Dental work reaffirms my choice to go natural. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 01-30-2010, 03:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, I had some dental work done. I had similar work a few months ago in another part of my mouth, before I got pregnant, and they used Septocaine, which is injected and contains the anesthetic and epinephrine (which apparently makes it work longer).

It made me batty. Sure, I couldn't feel anything, but for hours afterward, I tingled, itched, couldn't chew--even the other side of my mouth felt weird. I went to a meeting at work a few hours later, slurring my words.

Well, today, I went in for Part II (which had been rescheduled to get me past the wanting-to-gag-every-30-seconds part of pregnancy). This time, they asked if I would feel more comfortable with just numbing gel--my doctor had said Septocaine would be fine; it's Category C but worth the risk because untreated dental problems can increase pregnancy complications. Topical benzocaine is also Category C, but you use less of it and less of it ends up absorbed, and there's no epinephrine.

Regardless, I went for the topical stuff because the injected stuff made me crazy.

You know what? It hurt a little bit more, but nothing was unbearable.
By the time I finished paying my bill, it had worn off completely, and everything is fine now. A tiny bit of ache in my jaw from keeping my mouth open for nearly an hour, and my gum is bruised, but nothing too bad, and that would have happened no matter what kind of anesthetic I used.

Generally speaking, drugs and I are not friends. I got a Vicodin script when I had my wisdom teeth out--I took one, felt like I was going to die from the nausea and overall weirdness, and didn't take any more and just dealt with the pain with ice and maybe Tylenol.

I suspect, if I get an epidural, I will be one of those people who ends up with it only taking on one side, followed a two-day spinal headache.

Yes, there may be some medical indications for medication, and I'll deal with it...but if it's a choice between "it will hurt and then it will be over" versus "it will hurt less when it's happening but then I'll be dealing with it for days later," I will take the former.

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#2 of 20 Old 01-30-2010, 05:02 PM
 
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Oh me too. Totally agree.
My last OB looked at my like I was such a freak when I told her that I was more afraid of an epidural than the pain of childbirth.
Labor was intense but worth it for the natural high afterwards.

Emma - Welsh Wife to DH and Mummy to DS, Lloyd 13/08/07 and Cerys 15/07/10
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#3 of 20 Old 01-30-2010, 05:33 PM
 
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Oh me too. Totally agree.
My last OB looked at my like I was such a freak when I told her that I was more afraid of an epidural than the pain of childbirth.
This exactly. I've never really articulated it that way, but this is true for me. A needle in my spine? And catheter? Ummm, can we skip those? Sounds much more terrifying than contractions. Now, I reserve the right to change my mind
during labor, but knowing me and my body, I think the needle in the spine bit sounds much scarier.

Oh, and drugs don't do well in my system either. I also used Tylenol and ice after my wisdom teeth were removed.

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#4 of 20 Old 01-30-2010, 06:42 PM
 
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Me too!!!! It's so funny to me. People are not scared of a needle in the spine?? That scares the sh*t out of me!!! And the side effects, and catheter? NO WAY!!!! I'd rather just suck it up and do it and move on. It really shocks me that people are so ready to jump on the "needle in my spine" bandwagon. I really don't get it.

I'm not judging, I just really don't get it. I watched my sis deliver drug free and it really wasn't bad!

Dana- wife to wonderful DH, and a non vaxed happy heathly 2 yr old!

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#5 of 20 Old 01-30-2010, 06:48 PM
 
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DDC Crashing ---

But I wanted to chime in with my complete and total agreement!

I HATE the feeling of numbing meds and, worse, the injection of the med itself, so the last time I needed dental work, I told the dentist, no thanks. He looked at me as if I were crazy and said, "But it will hurt!". I replied, "I gave birth to three children without pain meds; I know "hurt", and I know I can deal with it". So he and the assistant rolled their eyes and started the procedure. I breathed my way through it, with a few clenched fists and curled toes, but made it through. They both commented that they would never have believed it if they had not seen it.

