To ask about labour on induction wards(1 Post)
I had DC a month ago and over the last few days have been reflecting on the birth.
I was going to pass my thoughts to the hospital but was wondering whether my experience and the experience of a friend who gave birth around the same time was normal.
I was induced and admitted to the special ward as DC was two weeks overdue. When I arrived there were a couple of other women with their partners and relatives. It turned out they had been on the ward a few days but were yet to go into labour. One of the women was playing music really loudly on her phone. It was a normal ward, bright lights, noise and curtain cubical. The family group were noisy and excited - although to a normal extent. However I later realised that some other patients behind curtains were clearly in labour and in a lot of pain. Some of them what sounded like fairly full on labour through the night while some of the other women's partners were snoring. They were left like that for several hours at least.
The next morning I went into labour. I would have loved to have done this stage in privacy at home and not behind a curtain on a dusty ward. A couple next door had arrived with loads of friends and relatives. I had to listen to one of them talking about how they were going to order chicken nuggets from McDonald's while I had painful contractions inches away!
I was eventually admitted to the delivery suite because of other complications after about 5 hours and the staff were fantastic. But a friend who was induced the next day was left on the same ward with no pain relief until she was 10cm dilated. She said she was gnawing a pillow so the other women didn't hear her screams.
I know the NHS is stretched but the more I think about it the more I feel it isn't right that women are left for hours to labour pretty much in front of strangers with little or no pain relief. Even if you are not yet 4cm dilated you can really in a lot of pain.
However I'm not sure what the solution could be. Private rooms for women in the early stages are probably not practical. Perhaps a calmer quieter area for women where labour is starting. I'd be keen to hear others' suggestions about how things could change and whether these kind of induction wards, where women in labour are left next to those waiting for things to kick off for hours, usual practice?
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