Diarrhea during labor? - Mothering Forums
Birth and Beyond > Diarrhea during labor?
Megan_in_Holland's Avatar Megan_in_Holland 04:38 PM 04-25-2008
Sorry if this is all TMI with regard to my bowel habits , but I've been thinking a lot about my miscarriage this past January, and wondering if it will in any way prepare me for "real" labor...

For me, the worst part about the m/c itself was not the pain (which was horrendous enough, believe me!) but the fact that I had really horrible diarrhea throughout the whole ordeal. The diarrhea was so distressing to me that it completely took over the whole experience and prevented me from being able to calm down and let things happen. I felt like I'd lost all control over my body, and spent the whole time frantically running back and forth to the bathroom and crying, unable to control my bowels. I can't even describe how horrible, painful and upsetting that was.

We've just started TTC again so I'm not even pregnant yet, but I'm secretly really terrified of going through that again during labor. I just couldn't handle it. I should say that I always have problems with diarrhea when I'm stressed, excited, or find myself in new situations, so there's a large chance it could happen again. Has anyone else had trouble with diarrhea during labor? What did you do?

Would it be safe to just take some Immodium beforehand? What about an enema-- or would that cause more problems? I know I just shouldn't stress about it, but I'm feeling kind of nervous about getting back on the TTC bandwagon as it is, and I guess I just kind of need some reassurance.

~*~MamaJava~*~'s Avatar ~*~MamaJava~*~ 11:04 PM 04-25-2008
first of all for your hard experience, and i am sorry for your loss.

second, that isn't something I've heard of before - often your bowels will do a little self-clean prior to labor starting. that eliminates the poop worries. now, if you are prone to diarrhea...i suppose a little imodium wouldn't hurt! if it works for you, do it, and don't worry about it.
KariM's Avatar KariM 11:22 PM 04-25-2008
I don't have true diarrhea during labor, but do get looser and more frequent stools until I'm fairly well cleared out.

I've read that it helps make more space for the babe.

I also am prone to vomiting during transition.

Both are pretty manageable for me, but that might not be the case for all mamas.
patchynurse's Avatar patchynurse 03:41 AM 04-28-2008
I had the runs during labor. It's common. It's how castor oil helps start labor if the cervix is ripe. I am sorry you had a bad experience. As far as something to prevent it, anything safe in pregnancy should be safe while you labor. But if you take Imodium, you may have more trouble with pooping after, which can be painful already.
applejuice's Avatar applejuice 04:28 AM 04-28-2008
Hospitals used to give enemas at admission to the maternity ward. This was a useless ritual. The hormones that initiate labor actually stimulate everything in that part of the body to get ready for the birth, and loose stools is one way.

I used to have diahreah with my periods also. I do think it is hormonal.

Do not worry about it. Many women have that. You are normal.
Megan_in_Holland's Avatar Megan_in_Holland 08:43 AM 04-28-2008
Wow, it's nice to know that what I experienced is "normal"... It's still unpleasant, but it does help me relax a little knowing I'm not the only one with diarrhea issues.
New_Natural_Mom's Avatar New_Natural_Mom 10:46 AM 04-28-2008
My big fear was pooping during labor and having DH see. Well it happened and wasn't the end of the world. I was too busy pushing to care and to be honest - didn't even notice I did it. We girls are tough, that's why we get to have them babies.

BTW - we got pregnant with acupuncture. Very non-invasive and effective.
Kate'smommy's Avatar Kate'smommy 11:16 AM 04-28-2008
When I was younger, I had the same problem sometimes when stressed or excited or having pms -- my system emptied out, sometimes painfully wth diarrhea. It also happened at the start of active labor with my first birth. By the time I left for the hospital, I was emptied and not having the problem anymore. I think it actually is beneficial, as unpleasant as it is. It was actually more manageable than the diarrhea problems I have had in the past because I accepted what my body was doing as something normal and useful.
meganmarie's Avatar meganmarie 05:30 PM 04-28-2008
I am also sorry for your loss and the painful experience.

Comparing my m/c and my 2 labors, I can tell you the m/c was definitely the worse experience. I was shaking, sick, had diarrhea and was expelling blood clots at the same time. For an entire night I was crouched on the bathroom floor by myself. Absolutely the ninth circle of hell.

Labor was much more manageable and relatively pleasant, ramping up gradually in intensity. In transition, like a pp, I did have some vomiting. It was actually a nice signal that we were about to get very very serious, and in fact within one hour of throwing up I was fully dilated and ready to push. I don't recall any diarrhea or BMs during the labor.

Every labor is different but I think a m/c isn't necessarily just like labor - there is actually something wrong with your body, while giving birth your body is really all right.
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