or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Pregnancy and Birth › Birth and Beyond › "Premature" urge to push? Update post 46
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

"Premature" urge to push? Update post 46 - Page 2

post #21 of 49
I had an urge to push with my dd at 8 cm. I wish I'd known at the time I wasn't the only get that urge. I so wanted to push a little but the nurse checked me, told me I was 8 cm, not to push and that it could be HOURS yet before it was time. Hearing that totally broke me down. I'd gone through hours already of hellish pitocin-augmented labor and thought I was doing just great. Then she told me that and I just gave up and asked for the epidural. If only I'd had a more natural-birth-friendly hospital staff.

Reading this thread is somewhat healing. It never made sense to me that my body would want to do something that was so wrong. It's nice to hear others had the same experience.
post #22 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by sanguine_speed View Post
I think it is reasonable and not presumptuous to say that based on the evidence, our bodies birth without intervention the great majority of the time. While it's unfortunate that some women experience true anomalies, that's what they are--anecdotal anomalies. This goes for all sorts of other birth issues too, not just cervical dilation. There are always exceptions. But they don't justify intervention in every case because overall the interventions themselves are more likely to cause more harm than good.
Was that a response to my post? I'm very confused, if so, because I of course agree that the majority of labors do not technically need intervention. What I said was that categorical, 100% never-always statements just can't really be made when there are so many variables. (Such as, a mother will *never* push so much it tears her cervix.) Believe me, with all of the mind-blowing pain my freak labor was causing me, tearing my cervix would barely have been a blip on my radar.

And ahhhh how humble that birth has made me.
post #23 of 49
Well, since the "urge to push" is an involuntary reflex, triggered by pressure points on the cervix and/or the vaginal walls, I think it is definitely possible that a poorly positioned baby could cause that pressure at a time in labor that is not optimal.

The urge to push isn't some kind of consciousness of the body sensing that it needs to rotate the baby or do something extra. The baby lands in a certain position on a certain nerve and there's your urge. Ideally, it occurs at the righ time when mom's body is ready to move from dilating to expelling, but if it doesn't, it doesnt' mean that it is *good* that it was triggered, and it *could* mean that a woman is faced with an uncontrollable urge to push that could cause problems if she goes with it.

Think of it like coughing. Coughing is a reflex. Sometimes its a good thing - we're triggered to cough up things we've inhaled so they don't go into our lungs. But sometimes something like constant post-nasal drip can trigger that reflex and cause us to cough and cough until we hurt ourselves. Coughing is value-neutral, and most of the time we cough appropriately, but we can have a reflex kick in at inopportune times that are not ideal,too.
post #24 of 49
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by savithny View Post
Ideally, it occurs at the righ time when mom's body is ready to move from dilating to expelling, but if it doesn't, it doesnt' mean that it is *good* that it was triggered, and it *could* mean that a woman is faced with an uncontrollable urge to push that could cause problems if she goes with it.
Well, I guess the question here is, will it really cause problems? We've all heard or been told that pushing before 10 cm will tear or swell the cervix. But is that evidence based? Is it true? It seems like the women on this thread who gently pushed as their body instructed had better outcomes than those who resisted the urge to push.
I do totally get that pushing is value-neutral. But what's being posited is that some women, especially those with babies in less than optimal positions, may get the urge to push before 10 cm as an evolutionary tactic to shift malpositioned babies. Our bodies have tons of tricks like that which evolved over millions of years. I think it's plausible.
post #25 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by *MamaJen* View Post
But what's being posited is that some women, especially those with babies in less than optimal positions, may get the urge to push before 10 cm as an evolutionary tactic to shift malpositioned babies. Our bodies have tons of tricks like that which evolved over millions of years. I think it's plausible.
Not in my friend's labors (see my earlier post)...truly, she was pushing at a really, really BAD time (only half dilated). Her cervix was getting so swollen that her homebirth-loving doctor TOLD her she should strongly consider an epidural, or things might progress badly and quickly. I can't express how strange it was to hear that particular doctor suggest an epidural would be a good idea!

And, despite all her premature pushing, in both labors, both of her daughters were born sunny-side-up. Her body's urge to push did not reposition either of them...not even a little.

It makes sense to me that, with posterior babies, the pressure on the cervix would cause (as a pp suggested) a premature, and incorrect, urge to push. I can see how pushing at 8 or 9 centimeters might not be so bad...but 4? 5? Something is wrong there.
post #26 of 49
There's grunty pushing at peaks of contractions and there is PPPUUUUUUUUUSHING. I get grunty and growly and pushy with my voice catching etc.... around 6-7 cm. This lasts for about 15-45 minutes and then there is "the baby is coooommming!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" in earnest full on pushing that lasts a couple contractions before baby is out. I've been this way since baby #3, as long as I am unmedicated.
I have never been told to stop, I have never torn my cervix nor had my cervix start to swell. It tends to freak out the L&D nurses a bit but my midwife and OB who are experienced with grand multips say it is very normal and just fine.
post #27 of 49
I've read quite a few birth stories here about swollen cervix, but none about torn cervix.