Honestly, birth was less painful than the dental work...
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#6 of 20 Old 01-31-2010, 01:20 AM
 
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I haven't received an injection at the dentist in years - I just hate feeling numb for hours, and the pain is very minimal. My dentist is fantastic and has never questioned my choice. The last time I had something done they used a topical benzocaine and I didn't mind that. I have a few fillings that need to get done next month and I'll either go with nothing or the topical, depending on the dentist's recommendation.

I had my wisdom teeth pulled with just a standard novacaine shot on NYE (10 years ago...) and went out that night. I wasn't offered any pain meds, although I didn't need them at all.

Hopefully my tolerance makes my planned natural homebirth easier... And I'm right there with you guys saying about a shot to the spine - that and having to deal with an IV in my arm is why I decided years ago I didn't want to birth in a hospital if I can avoid it.

Jill, current Pugmama to 3, anxiously awaiting the arrival of our first two-legged baby July 1st.
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#7 of 20 Old 01-31-2010, 03:16 AM
 
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This is veering slightly off topic...
my best friend from high school is a midwife in the UK.
When I was nervous about birthing naturally with DS she said she knew I'd be fine. When we were in school I had the worst menstrual cramps. On the first day of my period I would vomit and have to go home from school every month. It was horrible.
Anyway, in her experience, women who suffer with menstrual cramps cope in labour. She was right because the contractions felt 'familiar'...

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#8 of 20 Old 01-31-2010, 02:24 PM
 
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you can totally do it! What are your plans, a specific method, classes? I suggest hypnobabies or hypnobirthing, or Bradley Method.
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#9 of 20 Old 01-31-2010, 03:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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you can totally do it! What are your plans, a specific method, classes? I suggest hypnobabies or hypnobirthing, or Bradley Method.
I kind of like the "it will hurt and then it will be over" method, combined with "I will prove to all of those 'first contraction and you will be begging for drugs!' people that they're full of it" myself. I'm still researching.

I'm really not interested in classes ("but you'll get to meet other mamas!" is exactly the reason why--seriously, I am beyond antisocial right now and a solitary learner in general--plus I'm far too snarky to actually visualize or breathe in front of a group without making wisecracks that will probably get me politely escorted out of the building...PLUS actually finding six consecutive same-day-of-the-week sessions I can actually attend, given my schedule, is darn near impossible), but will look at books/video.

I tend to do things best when I don't follow a "method"--when I educate myself and kind of pick and choose what seems reasonable and go from there. When I get into doing things by a strict method, I have a tendency to get bogged down in the method and forget exactly what I'm trying to accomplish. (In law school, I tried technicolor highlighting and got so caught up in trying to make it work: "No, the holding goes in red! Reasoning in purple!" that I couldn't exactly figure out what I was trying to learn from it.)

I am also not someone who can work well with reframing what already exists. I'm best just plowing through things. I will not be having "pressure waves" or "surges"--I'll be having contractions and there's nothing wrong with that and they don't scare me. (This is also why I will not be using my "nursies" to provide "milkies," nor will I be "potty learning" my child--the latter seems grammatically off as well. But anyhow.)

That said--I do have the ability to sort of mentally "move" pain to where it's more convenient (I was able to move menstrual cramps into my shoulders, which for some reason made them a lot more comfortable). So I know that certain mental exercises and visualizations do work for me. I'd probably work with that, take parts of hypnosis-based methods and leave the stuff that doesn't work, like the vocabulary.

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#10 of 20 Old 02-01-2010, 12:36 AM
 
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I'm really not interested in classes ("but you'll get to meet other mamas!" is exactly the reason why--seriously, I am beyond antisocial right now and a solitary learner in general--plus I'm far too snarky to actually visualize or breathe in front of a group without making wisecracks that will probably get me politely escorted out of the building...PLUS actually finding six consecutive same-day-of-the-week sessions I can actually attend, given my schedule, is darn near impossible), but will look at books/video.


