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Managing Pain During Labor & Delivery

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Managing Pain During Labor & Delivery

Understanding Your Pain Management Options

When preparing for your little one to arrive, it's important to consider your pain management options to make the labor and delivery process as comfortable as possible.

Non-Intervention (natural) Pain Management Methods

When it comes to managing pain during the labor and delivery process, many women choose to have a non-interventional birth, which is more commonly referred to as a natural birth. For women who have a full-term pregnancy (37-40 weeks) with little to no complications, choosing a medication-free delivery is an option.

While no medication and little-to-no medical intervention are preferred with this type of birthing experience, some common natural pain management techniques include:

  • Deep breathing exercises
  • Meditation
  • Walking around
  • Listening to soothing music
  • Getting into whirlpool tub
  • Taking a shower
  • Massage
  • Sitting/bouncing on birthing ball

Intravenous and Intramuscular Pain Medications

During the earlier stages of labor, medications can be injected into the bloodstream to help provide mothers-to-be with a sense of relief, lessening the severity of contraction pains. Pain-relieving medications are either administered intravenously (through an IV) or intramuscularly (through injection).

Epidural Block

An epidural block, more commonly just called an epidural, is the most frequently used pain management option used in the United States. With an epidural, medication is administered through a tube that is placed in the lower back. This form of pain management will cause you to lose some feeling in the lower half of your body, but you will remain awake and alert throughout the delivery process.

Spinal Block

Similarly to an epidural block, a spinal block is a regional form of anesthesia. However, this form of pain management is administered with a single shot that is injected into the spine. Typically, this is used during cesarean section births.

General Anesthesia

General anesthesia is typically reserved for emergency situations during the birthing process. It is administered through an IV or through a mask. With this pain management technique, the mother is not conscious during the delivery process.

If you have questions or concerns about what pain management options may be right for you, reach out to your obstetrician for more information.

Women’s Health Services in Macomb, Illinois

At the Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinic, you can expect compassionate and exceptional care no matter your female reproductive health condition or concern. Our board-certified obstetricians and gynecologists provide women’s health services for women of all ages, from your first period to menopause and beyond.