It's probably an individual thing. Sometimes it's okay to push, and sometimes it's not the right time.
post #28 of 49
I get an early uncontrollable strong pushing with my births. Swelled the cervix and other tissues a bit and I had to hold back as best as I could and have my MW apply arnica. Everything went fine though, the swelling went down and baby popped right out.
post #29 of 49
I attended one woman who had a premature urge to push at 4cm. She couldn't not do it, even with grunty, mom-led pushing only at the peak, she swelled considerably.

Baby was in a stubborn low-transverse arrest, mom had an ample pelvis, and it took all of her concentration not to all out push that early.

Babe ended up moving at about 9cm into a better position and descended rapidly after that point.
post #30 of 49
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wonderfullymade View Post
I attended one woman who had a premature urge to push at 4cm. She couldn't not do it, even with grunty, mom-led pushing only at the peak, she swelled considerably.

Baby was in a stubborn low-transverse arrest, mom had an ample pelvis, and it took all of her concentration not to all out push that early.

Babe ended up moving at about 9cm into a better position and descended rapidly after that point.
I wonder, in that situation, what would have happened if she had not resisted the pushing urge and continued to bear down? Would she have swollen to the point of not being able to push the baby out, or would it have been fine?
That's what I'm saying. I can't find any actual evidence based studies looking at what happens in a normal birth setting when the woman can push as along with her body's urge. It's like it's conventional wisdom that you can't push unless you're 10 cm, and I'm hearing stories from birth professionals saying "it was really hard for her not to push, good thing we were there telling her to not do it." But what if they woman just pushed as she pleased? Obviously it's all anecdotal on this thread, but it seems like the women who pushed when they felt pushy had better outcomes than the women who refrained.
We ask OBs to challenge the conventional non-evidence based standards like continuous fetal monitoring, epesiotemies, lithotomy position and the like. Is this in the same vein? Is preventing women from pushing when they get the urge to push actually an intervention that in many cases hurts more than it helps, but we continue to do it out of habit?
I'm not a medical professional and I don't know the answer to that question, but I would love to see real, evidence based information on the topic.
post #31 of 49
I don't think that if I premature-pushed it would be like life-threatening. But I'm betting a swollen cervix would make labor much harder and longer, and wouldn't be fun.
post #32 of 49
Quote:
I don't think that if I premature-pushed it would be like life-threatening. But I'm betting a swollen cervix would make labor much harder and longer, and wouldn't be fun.
Yes, it does. I had one, not from premature pushing, but because my daughter's head was cocked sideways and could not come out even when I was dilated.

I don't think the OP is asking whether or not a swollen cervix is a problem, she is questioning the assumption all women should/must wait until 10 or else they automatically risk a swollen or torn cervix. That is what women are being told, that their bodies are broken, that if they feel pushy before 10 (or on the other hand don't feel pushy at 10) then that means something is wrong and they need to stop listening to their bodies and just do what they are told. Where is the scientific evidence that all women can not push until 10/must push at 10 and not wait? That is what we are asking.
post #33 of 49
Thread Starter 
That's a good flip point -- a lot of women get a break after hitting 10 cm and don't feel pushy right away. My midwife called it the "rest and be thankful stage."
post #34 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by fruitfulmomma View Post
Yes, it does. I had one, not from premature pushing, but because my daughter's head was cocked sideways and could not come out even when I was dilated.

I don't think the OP is asking whether or not a swollen cervix is a problem, she is questioning the assumption all women should/must wait until 10 or else they automatically risk a swollen or torn cervix. That is what women are being told, that their bodies are broken, that if they feel pushy before 10 (or on the other hand don't feel pushy at 10) then that means something is wrong and they need to stop listening to their bodies and just do what they are told. Where is the scientific evidence that all women can not push until 10/must push at 10 and not wait? That is what we are asking.
I see what you're saying. And yep, I'd agree that not ALL women shouldn't push before 10 cm, and not ALL women should push before 10 cm, and definitely I don't think anyone HAS to push just because they are at 10 cm.

Probably a lot of "you're at 10 cm so you have to push now" attitude comes from the frequency of epidural. Because if you are numb you really DO need to be told when to push. But I think if there is no numbness, you shouldn't HAVE to push at 10 cm if your body isn't ready for it, as long as you and the baby are doing fine and there is no rush to get the baby out.

