Pain Relief - Opinions please!

(10 Posts)
Teddypom Sat 05-Mar-16 02:30:56

Insomnia has kicked in tonight so here I am reading posts on mums net!
With only a few days until my due date I am thinking about pain relief options.
When having my daughter 4 years ago I used a tens machine at home and then gas/air and epidural at the hospital (after 23 hours)!
I am a high risk pregnancy so am not allowed in the MLU - a water birth is therefore out of the question (think I'll scream if one more person suggests that I have a water birth)!
The only other option that I understand to be available is pethidine. I've heard a couple of horror stories though - like being completely out of it but awake and distressed for each contraction! I have also been told of people not remembering the birth.
As the days tick down I am getting more anxious as to what choices I have so any advice would be welcomed.
(Forgot to add that after receiving an epidural with my daughter, it only numbed one side of my body! Having read lots of stories on here I don't think I necessarily had a bad birth experience but I felt quite upset about it for a long time afterwards).
So - is that all the options I have - pethidine or an epidural?!
Thank you all in advance. xxx

InFrance2014 Sat 05-Mar-16 10:26:28

There is a thread active here at the moment about using Juju Sundin's Birth Skills techniques. They are not pain "relief" as such, but they are effective pain management techniques, simple and easy to use, based around physiological (i.e. bodily) responses. They might not be enough for you to get all the way, but they are for some people, and you can always ask for epidural or G&A later if it's too much.
You've not really got time left to buy the book and read it, but basic ideas are that your brain can only process so many signals at once, so you can actively distract it from contraction pain by giving other strong signals. It's not about trying to pretend it doesn't hurt, but giving you ways to deal with and 'block out' the pain during the contractions. These include:

- using your hands to grip something tightly and repeatedly, focusing on this very hard
- bouncing up and down or stamping feet
- vocalising, i.e. using voice to "be louder than the pain" (I and many others find this effective for later stages especially, you won't feel stupid bellowing by that point!)
- various visual techniques for earlier labour too

If you read the other thread you will see some recent feedback from people who used these methods.

Your second birth is likely be faster too, so you might find you manage ok over a shorter time span than the first time.
Good luck smile

Essexgirlupnorth Sat 05-Mar-16 10:33:00

I had pethidine with my first. I had been put off by the horror stories at NCT class but had a very long and slow first stage so when the midwife suggested it I had it. It helped me get some rest and make me less aware of the contractions. Had worn off by the time I was ready to push so remember that clearly. Baby was a little sleepy after but found it a positive experience.
You would probably be best discussing your pain relief options with a midwife at your hospital. Do they know why your epidural didn't work properly first time round?

kiki22 Sat 05-Mar-16 10:33:06

I had tens, gas and air, a fee shots of pethidine, an epidural and a spinal, loved the gas and air but it soon became too much, pethidine makes you loopy and out of control like being really super drunk, the epidural took away the pain in my belly but not my back, the spinal however was wonderful could not feel a thing, had forceps an episiotomy and 2 3rd deg tears never felt a bit of it.

I can hardly remember ds being born not sure if it was the pethidine or not, the hospital suggested it was due to blood loss but things started getting fuzzy after the first shot of peth 12 hours before ds was born so...

kiki22 Sat 05-Mar-16 10:35:06

A few shots*

fedupofpeppa Sat 05-Mar-16 11:01:39

If your epidural only partially worked last time, it was probably just positioning so good chance of it working better this time.

I found pethidine allowed me to rest when labour slowed but has made me forget huge chunks of my labour. Not sure if that is good or bad!

Don't know if your hospital does it but some also offer remifentanil. That is a bit like pethidine but you control the release by clicking a button and it only lasts a few minutes ie you match it to your contractions. It doesn't impact your baby at all so no drowsiness after and it isn't capped so you can have it all labour. It does make you feel trippy so if you want full awareness maybe it's not good but it's a better option to pethidine in my opinion.
It requires midwife with you at all times so depends on what's going on as to whether they let you have it. I am definitely having it next time around but I have limited pain relief options as confirmed by my anaesthetist.

nixxxy Sat 05-Mar-16 22:48:59

My hospital offers Meptid which is 'cleaner' than Pethidine and doesn't hang out in your system as long/is less trippy/doesn't make the baby as drowsy. Might be worth asking about!

glueandstick Sun 06-Mar-16 10:57:31

I had all of them except pethidine. Take the lot. Best 24 hours ever.

spnfan Sun 06-Mar-16 14:15:45

I had pethidine and Gas and air.
Pethidine was awesome and I got an hours kip. (My labour was about 26 hours, so not short but not long either.) once the pethidine wore off I switched to g&a which would have seen me through to the end but ended up having an emcs.

The spinal was frigging AMAZING!! I had asked for an epidural but the midwife delayed me. If the spinal is anything to go for I would totally have the epi next time!! grin

glueandstick Fri 11-Mar-16 09:30:11

I could have married the anaesthetist in the spot the epidural was so good. I may have told him this.

Did not enjoy the spinal block so much. Very odd feeling but did its job.

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