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Tips for coping with induction

(54 Posts)
RockabillyKitty Mon 07-Jan-13 22:26:46

Anything really - what to do during the waiting? How to make the hospital stay more comfy? Allow family/friends during visiting hours?

I'm booked for Friday when I'll be 40+12 and I'd love to hear from anyone who has been through it - good or bad.

Glup Wed 09-Jan-13 15:11:45

Hmmm. I'm another one who found that their induction kept getting bumped out of the way because of more urgent cases. I went in on the Thursday and didn't actually get induced until Sunday evening.

I had loads of books and magazines etc. but was utterly bored and, as I thought I was going to be taken in any minute, didn't really feel like I could start anything.

When I was actually induced it took 6 hours, but was fine, really.

RockabillyKitty Wed 09-Jan-13 15:17:19

Wow thanks ladies, lots of great advice here, particularly asking for a private room, thanks HearMyRoar and downloading some podcasts, thanks redexpat

Got plenty of mags, ipad for games & music & I never go away without my phone charger. I'm prepared that it might start Friday, or I might be there til Monday! I'm also taking ear plugs if I have a long wait on the ward wink

I do feel much calmer about it now, having not only read the negative experiences, but the positive ones too. And I've spoken to my midwife about the specifics of my hospital and what to expect there.

A common theme seems to be trusting your body. I will really try and channel what's happening to me because, I think a lot of us with first babies (me included) assume the experts know best, and it's not always the case. And I'll try not to be afraid to to speak up for myself or do what I feel is right.

Good point re being happy about making the right decisions at the time brainonastick. Just because I'm being induced doesn't mean I can't try and take control of some things. If the pessary works I'm going to say I want to be as mobile as possible, and ask to go in the pool providing I don't need continual monitoring. Even if I do I can ask for longer leads on the machine, I don't want to be bed bound. If I have to have the drip - total opposite, I'll ask for the epidural to be sited before the drip goes in. I think I'll have had enough by then!

Thanks again chicas! xx

brainonastick Wed 09-Jan-13 15:56:29

Good luck, its exciting times!

Use the time until then to fill the freezer with easy food for the next month, so you can maximise baby snuggling and sleeping time.

designerbaby Wed 09-Jan-13 17:39:39

I'd not necessarily resign yourself to induction on Friday either... A lot happen in 48 hours! I'd strongly recommend acupuncture as something to try... Ask your local NCT to recommend someone...

And take time to consider your options before any interventions are undertaken. Things can snowball pretty quickly, and sometimes they have the clock ticking. Sometimes things take longer to take effect than they might like. But if baby is well and happy, and you're well and happy, there's really no rush, and you can ask them to hold off if you want.

Try not to get impatient. These things can take time, and it's generally better to allow your body to take the time it needs. Try to relax. Sleep as much and as often as you can.

You'll meet your baby soon....

Good luck!


OverWintered Wed 09-Jan-13 19:32:14

As previous posters have said, If I could go back in time I would have insisted on an epidural before going down the Syntocinon (oxytocin) drip route. the pessary seemed ok and got things moving along, but not quickly enough so they put me on the drip. I had gas and air at this stage. It was ok at first, but drip kept being increased and then on the final increase things happened so fast. It was like a long, never ending contraction, things moved very quickly, it was v v painful. Nededed episiotomy too.

A few years later my second labour was also just on gas and air, but a normal delivery. the diff in pain was vast IME. I could handle it this time, it really was a whole world away from the syntocinon experience.

coorong Wed 09-Jan-13 20:38:52


serisously I could bore you with my induction which ended in caesarian, but know we all react differently to the stuff they stick up you and in you - but if you can sit on one of these - they're fun and ease the pain

coorong Wed 09-Jan-13 20:40:45

Agree on the syntonsin - I ended up sucking so much gas/air I started vomitting. The amazing anaesthatist stuck the epidural in between me lurching for the bucket and some incredible painful contractions.

Randomkath Wed 09-Jan-13 21:10:14

I was induced at 38 weeks with twins and was dreading it due to all the horror stories, but my birth experience wasn't that bad at all in the end, and it seems there are just as many other positive stories as traumatic ones, so i'd say try to relax, get as much rest now as possible and don't lose precious sleep worrying about it. You sound pretty organised and well prepared, nothing more you can do but of luck!

