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#1 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 05:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, this is going to sound really wierd from a woman who has birthed two babies (unmedicated waterbirths). Um, okay here goes. Does not breaking your water during labor acutally slow down the progress of labor, or does it not hinder it at all? It's a silly question, but in both my births I had my water broken. With dd#1 her head was stuck and I needed to get up and march, so my midwives broke my water and gave me some homeopathic medicine to reduce the swelling and I was able to dilate fully. The second time I request it being broken b/c I thought it would speed things up. It did, but it caused very painful contractions and an early urge to push at 7cm. My midwife ended up holding my cervix open while I pushed and I went from 71/2 to 10 in 2 min.; pushed for about 5 and out came the babe.

So, obviously AROM was not a good decision to make, I realize that now. But strange as it was, I really thought I'd be in labor forever if I didn't ask for it. Now that dh and I are thinking about #3, I've been thinking a lot about labor and delivery, since I'm older now and we have really decided to research together and talk about things together before that fact so that we really feel like we are on the same page.

Bethany, crunchy Christian mom to Destiny (11) Deanna (9), and Ethan (2)

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#2 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 06:01 PM
 
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No, not really. Most people will pop their own bags anyway at some point. It can be useful to speed up labor that's stalled, and I do get more nervous when the bag is intact at birth (mostly because you have no forewarning of meconium), but otherwise you will not be in labor forever jsut because your bag isn't popped.

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#3 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 06:04 PM
 
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I'm not sure if this answers your question, but I loved not having my water broken during my first two births. It was like having this nice little cushion while I pushed. My midwife broke my water at my last birth, and it was hellish compared to the other two. And I don't feel like it slowed me down as much as AROM artificially sped me up, if that makes sense.

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#4 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 06:14 PM
 
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You have it turned around. NOT breaking the water doesn't slow labor down. But BREAKING the water is un-natural. It MAY speed things up. It MAY cause a prolapsed cord. It MAY cause all sorts of things. Not breaking water is the norm- allowing it to break on its own.

-Angela
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#5 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 06:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, thanks, see that was what I was thinking, that it gave this nice little cushion. I just noticed that in my last labor, the contractions were painful but tolerable until I had my water broken, when they became so super intense I thought I was going to pass out . I kept going back and thinking it might have been a bit longer but easier if I had left the waters intact.

Bethany, crunchy Christian mom to Destiny (11) Deanna (9), and Ethan (2)

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#6 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 06:18 PM
 
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My daughter came in less than 4 hours with the water breaking just before she "plopped". It certainly didn't slow down anything for me and even if, I'm not so sure if that's a bad thing. Speeding things up is not a good reason for an intervention alone.
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#7 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 09:57 PM
 
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ITA with Alegna.

With my first labor, my water didn't break (spontaneously) until just before I was ready to push, and I think it gave me a nice cushioning. It didn't get really intense until I was ready to push.

With my second labor, I had PROM with no ctx, and when labor finally did get going (after about 8 hours at home doing nothing, I got on the breast pump) it was REALLY intense right away, for the entire time.

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#8 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 10:04 PM
 
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I have nothing to compare it to, but my CNM did break my waters for me. I'd been laboring pretty hard for a few hours with no progress and my blood pressure reads were scary-high, so she wanted to get things going to avoid preeclampsia. After she broke them and i got on the birth ball, I went from 3cm to 8cm in about 2 hours and delivered less than 2 hours after that. I managed the pain OK ~ again, nothing to compare it to, but I don't think my experience was abnormally painful or prolonged at ALL.

Megan. Student Physical Therapist. Married & Mom to Geneva (6/30/06). Recent transplant to the rainy side of the Cascades.
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#9 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 11:01 PM
 
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No doubt, that bag of waters is a cushion. Mine broke around 7 cm. with dd1, 9 cm. with dd2, and half-way through pushing with ds. That last birth was DREAMY! The first time I felt coherent during transition (also my first transition in the tub, so....) Nonetheless, I notice a DISTINCT difference before and after my water breaks. I would keep it right up to pushing every time, if I had the choice!
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#10 of 18 Old 08-22-2006, 11:25 PM
 
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I've had it both ways. Now I will avoid AROM at all costs. A while back I tried to find out if there was ever a good reason for AROM and didn't really find any. In addition to having a much less painful labor/pushing without AROM, I also had peace of mind knowing it was safer for my little guy. Mine waters broke while at the end of pushing but I was thinking how cool it would be to deliver in the caul.
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#11 of 18 Old 08-24-2006, 07:35 AM
 
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My daughter was born with her bag intact. I didn't break my waters, although the midwife asked me if I wanted to several times. My pushing stage was a pretty exausting 2 hours, but once her head crowned her whole body slid out at once, I think due to the sac being slipery. I was born this way also, and my mother told me that this was by far her easiest birth.
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#12 of 18 Old 08-24-2006, 07:40 PM
 
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I've always heard births with an intact bag for as long as possible were much easier (although possibly slower). I'd rather have a longer easy birth than a shorter more painful birth.

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#13 of 18 Old 08-24-2006, 08:48 PM
 
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AROM is just that ARTIFICIAL!

~Carrie
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#14 of 18 Old 08-24-2006, 11:02 PM
 
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AROM is a touchy subject for me. With DS1 I labored beautifully to 8cm, where I stalled for quite a while. My OB and the nurses repeatedly asked if I wanted to break my water to speed things along. Exhausted and vulnerable, I finally agreed. Here's what happened next: AROM>big gush>baby's head is "stuck" in my pelvis>threatened c-sec>epidural>vacuum delivery.

I now believe that my long break at 8cm was just my body and the baby getting aligned for the final passage. By breaking my water before it was time, DS was in a sense flushed down at an awkward angle, which led to all the subsequent interventions.

Now, with DS2, my homebirth, my waters were untouched. Again, I had a nice long labor from 8 to 9 cm. My water finally broke naturally, and Drew was born 23 minutes later, after just a few strong pushes.

So, with both sides under my belt, I'm a FIRM believer in letting your bag of water break naturally when the time is right.
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#15 of 18 Old 08-25-2006, 12:20 AM
 
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It didn't really do a thing to help or hinder my labor. I didn't notice a change in my contractions after AROM. The only thing I noticed was that I was leaking and the friggin OB wouldn't let me get back in the tub where I had been making progress.

Heather Mike Married 8/1/99 Mom to Charlotte Aug 04, Nov 06, and Katherine Oct 07
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#16 of 18 Old 08-25-2006, 12:35 AM
 
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besides the obvious issues that come with messing with a natural process....the baby may be one to be "Born in the Cual" believed to be a special gift. There are many superstitions/beliefs around being "Born in the Caul" here is an interesting link about such.
http://www.crystalinks.com/caulveil.html
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#17 of 18 Old 08-26-2006, 02:22 AM
 
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In my own personal experience (just one unmedicated waterbirth) I found that the contractions were MUCH stronger after the water broke on its own. I definitely wouldn't opt for AROM unless I was stalled and it was that or Pitocin.

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#18 of 18 Old 08-26-2006, 02:47 AM
 
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I just know that I could not WAIT for my water to break during labor with baby #2. It was so uncomfortable I could never have imagined how so until I experianced it. It finally broke as I was starting to push.
Ugh. I seriously hope my water breaks this time a little earlier then it did last time.
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