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The Pain Principle


To Medicate or Not? Preparing for Labor & Delivery.

Sure, you’ve got this. But every now and then you wonder, maybe even worry, about the pain of labor and delivery. Being prepared is one of the best strategies for dealing with pain when the time comes



The Pain Principle
To Medicate or Not? Preparing for Labor & Delivery 

Sure, you’ve got this. But every now and then you wonder, maybe even worry, about the pain of labor and delivery. Being prepared is one of the best strategies for dealing with pain when the time comes.

in the home stretch now, and stretch will be the operative word here.
During the next phase your stomach will stretch beyond your
imagination, as your baby makes its final growth spurt. At this point,
you’re probably enrolled in or about to start a childbirth class, which
may have your mind lingering on the eternal question of all pregnant
women: “Exactly how much will it hurt to get this person out of me? I
mean, is it stump your toe pain or Brazilian bikini wax pain?” I was
petrified of how much pain would be required to bring this baby into
the world and many days I wished to stay pregnant forever. Yes, I was
that scared.

of the most important things I’ve learned in this pregnancy business is
that preparation is everything. Labor and delivery don’t have to be
frightening. Knowing you have the strength to bring your child in the
world is the best comfort you can have. Don’t bring fear into your
childbirth experience.
the idea scenario. The other is to consider a little help from the
friendly pain management team at the hospital. They’ve got stuff to
make sure the experience is as painless as possible. Now, I’m a pain
punk to the core. I like my epidural shaken not stirred and always on
tap. When I talk about my fondness for drugs during childbirth, some
women always start talking about how it’s not natural and how our
foremothers squatted in fields, gave birth and went back to work hours
later…”Sure, back in the day they just pulled teeth out of your head
and operated on you while you were awake, but we don’t do that anymore.
And there’s a good reason why we don’t, says Denise from Manassus,
Preparing for Pain
To reduce pain during labor, here are some things you can start doing before or during your pregnancy:
and reasonable exercise (unless your health care provider recommends
against it) can help strengthen your muscles and prepare your body for
the stress of labor. Exercise can also increase your endurance, which
will come in handy if you have a long labor. The important thing to
remember with any exercise is not to overdo it — and this is especially
true if you’re pregnant. Talk to your health care provider about what
he or she considers to be a safe regimen, given your prepregnancy
fitness level and the history of your pregnancy.
If you and your
partner attend childbirth classes, you’ll learn different techniques
for handling pain, from visualization to stretches designed to
strengthen the muscles that support your uterus. The two most common
childbirth philosophies in the United States are the Lamaze technique
and the Bradley method.
couldn’t agree more. I’m all about having an empowering birth
experience but just know that taking charge of managing your pain is
very empowering. There are no parades, extra balloons or ticker tape
celebrations for having a baby without any pain medication. I like my
deliveries the way God intended—heavily medicated from the waist down. 
But have your experience. Define it, then do it.
Other ways to handle pain during labor include:
  • hypnosis
  • yoga
  • meditation
  • walking
  • massage or counterpressure
  • changing position
  • taking a bath or shower
  • distracting yourself by counting or performing an activity that keeps your mind otherwise occupied



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