I had the pessary at 9am, and at 12 was starting to dilate nicely and only slight niggles. All kicked off after they broke my waters at 3pm. Went into continuous contractions, but got the epidural in quick so didn't have to deal with the intense pain for long. Then progressed well so I didn't need the hormone drip. Born at 11:30 and 11:50pm with forceps and episiotomy. I was so expecting it to take ages it took me a bit by surprise that it was all so straightforward and quick!

MollyNollyNoo Wed 09-Jan-13 21:34:34

I didn't realise until afterwards that it really is the thing to have an epidural with the oxytocin, I didn't ask for one because I got the impression that they didn't have enough staff to administer one in time (I was right, the MW said afterwards that it was just as well that I didn't ask).

On that basis I think it is worth getting your request for an epidural in sooner on the day rather than later.

HearMyRoar Wed 09-Jan-13 21:46:00

Agree about getting the epidural request in early. I made it clear at the start of the process that if it came to the drip I would want an epidural. Then as soon as it was mentioned as a certainty I reminded everyone I wanted one. Annoyingly despite all this it turned out i have a wonky spine and it only partially worked, but even so it was a life saver.

Oh and say all this as someone who had a home birth planned (had the pool and everything) until my bp shot up on my due date, so not an automatic heavy pain relief advocate by any stretch.

dogindisguise Wed 09-Jan-13 21:46:15

The early stages can be a bit boring if you're just on a monitor so take books/scrabble/DVD etc. be prepared for possible quick labour too. I think my time between second lot of prostin gel and becoming fully dilated was about 2.5 hours and I thought it would be much longer.

HeffalumpsAndWoozles Wed 09-Jan-13 21:58:39

I've had one full 'all bells & whistles' induction with DD1 which began on the Saturday night with a pessary and ended in 2.5 hour 'established' labour on monday morning with ARM and syntocin drip, aided by gas & air. The pain was certainly intense but I think that was mostly due to having to be on my back on the bed, and I've heard other people say they were able to move a bit more during theirs so you may or may not have that issue.

DD2 was induced by ARM only so her birth was much nicer as I was allowed in the birth pool. It was also quicker as I went in on Saturday morning, did a lot of waiting around to be examined and then had waters broken just after half 6 in the evening and water birth at 9pm that Saturday night.

The waiting around is boring and nerve wracking, I had my DH with me for as long as visiting hours and child care arrangements would allow. We played cards a lot! For DD2 I was more prepared and just took my kindle and some relaxing music so DH got to go home for the bulk of the waiting around part. Lots of walking, gentle stretching, warm bath if at all possible, and if you can get some sleep in then do!

Good luck, your baby will be in your arms before you know it!

vix206 Wed 09-Jan-13 22:01:20

I'd insist on epidural if you are put on the oxytocin drip. I wasn't able or have one due to no anaesthetist and it was genuinely like one constant contraction for 5 hours. Wouldn't recommend! All they gave me was paracetamol. If I have a 2nd I will be much more assertive!!!

bealos Wed 09-Jan-13 22:54:14

Go home if you can! I didn't find I was bored, more miserable sat on a ward with loads of other women, moaning in different stages of 'latent' labour... felt like cattle!

I'd heard that you can have the pessary and then labour at home for as long as possible til (or if) you want to go into hospital.

I'm 38 weeks now and was induced previously at 42+14. I would wait longer this time and be monitored daily if I go past then. And, as another poster suggested, try acupuncture - probably the only thing I didn't do last time.

