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Date of last update: 10/14/2017.

Forum Name: Obstetrics

Question: Alternatives to epidural?

 Mo Mo37 - Thu Jun 12, 2008 6:01 pm

Hi, I am 5 1/2 months pregnant. Just wondering if anybody could give some thought to some alternatives to getting an epidural. I hate pain. But I don't want to put the baby at major risk with the epidural, and I would hate to be paralized from it. What are some different options? I've heard of a few different drugs- But I don't fully know the deatails.

Any input would be helpful.
 Debbie Miller, RN - Wed Jul 09, 2008 6:35 pm

User avatar Hello,
Any drug used in your delivery has the potential for problems to either you or the baby. The epidural is actually one of the safest forms of anesthesia for childbirth. If you want to be completely safe from drug complications, consider an unmedicated birth. Prepared childbirth can be very effective and rewarding but the key is "prepared." You won't be successful if you just tell yourself you are going to do it. But, if you take classes in a method such as Lamaze, Bradley or hypnobirthing, and practice faithfully, you can control your pain by understanding the process and working with your body to push the baby out - to allow nature to do its work. You could benefit from a certified nurse midwife who is proficient in this type of delivery. Choosing your health care provider is vital here. A doctor who does not support this will not be a good choice. It is work with your mind and the mind is capable of much more than we realize. At least get hold of some books and read up on the subject. There is also an interesting video called The Business of Being Born, created by Ricki Lake which shows what is possible. She did a home birth and I am not advocating that - but the points it makes about getting back to the basics of giving birth naturally are quite remarkable. In a hospital you have safety backups for problems, but most births are uncomplicated and the hospital environment itself can contribute to the problems. Being educated on this and preparing yourself can allow you to be assertive to get the birth you want.

Good luck.

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