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#1 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 06:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I remember shaking really bad after the birth of all of my children. I know it had more to do with drops in certain hormones and the shock of birth rather than actually being THAT cold, but with those previous births being in a hospital, I'm wondering if natural birthing in a more friendly environment and no epidurals, though my first was no epidural either, if I will experience shaking like that again? I remember asking for warmed blankets, and still I would shake. But like I said...it didn't seem to be from just being cold. Should I prepare for the shakes again? I know the midwife can pop a blanket or two into her dryer and get me all swaddled up, but whenever I see natural birth pictures I see nothing but naked moms. They certainly don't look like they are about to shake themselves right off the bed. Is there anything else I can do to help with shaking? It felt so uncontrollable, very weird.
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#2 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 06:39 PM
 
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I don't remember feeling cold after the birth, but I do remember my legs shaking badly.

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#3 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 06:57 PM
 
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I shook, but I think it was the epi. I shook really bad w/ AJ, bad epi w/ large amounts of drugs and then a c/s. After Evan, not during this time, better epi, and only had it maybe an hour. Hopefully next time I'll be w/out and will see if it's different.

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#4 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 07:03 PM
 
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I was shaking so hard they had to take the baby. They were concerned I was going into shock. They were worried about the baby being in shock (it was a brutal delivery and she was injured quite badly. She crashed into my pelvis pretty hard. do not make any sudden moves after you water breaks. No one tells you this.) my hormones and whatnot were all over the map. Labor was all of 5 minutes so she was out by the time all the hormnoes hit (like a train). Plus there was the trauma of a dark blue, floppy completely unresponsive baby. (we were in my midwifes office by the way so there wasn't so much as a bulb syringe) it was also a while before the shaking started. maybe 20 minutes. I also didn't remember anything between about 5 minutes atfer the birth until after the shaking stopped (until much later). It was definitely more than cold. It is something I did not experiance with either of my other two children. It had never happened before but it comes on quite easily now whenever something traumatic happens. I get very very cold (it could be 90 in the house and I would still eb freezing, like the cold comes from the inside and not the outside, I am sure it is a drop/rise in adreniline or blodod pressure or soemthing) and start shaking uncontrolably. warm things help sometimes. Don't know how to control it though.

#1 was a preemie born in the hospital. very stressful, painful and i was far from healthy. very traumatic.
#2 was born at home, had a wad of very tacky mucus blocking her airway that we couldn't get out. our midwfife was a no show. very traumatic.
#3 was with a qualified confident midwife in her office, quite unplanned but good none the less, midwife was very calm and in control through the whole thing. probably the least traumatic of all my births but by far the most unexpected. She was out when I realized this was really labor. I think that was what pushed me over the line. I didn't have any time to mentally prepare for labor or what would happen in labor. didn't have time to process things one contraction at a time.

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#5 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 08:04 PM
 
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I shook really bad after my dd was born, worse than after my ds. I was afraid to hold her without my dh helping me. I think it lasted around 30 mins, but admittedly I had very little concept of time. My ds was a hospital birth, with a failed epidural and plenty of other interventions. My dd was a NCB at a birth center. I can promise you that for me it had nothing to do with being cold. I was actually burning up.
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#6 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 08:38 PM
 
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I do remember feeling cold and shakey with my first. That was a hospital epidural birth. I didn't have any of those feelings after my second was born, which was also in a hospital, but a natural, medication free labor and delivery.

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#7 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 09:47 PM
 
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2 unmedicated births. I shook like crazy for 15-30 minutes each time. The nurses said it was normal. I felt fine otherwise, exhilarated, in fact! I was just shaking. So weird!
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#8 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 09:51 PM
 
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I had the same thing after a miscarriage.
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#9 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 10:40 PM
 
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At the very least, at home you could have the heat turned up and a big pile of blankets ready and waiting.
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#10 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 10:41 PM
 
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At the very least, at home you could have the heat turned up and a big pile of blankets ready and waiting.

Out of curiosity, are these shakes anything like "just used that muscle a lot shakes"?
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#11 of 28 Old 01-16-2006, 10:46 PM
 
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I had a natural, very hands off birth with dd in a hospital and got the shakes for about 15-20 minutes. It wasn't a muscle shake but whole body, completely involuntary, due to hormones.

