Natural labor vs pitocin induced labor - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 07:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Anyone had both that they can compare for me? I have only been induced and never ever remember having any breaks or pauses between contractions, it was just increasing levels of intensity until I got the epidural, which I really welcomed (and I have a pretty high tolerance for pain). I using hypnobabies for this birth,

 

After that baby turned OP so I had ice pick-in-the-hip feeling. This sounds so stupid but I am either worried I won't know I am in labor because I will be comparing the intensity to the pitocin contractions, or I will be in labor and will need the epidural because I never felt transition with the first baby and it's much worse than before I got the epidural. Does that make sense? I have been told there is no comparison and pitocin is far worse, but the midwives kept telling since I had a baby before, I'll know when to call because I know when the contractions will be bad enough to call, but I feel stupid because I think I won't know when to call.


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#2 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 08:55 AM
 
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I can't compare but I also had pit for my first labor and am hoping that natural contraction don't bowl me over like those pit contractions did. I also opted for an epidural but wonder if I was beginning transition when I caved into it. (Maybe wishful thinking....)

 

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#3 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 09:07 AM
 
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I had labor started with pitocin for my 1st child. It was awful. I don't remember much about it besides rolling around the hospital bed crying.  4 hours into it I was getting the epi. My next two labors were natural and I held out 29 and 42 hours without getting pain relief. I also got pitocin after the birth of my last child because the placenta wasn't coming out and it hurt much worse than I had expected.


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#4 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 09:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by allisonrose View Post

I can't compare but I also had pit for my first labor and am hoping that natural contraction don't bowl me over like those pit contractions did. I also opted for an epidural but wonder if I was beginning transition when I caved into it. (Maybe wishful thinking....)

 

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I don't know myself either. I was put in pit at 10PM, I got the epidural at 11:30 the next morning and they nurses were frantic because he was late....so I don't know if that meant late for me?? OB was busy and I was told I couldn't push until 3pm, but I felt the pushy feeling much much earlier not much after I got the epidural, and by the time I was told to push, I was all numb, except for the hip pain. After 3 hours of pushing, I got a c-section. I have no idea how close I was when I got the epidural. At that point I was off the pit (lovely argument between the nurses and the anesthesiologist who didn't believe her while I was physically stuck in the middle). I don't know if they put me back on it, they turned it off a few times during the night because the nurses said I was responding "too well" (and the OB didn't want to come in the middle of the night to deliver me!)


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#5 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 09:59 AM
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good question!

 

i also had pit with dd and even though it was my first you could just tell that those contactions, in addition to being absolutely painful, were super unnatural. like an out of control train hitting you whenever. 


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#6 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 12:05 PM
 
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Originally Posted by lillymonster View Post

After that baby turned OP so I had ice pick-in-the-hip feeling. This sounds so stupid but I am either worried I won't know I am in labor because I will be comparing the intensity to the pitocin contractions, or I will be in labor and will need the epidural because I never felt transition with the first baby and it's much worse than before I got the epidural.


I can't compare the two because I've never had pit contractions however I can add my experiences with a correctly positioned baby and spontaneous labor. 

  • Early labor (up to about 4 cm) was annoying but not painful unless I was laying wrong.  Strapped into those monitors laying down on a hospital bed put all the pressure up front in my left hip and that was painful.  As soon as I sat up it was just an uncomfortable tightening again.
  • Mid-labor (4-7 cm) had me using a little bit of coping.  Leaning or hunching over, breathing, a few noises.  I was still fiercely adamant about not going (back) to the hospital to get drugs.  (They discharged me when I went up the first time at 3.5 cm.)
  • Transition (8-10 cm) sucked.  I was in the tub when all of a sudden it hit me.  Lots of noises, the crazy breathing from childbirth classes, kneeling over the arm of the couch.  When we got back to the hospital I didn't speak.  Laborland was a half consciousness.  I could hear everything but had no desire to interact.  Being 8 cm when I got back to the hospital I couldn't have anything through my hep lock as it wouldn't have time to wear off before the baby was born.  It was the only time I would have thought about asking for something.  I wasn't as fiercely opposed to getting an epidural but I was too scared of the giant needle to even think about it.  The contractions only rarely got away from me though.  For a while I also squeezed my husband's fingers but I think that mainly was a distraction technique.  At the very end I used lots of chanting to myself.  "I am strong, I am tough" and every time I got through a contraction I'd believe it.  Once my doula did a hip squeeze I found some amazing relief.  I wish I would have asked for it sooner but the second squeeze she did ended with my water breaking and his head quickly sliding down to start the pushing stage.
  • Pushing was kind of fun.  I was up on my hands and knees and contractions didn't hurt anymore.  Maybe they would have if I was on my back but besides the massive effort of getting him out it was shockingly easy compared to how transition had been just a few minutes before.

