When you gave birth to your child or children, were you nervous? Me? I was shaking like a leaf, completely scared and freaking out (but an emergency C-section didn’t help). But besides being mentally in a spiral of nervousness, there is a side effect for feeling this way. According to a new study by Akershus University Hospital in Oslo, Norway, being nervous and scared of childbirth leads to a longer labor.
According to their study of about two thousand moms, researchers found that those who were scared of the childbirth process had a labor that, on average, lasted 47 minutes longer than that of the non-nervous birther. “The average duration of labor was eight hours for women with fear of childbirth, compared with six hours and 28 minutes for women without fear,” the study found. Why does this happen? Apparently, anxiety and fear could have an effect on the uterus being able to contract, due to the increase in the blood of the hormone catecholamine.
But the researchers delivered their findings with caution, not wanting to discourage vaginal births. The babies come out – it just takes them a while. “Therefore, elective cesarean delivery should not be routinely recommended,” researcher Dr. Samantha Salvesen Adams said.
Were you scared when you delivered your child?