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#12 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 12:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Mine didn't seem to be from muscle use either. I shook like I was freezing cold, but I wasn't actually cold. Well, maybe a little, after all, my little internal heat source was suddenly removed, but I wasn't THAT cold. If I focused really, really hard I could make it stop for a moment, but then my body would just take over and I'd be shaking again. Like others have said, I'm thinking it must be a combination of several things...heat loss, blood/fluid loss, shock, maybe drugs if that was in the mix, although I have to say I think I shook worse with my first birth that I only had a shot of Nubain early on than with the next two epidural births, but I could also be remembering that in a more extreme light because it was such a tough labor. Maybe that has something to do with it too.

I'll make sure my midwife knows I have a tendancy to shake afterwards and have them put some blankets in the dryer in time for delivery.
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#13 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 12:22 AM
 
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I had this problem after my 3rd, I thought it was due to it being such a more difficult delovery than the other 2, but I dont know. It was al over shakes and I was just beat as it was. The heat was cranked up and everything. They were all hospital but natural deliveries, but i didnt have a IV with the third, so I thought maybe a combo of the hormones and being slightly dehydrated, maybe lowered blood sugar too as the labor was long. Those were my thought on it and once my body was done having baby it all caught up and freaked out.
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#14 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 12:38 AM
 
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I have heard that it is due to the body reacting to the epidural wearing off.

At home, it can be due to the adrenal reaction to all of the blood circulating throughout the mother's body after the birth of the placenta, and that avenue for blood being closed off....the adrenals react to keep the mother from going into shock, as I recall from my childbirth classes.

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#15 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 01:21 AM
 
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I remember shaking after the birth of my third. It was a very fast birth. I feel the shaking is due to the body coming off a high. Its a let down IMO to go from being in labor and pushing to nothing.

I drank some juice, covered up with a comfy blanket and was fine.

All 3 of my births have been at home.
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#16 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 03:40 AM
 
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I had the shakes pretty bad after both of my births (first was epi/pitocin delivery, second was c-sec). I figured it was the meds trying to work their way out of my body. I do notice though that if I use a muscle too much that isn't used to it, it will shake with exhaustion. Like the first time I ever played tennis. My wrist shook for a week. Wierd.

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#17 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 05:01 AM
 
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From what I know of the hormones of birth there is usually an adrenaline rush right after the birth or around the time of crowning.
Theories on why:
Get's the mother alert so she is aware of dangers in her surroundings and so she's awake for that first hour that baby is also awake
Signales the uterus to start clamping down and closing the cervix, basically that labor is over
Gives the baby an adrenaline rush so the heart beats rapidly during the transition to the outside world

Whatever the cause the sudden release of adrenaline will, in most people, cause trembling of some kind. I also think that the legs being in stirrups adds to the effect. If the legs are in a stable position the shaking feels less uncontrolled. Of course any medications during labor can cause shaking as well.
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#18 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 10:18 AM
 
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I shook a LOT after ds' birth (waterbirth @ home- no drugs obviously)... but my labor was only 4 hours total and I went from 9cm to baby and placenta out in 34 minutes without pushing so it was quite intense at the end. I remember my legs shaking with adrenaline and saying over and over "I can't believe he's here! I can't believe he's here!".

It was awhile before I was ready to lie down in bed, my birth experience was so heady. I got a scolding for that!
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#19 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 11:02 AM
 
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I shook a lot after each of my 3 unmedicated births. I did feel cold; and I really think that, besides/ in addition to the drop in hormones, having a little warm body suddenly leave mine could cause a pretty dramatic drop in body temperature.
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#20 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 12:15 PM
 
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I shook a lot after the my dd's birth at home in the water. I was pretty exhausted after pushing for 4 hours though. I remember thinking how strange it was that I couldn't get my teeth to stop chattering. After a little while it stopped but then later that night I woke up shaking again (probably about 6 hours later).
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#21 of 28 Old 01-17-2006, 03:34 PM
 
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I was fully prepared to be shaking after the birth of my dd. I was planning on it and even asked my dh to make sure there were plenty of blankets around.

I was suprised that I didn't shake. So I guess it doesn't always happen.

