Every mother has a different and unique pregnancy, labor, and delivery, regardless if this is their first baby or if they have already tried giving birth before. And while it may be different, they have one thing in common, labor discomforts. After all, it’s not called labor without hard work, and part of that hard work is managing pain and discomfort.
With that in mind, this article will outline some helpful ways to help you ease labor discomfort.
- Use Medications
Medication can help you manage labor pains. And there’s no shame in using them as the purpose of it is to make your birth as comfortable as possible. Discuss this with your obstetrician-gynecologist or midwife, so they can inform you of its advantages and risks.
To learn about safe medications for labor and delivery pains, you can check out this article for more information.
- Walk Around
Staying active during your pregnancy is believed to help prepare your body for childbirth. And even during labor, it’s advisable to keep moving, even as simple as walking or swaying. Doing so does not only help ease any pain or discomfort but also can help in progressing your labor. This is because being active and moving around can help encourage your baby’s movement towards the birth canal and promote easier childbirth.
- Change Positions Every Once In A While
When doing your prenatal exercises, perhaps, you might have encountered some light exercises to help prepare your body. And doing these movements can also be of help during labor. As mentioned, moving around can warm up your body in preparation for labor and help distract you.
Here are some movements or light exercises you can try:
- Supported Squat: Gravity plus the wide opening helps your baby’s descent. Your partner holds you under your arms so you can rest in a squat position. This can be done in a birthing tub.
- Slow Dance: Stand on the side of your birthing bed and put your arms on your partner or husband for support. And slowly rock back and forth.
But perhaps, standing for a long period can get you exhausted. As such, you can rest on your bed and still try to do the following:
- Side-Lying With Support: Lie on your left as there would be less uterine weight on major blood vessels. Place a pillow or a peanut ball between your legs to open up the pelvis. This can also be aided with an epidural.
- Hanging Kneel: This can be soothing during contractions and encourages the baby to go down to the birth canal.
- Practice Breathing Exercises
Breathing plays a critical role in helping mothers stay relaxed and focused. When you’re anxious, chances are, you’ll tense up, which can make the labor discomfort worse than it already is. The idea is for you to focus on your breathing, to inhale and exhale to relieve the pain.
Methods such as The Lamaze Method can be of significant help. This involves controlled breathing patterns that distract the expectant mother from the labor pain. Moreover, breathing techniques allow you to push effectively when the cervix becomes fully dilated.
- Opt For A Calming Environment
The environment also plays a part in helping expectant mothers to manage their labor discomfort effectively. It’s essential that they feel safe, at ease, and comfortable. One way to do this is by aromatherapy. Bring a few of your essential oils and put them on the air diffuser.
In addition, depending on the mother’s preference, you can also opt for warm lighting in the room. A soft and comfy bed and pillow can also do wonders in helping them relax.
Massaging is another effective way that can help expectant mothers relax. This is because massages can ease muscle tensions. But aside from the physical relief it brings, it can also encourage mental relief. Massages are known to help reduce stress by promoting the release of happy hormones such as endorphins.
Perhaps your partner can rub or massage the mother’s shoulders, hands, or feet to promote relaxation and ease of labor discomfort.
- Try Water Therapy
During early labor, water can do wonders for you. If space permits and there’s a fixture available, consider getting into a tub to help your body relax. This is commonly referred to as hydrotherapy.
Aside from relaxing the body, immersing your body in water can also provide pain relief. If there’s no pool or tub nearby, showers could work too by letting the water jets massage your back.
- Divert Attention To Other Things
Distractions can be a great way to take things such as pain and discomfort off of the mind. For instance, expectant mothers can distract themselves by watching the Television, or perhaps, playing or listening to their favorite song.
Doing so can divert your attention a bit, allowing you to cope better and ease any discomfort or pain.
- Use Heating Pads
Heating pads are no longer a new concept in providing pain relief, either from muscle tightness or joint stiffness. And more so, it can be applied to labor too. Expectant mothers can put a warm compress on their back or their necks to help them relax. A good tip to note is not to place the heating pad or warm compress on the skin or areas numbed by an epidural to avoid accidental burning.
Expecting a baby and the joy that comes once the baby is born is undeniable. However, there’s a hurdle every mother must accomplish first, labor. While labor and childbirth can be physically challenging, there are a few things you can do to manage pain. And with the insights presented in this article, hopefully, you can ease any labor discomfort that you may feel.