Category Archives: Support

Labour Pains?

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As soon as I found out I was pregnant although very scary the one thing that didn’t scare me was the pain, as I knew I wanted every possible pain relief option on the market to date. Load me up, I wasn’t planning on feeling a thing… The look on my NCT teachers face when I told her there was no way id be bouncing on a ball with gas and air was priceless… Well 8 months later when I found myself pushing, I ate my bloody words, literally. I felt everything mean everything. Your going to feel a ‘slight burn’ the midwife said, a burn? More like Fire!! Well as you probably gathered this wasn’t my choice but as Jasper made his arrival pretty quick, My only choice was to get on with it! Below I have listed some pain relief options for you to think about, if like me your scardy cat I have added ones with the strongest to the mildest relief. Enjoy.

Tens Machine. The Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator (TENS) This works by sending electric pulses to your body via electrodes on the skin. The longer you use it the more effective it becomes. You can start with this if you think your in it for the long haul, if not Id go straight for the hard stuff.

Water. This is the one thing I wish I had chosen, the only thing that put me off is that you cant have an epidural, so I disregarded it rather quickly. Although useless as a pain relief the warm water helps you relax, so your much calmer, either using a bath or a specially designed birthing pool so less stress for you and your baby. Definitely one to consider.

Entonox. In other terms gas and air. Who ever though Air is an appropriate pain relief was clearly on something ELSE! AIR!! Anyway, When this was first offered to me (after my demands for an epidural were shot down) after my first few puffs I sounded like something from the exorcist, no joke! think I scared the living day lights out of my midwife, especially when i pulled it off the wall later, that was awkward. Anyway this is the only pain relief I had, and to be honest not sure if it worked but it did make me feel drunk, sick and made my mouth dry, aside from that it does take your mind of the pain for a little while.

Pethidine. I wasn’t interested in the slightest in this form of pain relief, as it doesn’t have the best rep. It can make you feel very sick, which on top of labour pains its not ideal. If you want to give it a try, do it in early labour as if given in the later stages it crosses the placenta and can effect your baby’s breathing.

Epidural. I wanted this. Although I feel a slight hint of gloat that I had my baby without any pain relief its not enough to go without next time. Ill be hooked up to this as soon as I get hold of an anesthetist with my next baby. Epidural is passed into the small of your back by a giant needle. It takes away the pain so I have heard… But it also takes away the feelings in your legs if you have a full epidural, although you can ask for a mobile one, which you would be able to walk, a little, But If your planning a 10k straight after this is not for you. The epidural may drastically slow down your labour, and increases your risk of intervention, but if your don’t want to feel a thing, This is the one for you.

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Support when needed…

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You may be familiar with the term Postnatal depression, but what about Antenatal Depression?

Most pregnant women will have their ups and most certainty have their downs whether they have a partner involved or not. Stress, tears and anxiety come with the territory, but with depression effecting up to 15% of mums-to-be, the risk of developing depression throughout your 9 months of pregnancy varies from woman to woman. A number of things can contribute to feeling depressed but being single, feeling alone and even severe morning sickness can be a factor. Recent research shows that a rapid increase in our hormone levels at the beginning of pregnancy can disrupt brain chemistry, which can also lead to you feeling low also.

Below are some of the common risk factors of antenatal Depression.

  • Personal or family history of depression – If you or a family member has previously suffered with depression you could be a slightly higher risk of depression.
  • Relationship difficulties – relationships are never easy, whatever your relationship status when pregnant, it can be very easy to feel detached from the people you love whether it be a partner, a friend or a family member, you can sometimes feel like you’re the only pregnant woman in the world and no one understands you. When possible talk to a pregnant friend or someone who has been pregnant so they can relate to your feelings.
  • Fertility treatments – If you have planned your pregnancy and gone down the fertility treatment route, it can be just stressful as a unplanned pregnancy, financial worries, anxiety about losing the pregnancy and the stress of fertility procedures can all contribute to depression.
  • Stressful day-to-day life – a break up, moving home, new job, financial worries are day-to-day stresses when you’re not pregnant. If you have a lot going off in your life at once, take a break. You have a little life growing inside you which needs his mummy to be on top form for not only his health but also your own health is just as important.
  • Past history of abuse – women who have suffered with emotional, physical, sexual and verbal abuse may have low self esteem, a sense of helplessness and feeling of isolation all of which can bring on depression throughout pregnancy. Painful memories can arise and with hormones taking over your body you may feel loss of control, which may mirror the helplessness you experienced when you were abused.
  • Age –  Feeling alone throughout pregnancy especially if your friends have finished with their baby making or not even started is common. One thing you need to realise is that you are not alone and you have plenty of support whether it be from your midwife or a school support worker there is always someone around to lend an ear to listen.

It can be hard to determine what are normal feelings in pregnancy and what is depression as many of the signs mimic pregnancy symptoms. At its most severe, antenatal depression can even result in women having a termination, then bitterly regretting it when their symptoms subside. Chronic anxiety, feeling isolated, irritability and sadness are just some of the symptoms of depression.

Daniella X

If at all you feel you may be suffering from depression of any kind don’t be scared to contact your GP, Midwife or even me HERE . We also have a support section, which you can find HERE which has all the contact numbers you need.