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thinking of an epidural for baby #7 - Page 2

post #21 of 49
I agree that it's worthwhile to go in knowing that pain relief during labor isn't always perfect, but it isn't always failed either, and if planning to try it makes you feel better it's your choice, it's a legitimate choice, and to be honest I wouldn't personally even ask for opinions in places where feelings on the subject tend to run high. Birth, and physical and emotional capacities for mananging pain, are such intensely personal matters that no level of other people saying "I would," "I wouldn't," "this happened to me," or "I heard that" can really reflect on you and what's right for you at all.
post #22 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by hempmama View Post
And I know a lot of women who have given birth with an epidural, and not one IRL who has had an epidural headache or related backache. My hospital has an excellent anesthesia department, so maybe their statistics are just lower, but these complications, though they certainly happen, are rare. To the point that in hundreds of women who have shared their birth story with me, not one has had them.
I'm not arguing about how common epi backaches are, because I honestly don't know. However, I do know that my sister had a hellish backache for weeks after her first was born, and chose not to have the epi next time for that reason. I was her major post-partum support person, so I saw it. However, when she tells her birth story, she stops when she left the hospital, except for mentioning how much it sucked having to go back to see him, because he couldn't come home (he was slightly preemie, and they kept him in NICU for 5 days after she was discharged). I've never heard her mention the backache when telling about his birth, but she still had it.

That said, I'm not going to tell anyone what pain relief they should or shouldn't ask for. I find feeling only pressure when there should be pain beyond creepy and terrifying and will probably never understand why someone would want that...but I have a major problem dealing with numbness, and consider it, in general, to be a far, far worse sensation than pain. For me, getting an epi for labour pain would be trading bad (and yeah - I've had some pretty serious labour pain) for nightmarish. Obviously, for others - maybe most - it's the other way around.
post #23 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by catsandcats View Post
I think you should be able to do whatever you want, as well. It's your decision. As long as you are empowered by your choice, go for it.

I'm a little surprised, though, that no one is talking about the baby here. Does the baby get a choice to be born without drugs? Please don't interpret this to mean that I think you are being selfish--not at all! But, I just think about that sometimes, because the birth should be as gentle as possible for the baby. Babies have a consciousness and an awareness that we are only starting to realize. Besides that are the physical effects that we are only just starting to realize (troubles w/ breathing, breastfeeding, and the possibility of future addictions). Might be total speculation, I know, but worth thinking about.

I do understand the desire to have a different experience--otherwise, you will always wonder, "What if I had had the epidural??"

Poor ds1. He's probably screwed for life.
post #24 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by gabysmom617 View Post
Poor ds1. He's probably screwed for life.
So are my 2nd & 3rd...except I only had the epi for an hour with number 3...she still may have a chance.
post #25 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by catsandcats View Post
Besides that are the physical effects that we are only just starting to realize (troubles w/ breathing, breastfeeding, and the possibility of future addictions). Might be total speculation, I know, but worth thinking about.
Addictions to what? I have read a ton about epidurals and their possible side effects and have NEVER read anything that mentioned the mother having an epidural put the child more at risk for addictions.
post #26 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by TCMoulton View Post
Addictions to what? I have read a ton about epidurals and their possible side effects and have NEVER read anything that mentioned the mother having an epidural put the child more at risk for addictions.
There is evidence of a correlation between mother's drug use in labor and increased likelihood of drug addiction later in the child's adult life. Much of it has been found with narcotic use during labor (and, subsequently, opiate/narcotic use in adulthood), and although it makes more sense with IV narcotics, epidural drugs have the potential to do the same thing--we just don't know (it hasn't been studied as closely). I didn't say it was for certain. It's a possibility.

A snippet from http://www.midwiferytoday.com/articl...gsinlabour.asp :

"In a well-designed case control study at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm in 1990, researchers compared children exposed to pain-relieving drugs in labour with those who were not exposed and discovered an increased risk of drug addiction later in life (Jacobson et al., 1990). In 1988 they showed that when nitrous oxide was given to the mother the child was five and one-half times more likely to become an amphetamine addict than a brother or sister born to the same parents. In their paper in the British Medical Journal(1990), patients who had died from opiate addiction were compared with brothers and sisters..."

The imprinting is referring to the proliferation of opiate receptors that predispose the individual to the craving for opiate drugs.
post #27 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by catsandcats View Post
There is evidence of a correlation between mother's drug use in labor and increased likelihood of drug addiction later in the child's adult life ...
So ... select studies demonstrating a potential correlation unrelated to epidurals leads to speculation regarding causation related to epidurals?
post #28 of 49
http://www.jstor.org/pss/3703829
http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/abstract/317/7169/1346

The information has been around for thirty years.