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#7 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 12:44 PM
 
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Haven't had both, but I did have pit the whole time with my first.  I almost had an epidural when the nurse asked if I wanted one.  I know now I was likely moving into transition and I said yet... but by the time they woke up the midwife and checked me she said I was close to pushing and that was all I needed to hear.  I also experienced that pushing was way better then transition!


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#8 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 02:27 PM
 
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i had pit with my 1st, i remember it being, like you said, contraction after contraction with no breaks. i too opted for the epi. with my 2nd i went to  a birthing center and an epi wasnt an option. i had timeable contractions for at least a week before the progressing contractions started. they weren't making me dialate for that week so my mw thought we should try to stop them. that didnt work. and she said if laying down, or walking around dont make them ago away then it's probably the "real deal". we had one false alarm, went to the birthing center (an hour away) and it tappered off. a few days later at 3:30am contractions started...nothing helped so i called my mw and she wasnt convinced it was real again...but i went in anyway and on the way i had to call her because they kicked it up a notch and she had to help me breathe through them over the phone. when i got there i was 5cm, dd was born that day :) the beginning contractions were bearable, i just knew they were the beginning of labor and once they started getting stronger and stronger...just no way they weren't. the contractions near the end were just like the pit ones, and all i could think was how i wanted to run away to get away from them...i can say that with the pit/epi as soon as i got the epi i slept for an hour then woke up ready to push (dialated like 8cm during that hour of rest).


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#9 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 02:31 PM
 
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Everyone says pit-induced contractions are worse but I've had both and I found no difference (other than "natural" labor ramps up more gradually and it was definitely more pleasant to labor at home than in the hospital). In both cases it began to feel overwhelmingly painful (and I asked for pain relief) at the exact same time - 10 cm.


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#10 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 03:35 PM
 
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I had pit with my first, but it was combined with magnesium for pre-eclampsia, so I don't think the contractions were as awful as they could have been if it had been pit alone.  I had to really concentrate on my contractions early on and I was bed-bound because of the mag, but I never thought that I needed the epi.  Being terrified of the idea of a needle in my spine probably helped force me to cope.  Having my very supportive DH and sister with me really helped too.  When I had DD spontaneously two years later, I think I went to the hospital sooner than necessary because I was afraid that labor would get much more difficult to cope with earlier like with the pit and I didn't want to be stuck in traffic.  I totally could have stayed home longer, but at least it was a nice quiet Saturday evening to walk the hospital halls smile.gif

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#11 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 03:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am wondering if there is a difference in amount too? I have my medical records and they increased pit every 30 minutes, and then kept turning it off, so I wonder if I had a lower amount if it were to be more manageable.


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#12 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 05:28 PM
 
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I haven't had an induced labor, but I want to reassure you about knowing when to call your MWs -- for my first labor I was really worried about calling too early/too late.  My MW had some really good advice: that when I started to get snappish with my Dh, it would be time to call her to come over.  Sure enough, each time I start wanting to tell my Dh to shut up and leave me alone, it's time to call! 

 

And transition... definitely not something I look forward to: it is intense.  But it also helps to know that you are in transition, that it will be over relatively soon, and that you often get a rest before the pushing phase starts.  I don't know, that sounds like a lot of very coherent thoughts for labor, but during each of mine, I realized I was in transition and went through that thought process (ie, this is the worst part and it'll be over soon) and that helped me get through.  It's great to read other mama's experiences of transition, because there is a wide variety (some throw up, some shake all over, feel like they can no longer cope, etc).

 

 

 


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#13 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 05:30 PM
 
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I had a pit "augmentation"  with my first and that seemed to make my contractions more painful I think. I ended up getting an epidural at like 6 cm. I know I could have done fine without it but back then I didn't care too much about natural birth and was actually annoyed that they waiting so long to get me my epi...

 

My second was all natural. I far preferred it. I'm actually looking forward to my next one's birth because of that experience. I feel much more confident. 

 

EDIT:

I had lots of pre-labor contractions for about 2 weeks before my second kiddo. But, when I finally was in labor I knew it. I think you will know. 