Remember, just because you're being induced, doesn't mean you are higher risk than someone who's gone into labour naturally. If you've not had an epidural, you don't need constant monitoring. You can still use the birth pool etc.

bealos Wed 09-Jan-13 22:55:42

**correction - I was induced last time at 40+14. smile

roseum Wed 09-Jan-13 23:06:08

My labour went on a fairly long time, eventually they decided I needed to be on the drip to get things going, as I wasn't dilating very fast. Having heard that the drip can make things very painful - I asked for and got an epidural - v good decision as things turned complicated in the end (nothing to do with the induction - foetal distress due to PFB having tied knots in his umbilical cord). The gas and air just made me sick (was v disappointed at that, as some people describe lovely trippy time on G&A).
Anyway - TENS machine was amazing for the 36 or so hours I was in first stage labour, before the drip, and I know people who started with a pessary induction who also used a TENS machine successfully. If you do use one, make sure you have plenty of the right batteries (I hired my TENS machine, and they sent a spare battery, but I obviously hammered through them - DH had to make a midnight run to the petrol station to get more).
Once labour started, I couldn't bear to eat, at all (or drink), or have anyone eating near me, or any smelly food on their breath, so make sure you are well hydrated and nourished before-hand, in case you are the same (bring snacks otherwise, for you and DP, and cash and cards in case you have to buy more in the hospital).

3smellysocks Wed 09-Jan-13 23:53:18

I think being induced by gel etc can be very normal labor wise. You can just wonder about etc.

My first vaginal birth was induced by drip though and was told to expect a 10 hour labor. I was determined not to have a epidural but gave in after two and a half hours of pain. Annoyingly enough I gave birth to my son half an hour later. I really wouldn't have bothered with the epidural if i'd have known birth was that close.

Basically I went in totally not in labor, they put me on the drip and it was like going from zero to 100 miles per hour with in seconds. At one point they turned up the drip so the birth was faster! It was quite nice to have my son in my arms so quickly and after such a short labor but it hurt like nothing I have ever known.

My cousin also had a drip induction but had a nicer longer birth of 10 hours. I think she was in early labor when they put the drip in and she seemed to manage really well.

My second vaginal birth was totally normal and amazing. No drips and so instead there was a steady build of of endorphins. It only lasted 3 hours but was really easy.

MoetEtPantsOn Thu 10-Jan-13 07:52:16

I was induced for both of mine. Had pessaries and sleeping pill last thing at night, let DH go home, slept brilliantly, another pessary in morning and kicked off eventually. We watched a box set of a DVD series we both wanted to see the next day to pass the time. Good when it got more painful too.

Both my births were relatively good. Had epidurals, which were wonderful and quite big babies with lots of pushing (an hour both times) but nothing to worry about. Good luck.

Ps was especially good being induced second time around on due date as helped sort out childcare for older child!

SolidGoldFrankensteinandmurgh Thu 10-Jan-13 12:36:11

Was induced at 40+5 due to high blood pressure; went in to hospital on the Thursday morning and hung around all day due to more urgent cases overtaking me (My tip, which is of course useless to the OP, is don't get up the duff over Xmas as your DC will be born in late September, along with all the other DCs concieved during the festive season, and the labour ward will be like Piccadilly Circus). My friend who was going to be one birthing partner was with me most of the day and my mum, who was going to be the other, was at home with me phoning her every two hours or so going 'No, they've not given me anything yet. Have your lunch... No, have your dinner, don't worry...' and at about 10pm I suggested she go to bed and I'd call her in the morning. Mum, having none of it, insisted she was coming in to see me so I asked her to bring me the book I'd left on the bedside table. She arrived just as the nurse was sending K, my mate, home so there were a few words said... Anyway, left to myself (in a private room, which was OK) I went to bed, a doctor came in for another BP check and went, ooh, don't know, maybe we'd better induce you now. I said that as both my birth partners had just been sent home, they could bloody well wait till the morning and I promised not to die in the night.

First pessary at 6am, mum and K arrived at about 9ish, not much happened till lunchtime. I got strapped to the bed for the monitor and got very fed up after an hour of it, then they gave me another dose of the gel and let me know that as long as I kept the monitor pads in place I could stand up and walk round my bed if I wanted. Contractions got going then, and after an hour or two I asked for gas and air. I got sick after a few minutes but persevered, and had a rather spectacular hallucinogenic trip until about 7pm when I leapt off the bed saying I wanted the loo, and my waters went all over the floor blush. So they hurtled me down to the delivery room, all got a bit blurry for a while. I do remember someone saying that maybe it would have to be a c-section after all, and protesting, and then they gave me a catheter and shortly after that, out shot DS.

