just wanted to say hi and ask a question

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  1. Hello TPFer mammas and mammas-to-be,

    I normally live over in the prada/MJ/balenciaga sections of this forum but since ive wanted a baby for many years i thought id check this out!

    Ive been with my lovely boyfriend for about 3.5 years and am angling for a bit of bling big time :graucho:

    On my 31st b'day (last month) my boy said that in 18 months we could try for a baby - hooorrraaaaaaay! The idea being that i have it when im 33 (cause i dont want to wait any longer than that).

    Anyways, thats me, and im going to do lots of reading from now till then.

    One question .... can i organise to get an epidural the minute i get to hospital ... and once you have it, does it really take all the pain away. So do you deliver in a calm and cool manner? I am really really scared at the whole pain/ripping/baby coming out of 'there' but i couldnt do the whole Caesar thing. Thanks so much you gals!

  2. I can't answer fully from experience, just from my conversations with my OB and my sister in law, who is also an OB. (I ended up with an emergency c-section before I got to the epidural point.)

    For your first question, yes, you can get the epidural as soon as you get to the hospital, though it won't be the minute you get there, since they'll need to check you in, get you settled in your room, get the anesthesiologist, etc. However, after you get the epidural, you'll probably have to be catheterized, won't be able to walk around, and will be hooked up to monitors which will limit the positions you can be in. It can also slow down your labor, so a lot of the time they will recommend that you wait until you are 4-5 cm dilated, but if you insist, you can get it early.

    As far as what it does for pain, I can't talk about it from experience, but from what I'm told, it really does block all the pain. My sis in law has lots of stories about people getting the epidural and going to sleep through a big part of labor. They do use them as anesthesia for c-sections as well (I had a spinal block instead), so I'd imagine that they do block all the pain. Hopefully you'll get more info from other people.
  3. ^kimberf summed it up well. Once you get the epidural you'll be stuck in bed.

    I had an epidural while I was having my dd. I worked well, I didn't feel much of anything. As soon as I would lay on my side that leg would go numb. My labor was a little difficult and I ended up having an episotmie. As horrible as it sounds I didn't feel any pain when the doctor cut me. I just felt pressure. For me, since I had an episotmie the recovery was difficult. Having the stitches made everything I did very painful. I would be in pain doing everyday things like walking around, going to the bathroom and trying to lay down.
  4. hi there
    well - great that you have your plan!
    i was totally against the epidural but had to have it in order to relax the birthing situation. i did not like it because the numbness in my legs stressed me more than it helped. i personally recommend to try contractions out and then ask for the epidural so that you can judge whether you really need it. i found contractions not bad at all, they didn't bother me as much as i was expecting. everyone reacts differently in that situation.

    i recommend you sign the forms relating to the epidural before you go for giving birth, at an earlier appointment, because it is really freaky to sign about the potential dangers when you are trying to get a person out of you.

    the epidural is actually just meant to help you with the contractions to dilate you to 10 cms. when the birthing/pushing part begins they have to let it wear off because otherwise you are not able to feel when you have to push. honestly, at that point you really do not care about much except getting the baby out of you ;).

    btw, yes it works well. I had to have a c-section in the end and they did it on the epidural so it does block all the pain but it also restricts your ability to move - I didn't like that personally.
  5. thanks ladies - so you cant have the epidural while the actual 'birth' bit happens? hmmm ... i dont know why its freaked me so much ... i just cant imagine the pain. And i know that its all worth it etc etc ... im not 'good' with pain.
  6. Gosh mjlover1977

    I'm so glad that you've asked all these questions. I'm no good with pain and am seriously considering a C-section. However, I know that the recovery time is much more painful and longer.