That said--I do have the ability to sort of mentally "move" pain to where it's more convenient (I was able to move menstrual cramps into my shoulders, which for some reason made them a lot more comfortable). So I know that certain mental exercises and visualizations do work for me. I'd probably work with that, take parts of hypnosis-based methods and leave the stuff that doesn't work, like the vocabulary.
You sound just like me before my dd. I was really good with pain and moving it, and hated, absolutely hated the birthing stuff, the breathing exercises? Forget it! I got so mad when nurse tried to make me do it. It just seemed so cheesy. I was in for a rude awakening thanks to my daughter's position.

Unfortunately, I lost control. I believe now that I was having back labor...not to mention my daughter came out forehead first. Things that they should have helped me with but didn't understand I guess! I had severe tearing and did end up with an epidural.

I will be more prepared this time around to demand new positions to birth if I end up in back labor again. (I will also have a doula to advocate on my behalf) My last experience was very traumatic and I expect to be more in control this time and hopefully go naturally. Even though I will not be doing classes I will be reading about different types of birthing that don't include hee hee hee, hoo, hoo, hoo. I will not be asking for an epidural, but I won't deny myself either if I really feel the need at some point in order to progress (last time I tensed up so bad that I wasn't dilating). I hope that the knowledge of birthing before, being older and more knowledge about birthing in general will bring me to a more calm and natural birth.

I need to read Ina May's book again, I read it before my DD and thought I had it mastered! Ha! Now I have a context in which to read these books.

Artist, teacher, wife and mommy to DSS, DD1, DD2 and surprise baby girl on the way, 7/12!

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#11 of 20 Old 02-01-2010, 01:25 AM
 
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yeah. epidurals scare the proverbials outta me.

stick something in my spine?! no thank you. i'll take the natural pain.

Lindsay + Trev = DD RóisÃ*n (9/07) & DS Ãamonn (7/2010)
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#12 of 20 Old 02-03-2010, 12:52 PM
 
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I hear what you are saying about classes and your style of learning- BUT I would like to add this (not that you asked for my advice) I co-host a natural childbirth board on another mommy message board, I've been on the board for over 2 years and co-hosted for about a year and a half. I've seen a lot of ladies come through, and I suggest doing as much as you can. Even if it's just a LOT of reading. I also suggest staying physically fit with some cardio so your body is prepared.

You know yourself best obviously, but unfortunately from what I have witnessed, just thinking you will be fine is usually not enough. I took a wonderful class, read tons of books, worked out my whole pregnancy and I still had a tough time. I did succeed though.

Make sure your husband is totally on board and is very familiar with the stages of labor, what to look for, and not to offer you meds! Transition is the time when most women think they can't do it, it's very normal- and at that point you're almost done!

Hopefully this doesn't seem condescending- that's not my intent.
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#13 of 20 Old 02-03-2010, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I hear what you are saying about classes and your style of learning- BUT I would like to add this (not that you asked for my advice) I co-host a natural childbirth board on another mommy message board, I've been on the board for over 2 years and co-hosted for about a year and a half. I've seen a lot of ladies come through, and I suggest doing as much as you can. Even if it's just a LOT of reading. I also suggest staying physically fit with some cardio so your body is prepared.

You know yourself best obviously, but unfortunately from what I have witnessed, just thinking you will be fine is usually not enough. I took a wonderful class, read tons of books, worked out my whole pregnancy and I still had a tough time. I did succeed though.

Make sure your husband is totally on board and is very familiar with the stages of labor, what to look for, and not to offer you meds! Transition is the time when most women think they can't do it, it's very normal- and at that point you're almost done!

Hopefully this doesn't seem condescending- that's not my intent.
I understand completely--and I will (and have been) reading a lot. Like I said, I do a ton of research so I will have an arsenal of information (and my husband is reading up, too--his first child was a planned c-section, so he's coming at this as a newbie, too). It's not that I'd go in unprepared...I'm just not going in married to one particular method. If I do that, I get stuck on the method.

But I'll take what I can from the Bradley, from the hypnos, and from the book I got from my NCB-friendly doctor that doesn't advocate a particular method but has a good chart of positions (and what the position might be good for--relieving back labor, etc.) and a discussion of when intervention might be truly necessary (as opposed to convenient for the doctor or to protect against lawsuits). My cousin's a childbirth educator and she's sent me a lot of good stuff, too.