The Bertil Jacobson study also cites a relationship between forceps deliveries and mechanical means of suicide, because of the imprinting that takes place at birth.
post #29 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by youngnhappymamma View Post
I just found out we are expecting our seventh child and I am already thinking of an epidural! I have never had one...all births have been natural (well, my first I had a shot of morphene) and our last birth (just 10 months ago) was a wonderful homebirth. I LOVED the homebirth. My husband LOVED the homebirth. I HATE the pain of labor....thus considering going to a hospital and having an epidural.....what are your opinions? Anyone made a similar choice (had natural births then had an epidural)? Were you happy about your choice after wards? I really am not excited about the prospect of a hospital birth (especially in this city) but I REALLY like the idea of not being in so much pain.....
That's why I like Hypnobabies. I'm not a fan of pain (epidural with #1 worked great), but I didn't like the hospital overall. My last four babies were all born at home using hypnosis.
post #30 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Veritaserum View Post
That's why I like Hypnobabies. I'm not a fan of pain (epidural with #1 worked great), but I didn't like the hospital overall. My last four babies were all born at home using hypnosis.
I'll chime in & say that hypnosis for childbirth ROCKS!!! Some women would never give birth without an epidural; I would never give birth without hypnosis!

You can find used courses for cheap or check out brands of hypnosis. The key with it working really seems to be if you practice it EVERY day from about 20-30 weeks on. Easy enough to do for a painless labor, I'd say! I loved the practicing & the labors!
post #31 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquesce View Post
So ... select studies demonstrating a potential correlation unrelated to epidurals leads to speculation regarding causation related to epidurals?
Same drugs, different delivery (IV vs. epidural catheter). I am not implying causation. There is a reason to believe there is a correlation. What's wrong with speculation? If it hasn't been proven false, there is still that possibility. Possibility, not guarantee.

Select studies that demonstrate correlations are used to direct medical care all the time. This is how the standards of care are decided.

I am pro-choice in regards to birth. If a woman truly needs an epidural, I don't believe in denying it. I am not trying to induce guilt. Each and every person has a right to know the risks and benefits of everything before deciding.
post #32 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by youngnhappymamma View Post
I just found out we are expecting our seventh child and I am already thinking of an epidural! I have never had one...all births have been natural (well, my first I had a shot of morphene) and our last birth (just 10 months ago) was a wonderful homebirth. I LOVED the homebirth. My husband LOVED the homebirth. I HATE the pain of labor....thus considering going to a hospital and having an epidural.....what are your opinions? Anyone made a similar choice (had natural births then had an epidural)? Were you happy about your choice after wards? I really am not excited about the prospect of a hospital birth (especially in this city) but I REALLY like the idea of not being in so much pain.....
I didn't read the replies...but i can probably guess what the majority - if not ALL of them say.

I only have 2 kids - my first was totally natural. Yep - labor pain SUCKS.

I got an epidural with my second (I doubt i would've had the choice on this though, there were some complications and they had to use pitocin...anyway...). Epidurals are AWESOME. I would get it...you already suffered through 6 labors naturally, why not get a little relief with number 7?

My birth was pain free - once I got the epidural. And getting it didn't hurt that bad. The only thing that hurt was the contractions prior to getting the epi and having the tape removed. Getting the tape removed from my back actually hurt worse than birth.

I was still able to move around in the bed as well...i actually got on all fours to see the the baby would turn (the cord was around his neck and i was minutes away from a c-section). I did need a bit of help...but it really wasn't so bad. It wore off pretty quickly too.

Okay...now i'll sit back and wait to be banned or flamed for my pro epi post
post #33 of 49
I had an epi with my oldest. While I did get great pain relief, it didn't help at all when the baby was pressed on a nerve. So, they gave me more pain med. Still didn't help. At this point I have NO control of my lower body, ended up with a 4th degree episiotomy and a forceps delivery. I am lucky to not have had a c-section. But, that's not the end of it. I blacked out when I tried to stand to go to the bathroom and it took forever for the drug to completely wear off. Recovery was LONG. I didn't understand how these other women could bounce back so quickly after birth. Sex hurt for about 9 months (because of the episiotomy--which I know was a result of the epi).

Baby #2 was natural hospital birth with midwife. They thought because of my scar tissue that I would tear. I only had a very small tear, didn't stitch it. Baby #3 was born at home. .. 9 pounds 10 ounces and big. Small difficulty with shoulder dystocia, midwife reached in around head to dislodge the shoulder. NO tearing at all. I credit this feat to the birthing tub I labored in.

You mentioned that you had a homebirth for your most recent addition. Have you ever had the chance to use a birthing tub. For me, it really helped. But, this is YOUR choice. You know yourself best. I just want you to hear my story so that you know that the epidural isn't all it is cracked up to be.