Although lord knows I HAD to push at 10 cm, there wasn't even any free will about it, my body was doing it like it or not, haha.
post #35 of 49
With ds2, the unbearable urge to push came early. Actually, that whole period was the extent of my labor. I had 10 contractions that I can recall. I start labor pretty late in the game. I had been a stretchy 4-5 cm and 80% effaced for a week. After walking and spending time rocking and swaying my hips on the loo with some BH type contractions I got to 6 cm. I was getting frustrated that labor was not starting. I felt great. Fine. Just very impatient. It's typical for me to hang out at 6-7 cm with no labor. My midwife was very puzzled by it. But it was normal for me.

Well, contractions picked up while I was on the phone with my mom. I recall having about 5 contractions during our conversation. They weren't painful at all, but they were definitely not like the BH type I had been having for a couple weeks. These felt real and were coming about every 2 minutes. I had a feeling things were starting up. Then I started leaking blood and waddled back into the living room to tell/show my midwife. I was still feeling fine. I actually don't recall any contractions at this point. They had me lie on the bed to get checked. Babe was just fine, but my cervix was puffy and swollen, which was where the bleeding came from. I was relaying all of this back to my mom on the phone.

Then they had me roll onto my left side to take pressure off my cervix. I was still 6 cm. It seemed like within a minute I felt a contraction (last contraction I recall was before walking into the living room). It was pretty intense. Next one came about 10-15 seconds later and I felt pressure. Told midwife I was feeling pressure. She said not to push yet as my cervix wasn't ready. 3 contractions later, less than a minute, he was born. I was in such shock. A few minutes before I was talking on the phone with my mom telling her labor would get going soon (30 or so minutes in my mind). My legs were still closed when his head was born. He barreled through and shot out like a rocket.

She and her intern were completely stunned. My husband looked like a deer caught in headlights. I didn't know what to think other than "What the hell just happened?!

Yeah, from the time 'labor' started to birth was 15 minutes. Went from 6 cm and -2 station to birth in about a minute. Similar case with dd2, but labor was 47 minutes. I read up on maternal-fetal ejection reflex. That's exactly what I experienced my babies.

My midwife with ds2 said my pelvic floor and cervix just melted away and out he came. It was extremely forceful.

With dd1, I started feeling pushy at 8 cm and it was intense. I was told not to push because I wasn't ready. Well, I wasn't sure how I could just not push. It was so intense. The nurses said getting an epidural might take the edge off the pressure. I ended up getting it even though I really didn't want it. I think I was 9 cm when the anesthesiologist finally came in to administer it. About 15 minutes after he was done I was complete.
post #36 of 49
Thread Starter 
Here's another really interesting article about pushing that mentions "premature" pushing urges: http://www.midwiferytoday.com/articles/pushing.asp
"It has become the paranoia of North American midwifery that someone will push on an undilated cervix. Relax, this is not a big deal."
post #37 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by fruitfulmomma View Post
That is what women are being told, that their bodies are broken, that if they feel pushy before 10 (or on the other hand don't feel pushy at 10) then that means something is wrong and they need to stop listening to their bodies and just do what they are told. Where is the scientific evidence that all women can not push until 10/must push at 10 and not wait? That is what we are asking.
I'm not saying that *everyone* *must* wait, by far. Women are not machines and labor is not a checklist, obviously. Every body is different.

But the assumption that if our body is telling us to do something it *must* be correct and beneficial is a dangerous one and is frankly wrong. Our bodies have a lot of reflexes and responses that are at best value-neutral and at worst *can* be damaging, and to say that ignoring the demands of our bodies is somehow always a bad idea is potentially dangerous.

I might have an overwhelming urge to scratch at a chigger bite. Does this mean it is beneficial to scratch? Does this mean if I scratch that bite until becomes a big open wound, that is what my body needs or wants? No. The urge to scratch comes from a reaction of my nervous system, but has no higher-order meaning or message about my body's destiny or the best way to accomplish a goal. It just *is,
post #38 of 49
I didn't have the urge to push for my first two, because of the epidurals I received. With my third, a homebirth, I wasn't sure what to expect, and at some point I was just really tired and wanted to get the show on the road and asked the midwife if I could start pushing. She said, sure, why not? I believe I was probably 9 cm, but I don't exactly recall. Long story short, my cervix *DID* swell, and it prolonged the labor. In the end, the midwife had to manually hold back my cervix - - can we say painful??? I'm sorry I didn't wait until feeling an urge, and will definitely not try to do that this time!
post #39 of 49
If the MWs/Obs aren't checking you then they don't know whether you are early pushing or not and surely that means the early pushing is something they all made up? Because if you don't check then how do you know if its early pushing or not???? Anyone see my point? That maybe there is in fact no such thing as early pushing, somebody just decided that pushing before a certain dilation is early when in fact it might just be normal.
post #40 of 49
I had the urge to push way before the baby was anywhere near to coming out...and it felt good. It actually helped with the pain. I don't think it would have been the same kind of pushing as if one pushes a baby out though - but it was pushing.
All very interesting!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Birth and Beyond
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Pregnancy and Birth › Birth and Beyond › "Premature" urge to push? Update post 46