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#14 of 20 Old 02-03-2010, 04:32 PM
 
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Totally agree Cheryl.

[QUOTE=Cheryl33;15020655]
Make sure your husband is totally on board and is very familiar with the stages of labor, what to look for, and not to offer you meds!
My Dh was fairly useless because he's scared and squeamish (!)but he was awesome at saying, 'Don't offer her meds. If she needs anything, she'll tell you!'
Transition is the time when most women think they can't do it, it's very normal- and at that point you're almost done!
I was so glad I read McCutcheons Bradley book which talks about emotional signposts of labor. If I hadn't remembered that self-doubt was a sign of transition, I would've caved and got the drugs!

QUOTE]

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#15 of 20 Old 02-03-2010, 09:32 PM
 
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When I was pregnant with my daughter, we took a Holistic class that was taught by our Doula, right in her home. It didn't have one specific method that it focused on either. It was great!!! This time I am choosing hypnobabies, which you can do 100% on your own. It has a really high success rate, all the ladies I have seen on the board I co-host use it have raved about it, and been successful.

I highly recommend the Bradley Book for the emotional stages of labor information, as mentioned above by Welsh. Wonderful for your husband as well- they have a chapter right in the book for them especially.

I also recommend Ina May's Guide to Childbirth- so inspiring!
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#16 of 20 Old 02-04-2010, 11:22 AM
 
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My last experience was very traumatic and I expect to be more in control this time and hopefully go naturally. Even though I will not be doing classes I will be reading about different types of birthing that don't include hee hee hee, hoo, hoo, hoo. I will not be asking for an epidural, but I won't deny myself either if I really feel the need at some point in order to progress (last time I tensed up so bad that I wasn't dilating). I hope that the knowledge of birthing before, being older and more knowledge about birthing in general will bring me to a more calm and natural birth. I need to read Ina May's book again, I read it before my DD and thought I had it mastered! Ha! Now I have a context in which to read these books.
This is why it's so good to read a broad range of coping techniques because what works for one woman may not work for another. And until you go into labour, you just won't know! My natural default is to do breathing to work through the pain -- I think it's from 2.5 decades of dancing and bodywork, being very used to breathing as my body works through the marathon of labour.

As a doula, attending my first birth where the mother did *not* want to breathe, it was very eye-opening for me. To cope in labour you need Rhythm, Relaxation and Ritual. Some people breath in rhythn, some beat out a rhythm with their hand, or flap their hand, or stomp their feet or rock, etc. Some people find counting through the ctxn helping, or hearing someone counting through forwards or backwards ("Hey, you've passed through the midpoint now"). Some people need distraction such as fingers gently stroking down their back, while others say, "Don't touch me!"

Artsy - I have to say I'm glad to hear you say that if you need an epidural again at some point because of maternal exhaustion or failure to progress (the latter of which sometimes ends in c-section) you will consider it. An epidural has it's place. That said, I hope you have the kind of birth you are hoping for.

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Originally Posted by Cheryl33 View Post
Even if it's just a LOT of reading. I also suggest staying physically fit with some cardio so your body is prepared.

You know yourself best obviously, but unfortunately from what I have witnessed, just thinking you will be fine is usually not enough. I took a wonderful class, read tons of books, worked out my whole pregnancy and I still had a tough time. I did succeed though.
ITA

I think we also have to be careful about our expectations as we go into labour. Labour has it's own plan. You may have wishes, dreams and hopes for your birth, but ultimately, you will have to be present and respond to the situation as it comes up. Labour really works best if you can surrender to it. This can be one of the scariest parts, sometimes we can't picture ourselves doing what we need to do, becoming so vulnerable and primal, to push our babies out. It really works best though if you can. Some people feel really afraid to "lose control" by crying or whatever, but that's what birth needs.

