). Good to take the pain away if you need to rest, but you should still get some sensation from contractions and this is important for pushing. You should be in charge of your own top up button (don’t worry you can’t overdose yourself). Your BP will be closely monitored as epidurals can cause a sudden drop.

    you also have things like TENS machines and water to consider, both are wonderful (can’t be used together). Also pool is a no-go under the effects of pethidine cause you’ll sink and also a no-go with an epidural (I’ve been asked before by someone with an epidural to use the pool :think: )

    So that’s my professional stance. As a labouring mother personally I hypnobirthed which is amazing. Tried gas and air, had 2 puffs, puked and hated it so I didn’t have any pain relief. I found it very manageable, only when in was in transition (getting to 10cm) I thought “oooo this is a bit strong” lol, next contraction I started pushing. I did labour very fast though.

    My advice would be STAY ACTIVE gravity is your BEST FRIEND in labour. We are not meant to birth on our backs. No creature births on their back. Dance, pace, sway, walk, bounce on a ball, float in water! Whatever. Many women labouring on a bed will ask for an epidural, get them up and they change completely and can manage the contractions.

    as for clothes..... some women whip their knickers off just before birth, some are naked completely through the whole labour lol. I wore a nightie - button up is best for skin to skin.

    good luck x
     
  13. Princess81

    Princess81 Well-Known Member

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    You can have an epidural all the way up to 9cm or even fully dilated if needed- only if babes head is visible there’s no point! X
     

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