Amy
post #34 of 49
Honestly, I thought about it with #4. #3 was such a stressful difficult birth (at home) and I was worried about repeating it. I didn't think about it for very long though, I just couldn't put my baby (or myself) through a hospital birth unless it was absolutely necessary. I ended up with the most perfect homebirth I could imagine, nearly pain free and less than an hour from "oh I'm actually in labor" to baby.
post #35 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by catsandcats View Post
Same drugs, different delivery (IV vs. epidural catheter). I am not implying causation. There is a reason to believe there is a correlation. What's wrong with speculation? If it hasn't been proven false, there is still that possibility. Possibility, not guarantee.

Select studies that demonstrate correlations are used to direct medical care all the time. This is how the standards of care are decided.

I am pro-choice in regards to birth. If a woman truly needs an epidural, I don't believe in denying it. I am not trying to induce guilt. Each and every person has a right to know the risks and benefits of everything before deciding.
A degree of reason to believe there may be a correlation by one means of delivery utterly unrelated to another, particularly when that other means so heavily alters the degree of infant exposure, can not be used to indicate the presence of an, itself unstudied, equivalent potential correlation -- that's what's wrong with speculation, plain and simple. It can't be done. As for not having been proven false ... it has also not been absolutely proven false that epidurals will increase the risk of babies born to mother who use them later sprouting unicorn horns, but there would clearly be something wrong with speculating that they might. It being unstudied does not make the possibility a legitimate matter to bring up in epidural decision making conversations. I would also add that such speculation is heavily and needlessly alarmist, particularly given the sheer volume of people who fail to fully understand the difference between a correlation and a causation.
post #36 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquesce View Post
As for not having been proven false ... it has also not been absolutely proven false that epidurals will increase the risk of babies born to mother who use them later sprouting unicorn horns, but there would clearly be something wrong with speculating that they might.
Okay, I am SO too lazy right now to get into agreeing or disagreeing so I am not going to comment except to at this.
post #37 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquesce View Post
As for not having been proven false ... it has also not been absolutely proven false that epidurals will increase the risk of babies born to mother who use them later sprouting unicorn horns,
:
Yup. Well said. Just because it hasn't been "proven false" doesn't make it a legitimate concern. As a matter of fact, it's really hard to "prove" a negative anyway.
post #38 of 49
I think it's like everything with interventions--we must consider the risks and benefits to each and apply those to our own personal situation.

I've read the research in the past and would suggest the OP does as well. Then do the risk benefit analysis for her situation.

I've had a few friends who have basically gone to the point of exhaustion and transferred and received an epidural. For them the choice was either epidural or cesarean (that's how it was presented to them at the hospital as they were exhausted--often at labor for a very long time the mw would fight to get them that chance at an epidural rather than an automatic section for 'failure to progress').

From what I have read, it's unlikely that I personally would choose an epidural to ease my own 'pain' during labor. However, if there was a case where physically there was a reason why I needed to have one and at that point the benefits outweight the risks then I would do it. Of course, I've had like four kids now, including the last birth (which was precipitous). So may be a moot point because though as I may be done, I don't know!

I do have a couple of friends who have had them for all births, including my SIL. And, most definitely they don't always work. Some of them had to have them redone during labor as well.
post #39 of 49
Haven't read all the PPs, but have you ever looked into hypnosis for childbirth? It's amazing! I originally came across it when an article mentioned that hypnosis is used in place of anesthesia (when someone is allergic, for example) for surgery, and recently read about it being used for dental procedures/having teeth pulled (http://hypnobabies.wordpress.com/200...eth-and-birth/). That was pretty convincing for me! I did Hypnobirthing for my first birth and Hypnobabies for this one. Good luck in your decision!
post #40 of 49
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the responses! Hearing from so many women whom I know share a lot of the same philosophies about childbirth and child rearing as I do is awesome!

I love the idea of going to the hospital, getting an epidural and then just hanging out, having fun with no pain until it's time to push the baby out. I know that actually does happen for some people like that...and I know that there are a LOT of risks and interventions involved...one of which is not enough pain relief, etc.

I have thought of hypnobirth or hypnobabies before (any recomendations about which one is better?) but I have such a hard time making my body relax....I don't feel like I could actually accomplish that.....but it doesn't hurt to start training and trying, I guess!

It is very hard to imagine being happy in a hospital setting where I was a "patient" and my baby was a "patient"....that would be very irritating and frustrating. I will have to do a bit more research about the hospitals here and care providers here and see how bad it would be.

Ugh. I really hate decisions like this!! I love getting the cute baby at the end.....I just wish they could teleport out!
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