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How far dilated did you get with just a TENS?

(138 Posts)
BoysBoysBoysAndMe Sun 28-Oct-12 20:34:12

Got one for ds3.

Not used one before.

Just curious how effective women have found them?

How dilated were you on getting to hospital when you've used one at home?

aufaniae Sun 28-Oct-12 22:46:17

I think I thought it did at the time. It probably did help. But not massively.

SquidgersMummy Sun 28-Oct-12 23:41:13

7cm - stick it on EARLY - it can work wonders

Good luck xx

whatsoever Mon 29-Oct-12 08:43:04

5cm on arrival at hospital having used a TENS and paracetamol at home. Took it off to get in the pool.

In hindsight, I'd have used the bath at home & kept the TENS on longer as the pool didn't help me that much as the contractions got stronger whereas I was only up to 4 on the TENS so I think there was probably more relief to be had from it.

BedHog Mon 29-Oct-12 08:48:54

Tens alone from second contraction to about 9cm, then combined it with gas & air until DD was born. Was a shoulder dystocia birth too, so not an easy one. I found during the pushing stage that I didn't want the boost function on, but found it helpful to concentrate on the pulses, which took my mind away from the pain.

BoysBoysBoysAndMe Mon 29-Oct-12 08:49:56

Most people tend to find it quite useful then?

I'' hoping to stay as long as possible at home, but we'll have to see.

Thanks for everyone's input, quite encouraging overall. smile

georgie22 Mon 29-Oct-12 08:56:25

I used my TENS until I was 8cm dilated - that's when I got to hospital. Don't think I took it off until I'd delivered. I'm certain it helped but I didn't have any other analgesia. It was a welcome distraction as I was focused on pressing the boost button at each contraction. I don't think I used it to its full potential as I wasn't certain how far along I was until I got to hospital.

Shellwedance Mon 29-Oct-12 09:00:00

I did 4 hours of not too bad contractions till I remembered the tens. Made things much better, got to birthing centre and only 2-3cm dilated, continued with Tens and it was tough but manageable till 4 hours later when I begged to be examined and was fully dilated! So tens all the way and pushed in the pool with gas and air.

Was my first baby too so definitely recommend.

messtins Mon 29-Oct-12 13:01:51

Got to 10cm with just TENS both times, then G&A for delivery. I think it's one of the things that helps some people and not others but def worth a try. You do need to put it on at the first twinge though, it's all about modifying pain pathways and releasing endorphins, it takes time to build up. Worked better for DS1 where it took 6 hours to dilate than DS2 where it took 90 mins!

BigusBumus Mon 29-Oct-12 13:04:00

With DS2 I used it from first pains to 8cm when I got into the pool and swapped to G&A.

It worked a treat i think.

JessieEssex Mon 29-Oct-12 13:12:50

I definitely didn't put it on early enough, as I found it merely a distraction (although a very welcome one!) rather than actually relieving the pain. I think that the idea is to wear it from the first twinge and then increase the power as the contractions increase in intensity.

Having said that, I got to about 9cm with it, and then had G&A for a bit before lobbing the mouthpiece across the room and going solo!

MoonHare Mon 29-Oct-12 19:44:38

All the way with both previous births, no g&a only TENS plus techniques from JuJu Sundin's book, which are mostly about distraction. I agree with others that it's about distraction rather than actually taking pain away. If you expect to feel pain but be better able to cope with it with the help of TENS then you can't go wrong imo.

Velo Wed 31-Oct-12 16:23:46

I love the TENS. It was the only pain relief that I used. I put it on in early labour when the contractions were getting uncomfortable and took it off 6 hours later after the little one had arrived. It doesn't take the pain away but for me I think that it helped to keep it manageable. You do need to use it properly though - turning it up as the pain increases and using the booster button for the actual contractions. Good luck with your delivery xx

LoveInAColdClimate Wed 31-Oct-12 19:18:51

Until 5cm when I got in the pool, although a few minutes later I was fully dilated and pushing, so it may well have been more as either I dilated 5cm in a matter of minutes or it was mismeasured before!

Badgerina Wed 31-Oct-12 21:26:43

1st labour, I got to 7cm. 2nd labour I got to 10cm.

HorridHeffalumpsWickedWoozles Wed 31-Oct-12 21:53:17

For DD2's birth I had ARM at 3cm, half hour later contractions v painful so put on the Tens which stayed on until 8cm when I took it off before leaping into the pool. It was fantastic, I wish I'd known how fantastic as I didn't use one for DD1's birth which was a hundred times worse than DD2's.

Put it on relatively early so you have time to get used to it and gradually crank it up. The boost button is brilliant!

Good luck with everything smile

Liveinthepresent Wed 31-Oct-12 21:59:35

All the way - loved it - didn't need anything else.
dH gave himself quite a shock when he touched it while still switched on post delivery - think he was surprised how intense it had been. It was on maximum for some time towards the end I believe.
I feel like I couldn't have done it without it.
Get it on early is right advice.

Karoleann Wed 31-Oct-12 22:16:16

DS1 - 8cm (then got in pool - had big abruption with etc etc etc)
DS2 - 9cm then had epidural
DD - just tens machine no epidural. gas and air makes me throw up

Wigeon Thu 01-Nov-12 13:08:04

DD1 - used TENS at home, was 6cm on arrival at hospital, then used G&A and TENS.

DD2 - used TENS at home, was 10cm on arrival at hospital shock, used G&A and the TENS until she was born. She was meant to be a homebirth though, and we only went to hospital as they said that midwife shortages meant there were none available to send out to me and we had to go in.

Loved it. No need to get an expensive one - the cheap second hand Lloyds Pharmacy ones on eBay are fine.

Top tip - make sure your DH knows how to turn the dial up and make sure in advance that it's his job to do that. With both my labours, I was too much in the zone to remember, and I'm sure I could have done with turning the TENS up as the labour progressed.

All the way to fully dilated. I loved it and I was skeptical at first.

Boobz Thu 01-Nov-12 13:14:01

4cm all three times, as then I was allowed the magical G&A (3 homebirths).

Dillydollydaydream Thu 01-Nov-12 13:22:47

With dc1 I used TENS at home until the contractions were quite painful and I felt I wanted more pain relief. I was examined in arrival and I was 8cm dilated and dd arrived about 2.5hrs later after using gad and air alongside the TENS.

With dc2 I used TENS at home again but things were quite quick and ds1 was born in an A&E cubicle as his head started to crown in the carpark.

TENS worked for me but some people really don't get on with it.

JenFrankenstein Thu 01-Nov-12 13:23:05

I put it on at the start and it only came off on day 3 of labour when I was given an epidural as I was exhausted after 3 days of no sleep. DH and MW got a big shock as they tried to take it off while it was still on.

panpipe Thu 01-Nov-12 13:31:15

I put TENS on right at the start and kept it on until my one exam at 8cm (home waterbirth). I'd only been using that and Daisy Birthing breathing/movement techniques until that point then got in the pool. My DH also did the 'take it off without switching it off' thing grin. I think I could probably have used it longer as I'd only got to about half power.

sieglinde Thu 01-Nov-12 13:32:02

Useless with induced labour. It would have been as much use to be strapped to a potable typewriter.

Gas and air makes me hurl, so the TENS was alone on the job for a memorable hour of ow. Get an epidural if induced.

sieglinde Thu 01-Nov-12 13:37:47

A portable typewriter. Though a drinkable typewriter might have been more use than the TENS, which IMHO is a big old placebo.

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