Managing Pain During Labor without Medication


(uplifting music) – Hello, my name is Tammy Ferney. I’m a Registered Nurse
and Clinical Educator at Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center. Today, I’m gonna talk to
you about natural ways of relieving pain during
the labor process. Changing positions in labor is essential to provide comfort,
relaxation and relief of pain. It alters the relationship
between the baby and the pelvis and actually increases the effectiveness of your
uterine contractions. There’s no one magical
position for everyone. You, your support person and your nurse will find the positions that
are best for you and your baby. (uplifting music) Walking during the early stages of labor is especially helpful. It allows gravity to work,
keeps the mother upright and allows the fetal head to come down into position in the pelvis. For moms who need continuous
fetal heart monitoring, we can use a wireless
system so that we can put the cables into a
wireless box and the nurses can see the fetal heart
rate at their stations. The support person or the
nurse walking with the mom can also listen to the
fetal heart rate as we move, so we can continue ambulation and walking. (uplifting music) The next position we’re
going to talk about is side lying in the birthing bed. This position is useful
in both the early stages and the more active stages of labor, especially when mother needs
to resume a position of rest. Get yourself comfortable
using lots of pillows and it doesn’t matter
which side you’re on. We can also use a pillow between the knees to help open up the pelvis
and give you comfort. Remember that relaxation
techniques are also very important. Another tool we can use
in the side lying position is what we call the peanut pillow. This is used in a little
bit later stages of birthing to help the mother’s pelvis
get ready for the birth of that baby and the
descent through the pelvis. While in this side lying position, it’s also a great tool to
have the support person or nurse use gentle massage
on the back and the hips. This can be done by using
the palm of the hand to give that massage. You can also take a spot on the lower back and put counter pressure
during the contraction. This helps relieve back
pain when the infant’s position is again in the posterior. Another method of giving counter pressure is using the fist. Taking the fist, mom will help direct you, and giving counter
pressure on that lower back helping to relieve the pressure from the back of that baby’s head. As you progress into labor
into the later stages, you may need more rest and support. We can still do that
by sitting the bed up, keeping your knees in
a comfortable position and supporting the head and neck. Another very useful position is to use the hands and knees position. This is where you will
get on the birthing bed, we lower the foot of the bed and you lean on a smaller birthing ball. This allows you to rock your pelvis, back and forth once again, helping to rotate the infant’s head. (uplifting music) Standing at the bedside is
a great method of keeping mother upright and using
gravity as your friend. Mom can put her hands on her
support person’s shoulder and we do what we call the slow dance. Rock back and forth, stay relaxed. Support person can also use back massage putting counter pressure and
also hip pressure and massage. You can use massage
oils or massage lotions. (uplifting music) The birthing ball’s
another very useful tool during the labor process. As you can see, again
it keeps mother upright, and we use gravity as our friend. The most important thing
is to keep you safe while on the birthing ball. Make sure you have a
support person standing near you at all times and
also that the birthing ball is the right size for your height. We like to use the birthing
balls to help rock your pelvis and this helps the baby’s
head rotate into position. We can accomplish that
by going side to side or front to back. You see what feels best for you. It’s also a very nice position to get comfortable and relaxed. You can use a pillow
at the side of the bed. Your support person or nurse can also use massage oils and lotions
to massage the lower back. Also, putting counter
pressure on the lower back and massaging the hips. (uplifting music) This is a great time
to use other relaxation and comfort resources. You can use your favorite music. Bring music that helps you
to be calm and relaxed. You can use heat pads,
either on your back, your neck, wherever it feels good for you. You can also use aroma therapy and we can do that by having aroma balls, cotton balls soaked with
your favorite essential oil. The only thing we ask is
that you do not burn candles. You can also use guided
imagery, where you think of your most favorite
pleasant event or experience. All of these things help keep you relaxed and help the progress of your labor. (uplifting music)

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