Monday, July 13, 2009

Pain In Childbirth

The pain of childbirth may have benefits on which women who opt for painkilling epidurals miss out, a senior male midwife has said.

Dr Denis Walsh, associate professor in midwifery at Nottingham University, said pain was a "rite of passage" which often helped regulate childbirth.

He said it helped strengthen a mother's bond with her baby, and prepared her for the responsibility of motherhood.

But an obstetrician said epidurals were an important option for some women.

Dr Walsh, who wrote on the subject in the journal Evidence Based Midwifery, agreed that in some cases epidurals were very useful.

But he said epidural rates had been rising over the last 20 years, despite the fact that alternative, less invasive ways to manage pain in labour were available.
He said pain in labour was known to have positive physiological effects, such as helping to establish a rhythm to childbirth.

It also triggered the release of endorphins which helped women to adjust to pain.

Dr Walsh said epidurals were known to increase the risk that hormone treatment would be needed to boost contractions, and that devices such as forceps would be needed to complete the birth successfully.

He said: "I am concerned that if we increase epidural rates we do not know the long-term impacts of that."

But he warned that a culture had emerged where most hospitals effectively offered women epidurals on demand.
Official figures show the number of mothers receiving an epidural rose from 17% in 1989 to 1990 to 33% in 2007 to 2008.

Dr Walsh said the NHS should encourage alternative ways to deal with pain such as yoga, hypnosis, massage and birthing pools.

24 comments:

Jaye @ canadian-mom.ca said...

I planned an unmedicated birth but required intervention during the pushing phase (my son's heartbeat was dropping and not recovering during contractions.)
I'm a huge believer in hypnobirthing - worked for me :)

Carmen said...

Very useful information, thanks for sharing.

luckson said...

i really like this blog...its great support for pregnant women..

marina kamen said...

Epidural was a great thing for me...I have had 3 children now ages 16,18 &23.

birth control said...

There are a number of side effects associated with epidurals. It effects both the mother and the baby. It increases the baby's heart rate, permanent nerve damage, convulsions, heart and breathing difficulties and many other problems. So pregnant women should take this into consideration before opting for epidurals.

netpharmaworld said...

informative post ..
interesting to read...
thanks for sharing..

nitrile gloves said...

The pain is definitely very helpful for the mother and the child.Healthy and psychologically also good.

BCBSNC said...

Its really nice blog which can help the woman to stress out from the pain during her pregnancy.

Anonymous said...

Goodness, another man who will never have to experience the pain of childbirth making unorigional comments yet again. Sorry but it is every womans right to have pain relief during pregnancy and epidurals absoloutely DO NOT prevent or weaken the bonding proces with the baby, however for all of those who cope with labour without pain relif, good for you but please don't make everyone else feel like a failure.

johnabraham said...

Very useful information, thanks for sharing.

Maternity Wear said...

I think it is completely up to the mother and the labour SHE is going through. I have never had an epidural but both my child births were very quick. It is interesting and I do believe the pain makes the experience all the more amazing!

Globalhospitals said...

I'm also a huge believer in hypnobirthing - I hope it works for me :)

selman said...

i was following Pregnancy Implantation but i'll follow that blog anymore..good job!

ezek said...

good info..i like this.

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Treatment said...

Your information is a great support for any pregnant women. Thanks from my heart for sharing this tips and tricks.I love this blog.

Unknown said...

I had a homebirth without medication. It was wonderful. The mind is a very powerful tool.

http://predictingbabygender.info

Dr Shreya Deshpande said...

Good info.. thanks!

lavi said...

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