1. Unmedicated/Comfort Measures
The book “HypnoBirthing: The Mongan Method” by Marie F. Mongan, presents a method that can be learned to go into a deep state of relaxation, calm your mind, to have a less painful and more satisfying birth experience. Classes are taught by certified HypnoBirthing educators over a four to five week period to give you the tools needed to practice, prepare and use the HypnoBirthing Method in labor.
3. Nitrous Oxide (aka laughing gas)
Narcotic medications such as stadol, morphine, demerol or nubain can be administered through a one time shot, or through your IV. These provide relief for a number of hours. Narcotics do not numb you but can take the edge off and help reduce anxiety. They should not interfere with your ability to push. Possible side effects include nausea, dizziness, vomiting, itching and sedation. These medicines cross over the placenta and may affect your baby causing drowsiness or other side effects.
4. Epidural anesthesia
An epidural provides pain relief and decreases sensation in the lower half of your body. This is the most popular form of pain relief used today. An epidural can allow you to rest if your labor is long, prevent exhaustion and help you to be more comfortable. An epidural can help you to remain awake and participate in the birth of your baby if you need a cesarean. Side effects may include: slowing labor down, difficulty with pushing, blood pressure drop, headaches, backache, soreness at insertion site and nausea. This medicine also crosses over the placenta and could possibly have effects on your baby: lethargy, struggle with latching, etc. Always speak with your care provider to ensure any options you choose are safe for you and your baby.