    My DH says that he can't deal with the idea of me in labor. I'm very scared of the pain. I know it'll be worth it but would like to have all my options laid out.
  7. I had an epidural for the birth of my 3rd child and it was fabulous. The pain of the contractions disappeared almost immediately and I was able to enjoy the experience of giving birth (unlike the other times when I was in agony). It's strange because I knew when I was having a contraction and when to push but there was no pain. For me, it was bliss.
  8. Problem with the epi is that it interferes with you having an active labour and makes it far more likely that you will have a c-section (which is a hell of a lot more painful than a vaginal birth - I've had both). With the c-section comes a whole heap of extra risks (increased incidence of infection, more risk that your baby will ed up in NICU) and a longer recover time. Of course c-sections save lives but unfortunately at the moment there are way too many unessescary c-sections.
    A lot of people discover that with good support that their pain tolerance is a whole heap better than they thought and most women who attempt a natural birth have much higher satisfaction levels. You've got lots of time to explore your options so as well as looking at chemical pain relief maybe you should also look at things like hypno-birthing, water birth, doula support and midwife led care.
    Good-luck :smile:
  9. ^ i fear that the stress I went through eventually led to a c-section. but I would like to say that my recovery was amazing, mainly because I really forced myself to move which helps a lot. I was up and moving the next day, and left hospital after 3 days, like after a natural birth. i still hope I can do natural this time...
  10. I find that most "birth plans" don't go as planned. You could find that a c-section is required when the time comes, one never knows. You will find the strength to endure any situation that comes your way ! Good luck !
  11. I loved my epidural. There is no way if I had another child that I would go without one unless the contractions were somehow not as intense. I never lost complete sensation after receiving my epi & I dont think most women do. I could still feel when I was contracting/pressure minus pain.

    Usually the nurses/ Dr. want you to be 4-5 centimeters dilated before they give you the epi but I have read that if you ask for it sooner they cannot deny you.?
  12. okay cool - thanks gals! that has made me feel a lot better! My mum had epis with both myself and my sis and didnt have to have a caesar.
  13. I've had 2 kids and 2 epidurals. My first experience wasn't so hot. I could still feel everything on the right side of my body the whole time. The only good thing about it was it made it much easier to push the baby out. My 2nd epidural was much better. It totally worked and I could sleep until it was time to push. My labor didn't seem to last any longer b/c of it either. I'm a big fan of getting the epidural as soon as you can. But, they don't admit you and immediately give you one. Like OP said it takes a while to get it. I recieved both of mine when I could really start to feel the contractions. I think around 5 or 6 cenimeters.
  14. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but it really depends on the health care system where you live and if I recall correctly, you are in Australia, right?
    I live in Canada and it is much different than in the US. I wanted an epidural with both of my kids and was fortunate enough to get it but it was purely through luck. I requested it from my doctor when I first found out I was pregnant but in our health care system, it is not so simple. You have to be already 3 cms dialated minimum and an anaesthesiologist has to be available to administer the epidural. If the anaesthesiologist is in another surgery or if an emergency case comes in or if they need to be in a C-section, then you are out of luck and don't get an epidural. This happened to my SIL with 2 of her 3 kids. She was begging for an epidural and they refused her 2 out of the 3 times. You cannot even "pay" for it in advance yourself as this is not permitted. In this same way, we are not able to schedule elective C-sections. A C-section will be ordered by the doctor only if the baby is breech or if you have exhausted all other alternatives and need an emergency C-section. SO...it really depends on your health care system. Good luck! I know that I am thrilled I got my epidurals! They help immensely with the pain although you will need to "feel" the birth so they will turn off the epidural once you are dialated to 10cms so that you can feel enough to push the baby out.
  15. 27 years ago when I had my daughter, my doctor did not believe in epidurals and I did not get one. I went through the whole 10 centimeters (hours) with nothing. The only thing that kept me calm was someone had to brush my hair constantly. It had nothing to do with how I looked, it was calming for me. Ironically, when they took me to the delivery room, they had to put me out because they had to use forsups on her.

    My son, who was born 10 years later, was with another dr. He said they would have to epi ready for me when i arrived at the hospital. Instead, I didn't want it because I have panic attacks about not being able to move, so I had my husband wheel me around the maternity ward, as that calmed me. When they MADE me go back to my room so they could hook me up to the baby monitor, they asked me if I wanted the epi. I said no. This started at 3:00 pm. They continued to ask me every 30 minutes. My dr. came in several times trying to talk me into it. I had not dilated past 3 centimeters for 14 hours, and the anethes. came in again, and my husband finally told him to just SAY he was looking at my back, and he slipped it in. I gave birth 30 minutes later. I could not believe how fast it went after that epi. The epi helped for like one minute, and then the pain shifted to my right side. But it was quick because I was delivering. DAMNIT. If only I had known. I do not like the numbness and I panic, so that is the only reason I kept saying no. My husband on the other hand, got tired of me squeezing his arm for every contraction, and seeing me in so much pain, that he decided for me.

    Get the epi as soon as you get there and get hooked up to the monitors. You won't feel a thing after that and you will be thrilled when that little guy/gal comes out.