It hurt worse pushing my first one out than my second one because the epidural didn't work properly and I was on my back with the first and with the second I mostly pushed on my hands and knees. Pushing went a TON faster with my second than with my first as well. Around 45 mins with the first and around 15 mins or less with the second.


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#14 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 06:09 PM
 
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I also had pit "augmentation" with my 1st (water broke, no contractions, they were freaking out, I didn't know any different) and they kept turning it up as the contractions took a while to start. They would not let me move around at all, and the contractions were coming on top of one another so I ended up getting the epidural...I think I was at a 4? or so? I will say I was then able to sleep and I relaxed a bit which i think helped me dilate more quickly.

 

With my second I went to a birth center so it was natural. It was a TOTALLY different experience-contractions were totally manageable-gradually increasing in intensity rather than hitting me like a bus. There were a few times I was like 'WHY did I not want an epi again??" LOL but they passed quickly and when I was complete I clearly remember thinking "That wasn't too bad!!" I used hypnobabies for relaxation which I think REALLY helped a lot. I really didn't notice transition, although in retrospect there was a time period that I got very cold in the tub and felt a little queasy when I sipped my juice, so that was probably it. I definitely felt "somethings different" when I was fully dilated.

 

I also was nervous that i wouldn't know when I was REALLY in labor, but I did. I had been having some cramping in the evening for several days, and the day I went into labor, I had cramping in the morning, which I remember thinking was kind of weird int eh back of my head, and then the cramping became regular at every 10 minutes LOL and soon began to intensify a bit and come every 5 minutes.

 

The natural labor was a MILLION times easier to deal with-the natural contractions, plus being more prepared and knowing what was happening. The only thing for me was that pushing was NOT better-it hurt like an SOB, but it was only 17 minutes long so.....you can do anything for 17 minutes. :) And it probably didn't help that because she came down so fast, she dislocated my tailbone, which I DEFINITELY felt. But I'll be going natural again this time around, unless something weird happens.


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#15 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 06:13 PM
 
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My first was induced with pit and it was very difficult.  I would have an intense contraction and then instead of getting a break, my body would produce it's own smaller contraction.  I felt so cheated.  I remember our Bradley instructor talking about being able to rest between contractions.

 

My second son was born at home and the birth was a billion times easier.  The contractions never felt like I couldn't handle them.  Even when I was in transition, contractions were nowhere near as painful as with the pitocin.  After my second son was born, I kept thinking, "That was it?"  Pitocin was not kind to my body and I would do an awful lot to avoid having an induction.

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#16 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 06:23 PM
 
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My first was induced with pit and it was very difficult.  I would have an intense contraction and then instead of getting a break, my body would produce it's own smaller contraction.  I felt so cheated.  I remember our Bradley instructor talking about being able to rest between contractions.

 


This sounds like me.  My water broke with no contractions after 24 hours.  So they started pit.  The contractions had NO break.  They would peak to screaming pain and then subside to a pulsating, cramping, moaning on the floor crying pain.  I had spasms in my rectum too that were HELL ON EARTH!  I got the epidural because there was no way I was going to be able to enjoy the birth when I couldn't even open my eyes.  I think because my water had broken they just don't care about increasing pit slowly - they go as fast as they can and it is just completely unnatural.


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#17 of 25 Old 12-28-2010, 06:56 PM
 
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My first labor I had pitocin. I was having prodromal labor and was told I was in labor, but that it had "stalled" when in fact I was just not yet in active labor.

 

I was told pitocin causes contractions just like normal labor (in my case, this was a complete lie, NONE of my subsequent non-pitocin labors have ever been as painful as  that, not even during transition).

 

I got an epidural a  few hours in, it was misery. Intense contractions with no real break in between to get relief.

 

I too was worried during my second pregnancy that I would not be able to cope with labor. After all, the nurses had told me pit contractions were just like regular labor... and a nurse wouldn't outright LIE to me about that, would they?

 

Well, with my second baby I again had prodromal "stop-and-start" labor for a couple weeks before active labor began. When active labor started, I knew this was it because when I tried lying down on my left side as per the doctor's instructions, OW OW OW do not want. Sitting up, I was  fine. Walking around, I was fine. Contractions were mild, and in between I could talk, joke, etc.

 

We got to the hospital when I was about 5 CM. So, I figured I had several more hours to  go. Well, as soon as they admitted me and put me in the LDR room, I hit transition. 5-10cm in 30 minutes. It was super intense, and I just could. not. do. it. anymore. I was sure I had hours and hours left to go, I asked for something to help with the pain. My fears had come true, I couldn't handle labor. It was too much for me.