Actually, one thing I would say, OP, is that sometimes being induced can make it a bit harder to BF, so if that's what you want to do, try to get extra BF support.
GOod luck, anyway.

cuggles Thu 10-Jan-13 12:53:38

I was induced with DC2 and you might find like me that there is no wait. I was 38 weeks and waters went but no labour so after 36 hrs or so I was induced. They inserted the pessary thing and I was told I would be going to the labour ward for up to 6 hrs to see what happened but from insertion to birth = 56 mins. I would say it was a bit more shocking than my waterbirth first time round as so quick but had gas only for birth so noticed no difference pain wise and in terms of being relaxed I was terrified about induction and had planned a home water birth so wasn't exactly going with the flow. You just never know what might happen...good luck!

Rupeomatic Thu 10-Jan-13 15:22:50

Just to add my twopenneth - I was induced with all three of mine - all around 2 weeks over due date. Each experience was different and took varying amounts of time. No epidural for me - I found pethidine with gas and air was good enough (but I had heard too many bad experiences about epidurals so was too scared to have one - if you want one, have one and ask early!).

I would agree that it can actually be pretty boring hanging around at the hospital - and its hard to concentrate on anything because you are waiting for your body to 'do something' - be prepared in case it doesn't. Playing cards are great - Uno also fab if people come to visit. Also, don't be afraid to send your DP home for a while if you are hanging around waiting (unless you live a long way from where you are having the baby). I found when my DH was bored it really irritated me, cos I was bored too and I couldn't be bothered to worry about him grin

thefudgeling Thu 10-Jan-13 16:12:54

I was induced as my waters broke and had meconium in, so was put on the syntocin(?sp) drip asap. Anyway, just wanted to say, even on 2 drips and with a monitior strapped to me, I was allowed to stand up and move around fo most of the early contranctions and it really helped with the pain and woth moving things along a bit. 1st midwife wouldn't let me but when she went home the next one was much nicer. So do argue the toss if they say you have to lie down the whole time.

For the pushing, however, I was on my side on the bed. Totally whacked out on pethidine and gas and air. Don't tihnk I could have stood up if I tried. Pushing ws really quick though (20 minutes), which was great!

Tailtwister Thu 10-Jan-13 18:45:40

I was induced at 37 weeks with DS, initially due to OC but then my waters broke and I didn't go into labour naturally.

They tried a pessary first to soften the cervix, but that didn't work so they went onto a syntocin drip. I ended up on a very high does (nothing happened for ages) and DS1 was born around 18 hours later.

I would go prepared for the long haul. Books, magazines and lots of snacks. We had a few different bags which we left in the car and DH went to get as as when needed. In the end it was more for his comfort than mine, as I didn't really want anything once the drip was started. It's good to be prepared though!

Lintilla Thu 10-Jan-13 20:09:36

I was induced at 40+12 but nothing happened for 4 days - nothing. I had lots of the gel stuff but there was nothing doing so I ended up having a CS.

But I just wanted to say that before all this I had wanted an absolutely natural birth, in a local birthing centre, in a pool with just gas and air but having to be induced changed all this. I thought I could still try to labour quite naturally and move around. The reality was that nothing that I had wanted before happened and the two things I said I never, ever wanted were a) an epidural because I hate needles and b) a cesarian and then I ended up with both.

But actually, my cs ended up being elective and it was really calm and lovely. I told the midwives that I really wanted skin to skin and they gave DD straight to me to put under my gown, took her away to be cleaned up and then put her straight back. The surgeon held her up facing me so I was the first one to see her and see what she was.

In the end I didn't give a stuff how she got there, the important thing was that she was there.

Oh, and I would second having a few different bags if you are in for the long haul. I had 2 hospital bags, one for during with snacks, amusements, books etc and one for afterwards with clean night things, baby stuff, etc.

OneMoreGo Thu 10-Jan-13 23:11:26

If I was induced again I would take my own pillow and an ipod. And some bottles of water that have been frozen and can melt slowly as I got very hot (hospitals are fecking boiling) and craved iced water.
And I would have an epidural if they use a drip to move things along, as that ratcheted up the pain something shocking. It can go from nothing to excruciating v fast with the drip so bear that in mind.

Reminding yourself that it will pass and you will be home with your beautiful baby very soon is also good smile

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