And now, a totally embarassing TMI moment:

During my first birth I was very inhibited but still managed to have the baby naturally. Very traumatic birth. At any rate, with the second birth, everything happened so fast and I felt an intense urge to push after only 2.5 hrs of labour . I allowed my body to go primal and push--it felt like how muscles engage when you're barfing, except going in the other direction. As I let my body do what it needed to do and pushed, I could feel that I was having a BM. There was a part of my brain that was sooo embarassed and I realized I had to make a choice: if I am inhibited and hold back, trying to figure out how to make the muscles work so I won't poop, but still push out the baby, I was going to be there for a very long time, it would be exhausting, I won't be progressing, and I'll be focussing on avoiding feelings of shame. OR I could just go with the primal brain, let the midwives discretely cover it up and wipe it away like I've seen them do for other women when I worked as a doula, and life goes on. I decided the latter. You certainly hear about women who poop when giving birth and since I didn't the first time, I thought, "Well *I'M* not one of those women!" ... but ya know what? This time I was. Humbling but I had to let my body go, surrender, and do what it needed it to do to get that baby out. 25 min of pushing with urge and one poop vs. 2 hrs of purple pushing the first time? I'll take the former.

Okay now that I totally shared too much information........... someone agree with me!

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#17 of 20 Old 02-04-2010, 10:42 PM
 
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Aww that's OK like that kid's book says "everybody poops!" I was embarrassed about it happening though but my husband put it like this "it's going to happen, it's like rolling a watermelon over a tube of toothpaste"
I also wanted to comment a little off topic, but my friend had her wisdom teeth pulled about 5 years ago and was put under. Well within the months afterward she wasn't acting herself. She started to think the TV was talking to her and thought that when people called her they weren't who they said they were and then she got VERY depressed. Well she was diagnosed with bi-polar which was shcoking because she never showed any signs of it later. What her family was told by the dr. is that some people have a tendency toward mental illness, but it's dormant and something like anesthesia can actually trigger it in some people.
This terrified me because my mom's side of the family has a major history of mental illness and depression. I've never had to be put under, but I am so scared of having to be for a C-section. My body definitly does not respond well to medication. My-quil makes me super hyper and I feel like I'm on speed (or what I imagine it to feel like) and with my first birth I had so many interventions because my body would have a side effect to one drug and then another drug was needed to counteract that and so on. I hated HATED the epidural and now have chronic back pain, which of course I read later is a side effect woman can have after receiving one.
ANYWAY, I am so for going as natural as possible and will be open to medication or intervention only if medically necessary.
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#18 of 20 Old 02-04-2010, 11:14 PM
 
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my husband put it like this "it's going to happen, it's like rolling a watermelon over a tube of toothpaste"


ETA - that's scary about the medication triggering her predisposition to bi-polar disorder. I was a teenager and tried acid ONE TIME during a troubled period in my life. I think it was one of the first times I ever had a FULL BLOWN intense panic attack/anxiety attack. Panic disorder is in my family tree and triggered off my gene.... set me up for a number of difficult years there.

OTOH when we find the right med that works for us it can be a godsend too!

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#19 of 20 Old 02-05-2010, 09:57 AM
 
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To cope in labour you need Rhythm, Relaxation and Ritual. Some people breath in rhythn, some beat out a rhythm with their hand, or flap their hand, or stomp their feet or rock, etc.
This is so interesting. With my DD when I was in transition I was bumping my head against the side of the bed in a sort of rhythm. My DH put his hand in between my head and the bed and I told him "NO!". The midwife came over and took a look (presumably to make sure I wasn't bashing my head and doing damange) and suggested DH to let me be as it seemed to be working for me.

DH and I have talked about this - he thought I was bonking my head to provide distraction, and I explained that that wasn't it, but never had a good way to explain what it was. Now I have the perfect words, I couldn't tap my foot so I was tapping my head!

So interesting!

Me (36), my DH (37), our DD (12/07), and our new DS (7/7/10)
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#20 of 20 Old 02-05-2010, 08:42 PM
 
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Tarasattva The primal brain knows what it needs!

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