 

Well thankfully my nurse was a smart lady and decided to check me. As soon as she said I was complete, the "I can't do it" feeling went away. I realized I HAD done it! The pushing urge hit a minute later, and DD was out within a few minutes after that.

 

That labor was an eye-opener for me. It was fast and intense, but it was NOTHING like pit labor. None of my subsequent labors have had any pitocin involved, and I have never felt any urge to ask for drugs either. When labor starts to get overwhelming for me, it always means it's almost over.

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#18 of 25 Old 12-29-2010, 12:37 AM
 
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pitocin does in fact cause contractions to be more intense, in that they are longer, stronger and closer together, the majority of women would say that it causes labour to be harder to cope with and it does cause an increase in edpidural rates. You will know when to call :) There comes a point for most women where they can no longer talk or do anything during contractions, that generally signifies active labour and when you should usually ring your provider to let them know :)


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#19 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 11:06 AM
 
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I will pluck my eyes out with an ice pick before I EVER let someone give me pitocin again! I've done both and pitocin is hell. Labor is work - but manageable. I am a tough lady but I couldn't handle the pit. demon.gif


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#20 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 11:52 AM
 
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Once they started the pit, my contractions went from, painful and manageable to hell on earth, wanting to jump out a window. The nurse told me it was just a coincidence. Yeah whatever lady!

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#21 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 12:21 PM
 
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My 2nd was induced and my 3rd was an unmedicated homebirth. They were both pretty much the same. The first 10 hours were fine. My contractions got progressively stronger but they weren't painful and labor wasn't difficult. It wasn't until the last two hours when I got to transition that it got extremely painful. I ended up getting and epidural at the hospital. I assumed it was so painful because of the pitocin and thought my homebirth would be easier. It wasn't. I was in just as much pain during transition. The only difference was that pain medication was not available.


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#22 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 03:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lillymonster View Post

I am wondering if there is a difference in amount too? I have my medical records and they increased pit every 30 minutes, and then kept turning it off, so I wonder if I had a lower amount if it were to be more manageable.



Maybe, I was told I was going to be given "just a whiff" of pit because I had broken water, and no labor. Every 30m they came in and turned me up too, and I could feel the next contraction was much stronger. It was so fake and forced. And you had to have the stupid monitors. I hated it. I was told I could come off it eventually, but "I was doing so well, they didn't want to risk stalling labor by taking me off" blah.

 

if I had it to do over, I would tell them to back off and see if labor starts on it's own.

 

I am also curious, if anything, I may wait too long with this one for fear of intervention. Chances are I will be screaming "no!! 5 more mins then we can go!!" while DH stuffs me in the car lol

 

I did manage until the end without drugs, so it can be done :) Iike other mamas said, I felt like I was doing ok (but very tired, I hadnt eaten all day :() until I was about 10cm and declared I had to push or I was going to pass out from exhaustion. Pushing wasn't too bad, it was the only thing that my body felt like it knew what it was doing!


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#23 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 04:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lillymonster View Post

I am wondering if there is a difference in amount too? I have my medical records and they increased pit every 30 minutes, and then kept turning it off, so I wonder if I had a lower amount if it were to be more manageable.



That's a good question. Since I was having a VBAC there was a limit to how much they could give me. I don't know what the actual dose was but I do know they never turned it up. They wanted to insert and internal monitor so they could increase it but I wouldn't let them. Like I said, with that I labored just fine for about 10 hours. It was only the last 2 hours that were painful, almost exactly the same as at home.


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#24 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 04:34 PM
 
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I had a pit birth with DD1.  Water broke in the morning, by 3pm, no labor, so they cranked up the pit to 10... within 30 minutes I was doubled over, not breathing except for the 30 second breaks between contractions.  It was INTENSE.  I got the epi at around 9pm and started pushing almost immediately, no real pain relief from the epi.  DD1 was born at 10:29pm.

 

DD2, home birth... water broke at 2:30pm, contractions were noticeable at around 4... intense at 5:30 and I hit transition at around 6:45 pm... DD2 born at  7:29pm.  the last 45 minutes were intense, but it compared to the 6 hours without the epidural with DD1s birth.  I was still talking between contractions up to the point of transition (maybe 15 minutes total).  I would say that my labor and delivery for both girls was easy, but my unmediated home birth was wonderful!  


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#25 of 25 Old 12-30-2010, 08:40 PM
 
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I had pit, but wasn't induced, and then I had a NCB for my second. The second was by far easier and way less painful.


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