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Are You Making Your Labor Unnecessarily Painful?

Labor pain sucks. It hurts like nothing else and for some women labor lasts (for what seems like) forever.  My longest labor was 16 hours and my shortest was 5 hours which still felt like a long time to be in pain.

From what I read though not everyone in labor explains it to be as painful as I do.  A mixture of genetics, societal support and anxiety can all factor into how painful your labor is. As well as any medical interventions, like pitocen which can dramatically increase the pain of your contractions.

The position that you labor in plays a large part in how strong your contractions are perceived as well. Read on to find out if you are making your labor unnecessarily painful.

Gravity is your best friend during labor.  It will help the baby move down the birth canal and will speed up the dilation of your cervix. Sadly though many women end up laboring on their backs — working against gravity and prolonging the time and pain of labor.

There are positions that will work with gravity while you labor:

Walking: Nothing better then gravity through walking. The movement will also encourage things to get moving.

Sitting in a chair: Gravity while being supported in a chair keeps things moving and comfortable.

All fours: This position eases back pain and can help encourage the baby to get into correct position.

Rocking: Sitting on an exercise ball is like sitting in a chair but with the benefit of soothing movement.

Slow dance: Placing your arms around a partners neck and slowly dance in spot will work to relieve pain.

Gravity is also your best friend during the birth of your child.  I am personally not a fan of the legs up in stirrups and calculated pushing that you hear many women’s doctors recommend (including my first birth).  During the second stage of labor (when you have the urge to push) it has been recommended that the best way to prevent tears, speed up the process through gravity and opening up the pelvis is to use the squatting position.

:: What position did you find worked best for labor and birth? ::

image credit: mamaloves via Flickr

Related: Induction of Labor is Not Always Bad

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