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#22 of 28 Old 01-20-2006, 10:51 AM
 
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I don't recall shaking after my first birth, but this time around my legs were shaking so bad that I apologized to the mw while she was stitching me up (both unmedicated births.) She said not to worry about it at all because she was used to it -- that it was the adrenaline pumping through me. That was about 2am -- I couldn't sleep for hours and hours afterward because I was so pumped up -- I do believe she was right -- adrenaline! (and I kept shaking for about an hour after that)
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#23 of 28 Old 01-20-2006, 11:15 AM
 
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I shook after both kids Both were hospital, unmedicated/natural births.

It was really just my legs though...my upper body shook a little, but not bad.

I wasn't prepared for it with my first, but my doc told me it was normal - adrenaline and all - which is how I felt - completely energized! With my second, I was prepared for it, but it was much more intense. I think in part because it was such a quick labor (which I was not prepared for) and near the end, the nurse was saying that she didn't think I could do it on my own, and the doc was starting to talk forceps/vacuum/possible c/s because the baby was "so" big.....at that point, I just dug deep and pushed her out - so for her I do think that it was part adrenaline, part muscle fatigue. My legs and arms really felt like jelly afterward.
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#24 of 28 Old 01-20-2006, 11:24 AM
 
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I had two unmedicated births, one longish (27hrs), the other much shorter in a birth center (9 hrs). I shook like crazy after both. Yeah, it's not the room temp. i am also a birth doula and most women shake. Whta really helps is to have someone gently hold/steady your legs- not to restrain you or pin you down, but gently hold them- takes it down at least a few notches and helps it not be so distracting when you trying to gush over that new love in your arms.
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#25 of 28 Old 01-20-2006, 11:24 AM
 
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Wow, what amazing experiences! my first birth -hospital- I remember shaking during labor- but was so doped up after the birth on Percocet that I don't recall shaking.
Now- my 2nd birth -UC-, After the baby was born, I was chilly, and once in bed with my baby I shook like crazy! I mean, freak out shaking. I was not cold- I was sweating profusely and actually panicking. This was during the "uterus shrink-down time" I took nothing at all for any discomfort. I swore I was giving birth again and really really freaking out.
After some research, I believe I was on the verge of shock. I lost a lot of blood I think and was TOTALLY not prepared for this 2nd wave of contractions.
This shock lasted 24 hrs, but then crept up on me 5 days later- putting me into the ER for major headaches and trembling (whole other thread)
I know now to be overprepared for the after birth event. Tons of fluids- sugars, protein, herbs, homeopathic remedies, whatever to get me though the potential "freak-out" phase. Though I doubt I'd freak out this time.

Mama to 5 babies. UCer, too!
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#26 of 28 Old 01-20-2006, 11:39 AM
 
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I shook badly after DD was born, but I had a c-section so who knows what caused it. My doc told me that it was pretty typical, and that I should just let it happen, and that fighting it or trying not to shake would only make it worse. That seemed to be true.

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#27 of 28 Old 01-20-2006, 01:53 PM
 
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I think the reasons for the shaking are not generally well understood. No doubt it can indicate problems, but I think it can be normal as well, and as other people have mentioned, not necessarily meaning that the mother needs to be warmer, as seems to be a popular notion. Even two of my favorite birth writers/researchers, Sarah Buckley and Michel Odent, say this. I am skeptical though -- for thousands upon thousands of years, humans were not able to instantly adjust the heat after birth, so it makes no sense to me that a biologically evolved function of the body would require that.

Anyway. My last birth was unassisted and was attended by my husband for the last hour. It was just about as unhindered a birth as I can imagine, and was quite wonderful. As I began to cool off after the birth, I was wrapped in a robe and towels and had blankets around me. The bathroom was cool (which was perfect when I was in labor) but I was comfortable. I then transferred to the warmer living room, and again was wrapped in blankets and felt comfortable. It was then that I started shaking. (Unfortunately I don't remember if it was before or after the placenta came out.) I shook strongly for a while, but to me it felt good. I got the impression that my body was taking care of something and that it was a good thing.
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#28 of 28 Old 01-21-2006, 03:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AMB8301
I had a natural, very hands off birth with dd in a hospital and got the shakes for about 15-20 minutes. It wasn't a muscle shake but whole body, completely involuntary, due to hormones.
Same here with my first. I had my second at home and I still shook, but not as badly. I was expecting it too. The first time I had no idea that that happened.
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