Saturday, March 27, 2010

Pain relief in labour

Labour is painful so it’s worth considering what options are available to help you out
• A TENS or Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation machine delivers small electrical pulses to the body through pads on the back, these block pain signals and encourage your body to produce endorphins, which are natural painkillers. They are not very effective though.
• Gas and air or entonox is inhaled through a facemask or mouthpiece and works by anaesthetising the pain.Good pain killer but not available in majority of birthing centres in India.But you can always ask your obstetrician to confirm,just in case it is available.
• An epidural is a powerful local anaesthetic that is injected into the spine, it still allows you to move around and feel the pushing sensations. Side effects can include a fall in blood pressure and headaches(incidence is not very frequent).
• There are other painkilling medication available, such as pethidine, but these can cause side sleepy mother and baby.
• There are pros and cons to each of these options, by going through them with your doctor in your third trimester you should be able to determine, which will work best for you.

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