Advanced search

Got questions about giving birth? Know what to expect and when to expect it, with the Mumsnet Pregnancy Calendar.

So if you have a VB with gas and air as the only form of pain relief...

(32 Posts)
ColumboWearsControlPants Wed 10-Sep-08 19:38:31

...does that mean you can honestly say you had a drug free birth, or say that you had no pain relief?

Also, another question: I had gas and air until the point of transitioning and was fully dilated when I had to have an epidural and had a forceps delivery - having got to that point, had I been able to have a non assisted birth, would the pain have increased by loads? Several people have said that once you get to that stage you can focus on the pushing etc and the pain is manageable or at least feels "productive".

Just curious as thinking of TTC again and these things do pop into ones mind.

misdee Wed 10-Sep-08 19:40:01

no idea. but love gas and air grin

lulumama Wed 10-Sep-08 19:42:31

i don;t think it matters ! i don;t consider g&A a drug..grin it is certainly not a hardcore opiate pain reliever

the pain of the second stage is IME and IMO different to that of the first stage. it is a productive and positive pain and if you work with your body, the feeling of pushing can be really quite satisfying. the pain is different , more of a pressure than a pain IME.

second birth likely to be a lot more straightforward than the first. always good to work through any issues from one birth before embarking on another

TheFallenMadonna Wed 10-Sep-08 19:47:20

That happened to me - a spinal for the forceps delivery with ds, dd with gas and air. But I found the pain of the final push as it were quite overwhelming. I was not prepared for it. Obviously nice to get the baby out in a less dranatic fashion though smile

Sorry - is that unhelpful?

funnypeculiar Wed 10-Sep-08 19:48:00

On the first one - dunno ito technicalities - not sure if i feel it matters hugely (I had one birth with G&A and one birth where I forgot about pain relief until the stitches grin)

Ito pain levels, I'd say that the stage just before pushing is the hardest ito managing the pain - I would agree that once you're pushing you feel the end is in sight, & that the focus is different.

chisigirl Wed 10-Sep-08 19:50:07

what misdee said. that stuff is great. grin

funnypeculiar Wed 10-Sep-08 19:50:48

Oh, and also agree with misdee - I only got pg the second time for the G&A smile

Gorgeoushoney1980 Wed 10-Sep-08 19:50:56

dunno. but thats all I had with my second baby who was born at home.

g&a really good as you concentrate on your breathing which really helps in the final stages of labour.

Elmosgirl Wed 10-Sep-08 19:52:33

I had just gas and air both times, one of them was a forceps delivery (ouch), second was lovely. Wouldn't say i had a drug free birth because I didn't I used gas and air as pain relief

I found with my second (no forceps) that when I was pushing I couldn't co-ordinate pushing and using the gas and air so had to do without, was desperate to use it but just couldn't get the timings right

PillockOfTheCommunity Wed 10-Sep-08 19:57:48

I had an epidural with my first, then with the second just gas and air. I didn't feel I needed the g&a until I was almost fully dilated and at the point of giving birth I was saying I wished I'd had an epidural cos it hurt lots now grin

So no, IME the pain doesn't get easier, but that's just my experience. 2nd labour was much easier in general though

francagoestohollywood Wed 10-Sep-08 19:58:13

First birth: I found the pain of the pushing stage wild, unbearable, scary etc

2nd birth: I was more "in control" and labouring on all fours, which is a great position, IMO. It was a great experience and the pushing stage was very short. But def painful.

miamla Wed 10-Sep-08 19:59:27

i just had g&a but it was stolen from me when it was time to push! the theory being that it meant i was concentrating more on pushing than the g&a. it seemed to work, DS born v soon after!
the pushing bit wasn't painful, it was more an overwelming urge for me to push than anything else

maretta Wed 10-Sep-08 20:04:08

I don't know, but often when people say they had no pain relief, they mean that they had gas and air.

I have given birth with gas and air and with nothing at all and like you suggest, I find that the worst bit is over by the time you start to push.

belgo Wed 10-Sep-08 20:04:20

Colombo - regarding your second question about the second stage of labour, I found that pushing made the pain of contractions disappear completely, so I actually had a pain free second stage of labour with dd1 (after 12 hours of first stage labour mind you!)- but the crowning of the head was of course very painful, a burning sensation, but that sensation was very brief.

I don't know about gas and air, it's not used during labour in Belgium so I didn't have it.

DeirdreD Wed 10-Sep-08 20:05:52

First birth: had an epidural which they let wear off and then found the pushing stage really really painful, scary and hard to manage - 50 minutes and I was convinced he was never coming out.

Second birth; no pain relief at all (an unplanned home birth) contractions were bad, transition which I felt much more than the first time around was truly awful and scary, but the pushing was actually almost a relief. Transition seemed way worse and more intense but maybe because it was shorter and more effective.. once I was through transition it was only 3 to 4 pushes to get him out. While it really hurt my body also knew as soon as he was out it would be better and so each push was painful but relieving at the same time.

boogeek Wed 10-Sep-08 20:07:07

I don't think it is drug-free or no pain relief, but unless you are a very competitive mummy group, who cares?
(I had it for my second - the midwife was very keen on it - swore blind it was doing nothing for me, then panicked like crazy when I dropped the mouthpiece. If nothing else it was something to focus on!)

supertuesday Wed 10-Sep-08 20:08:01

IME,the 2nd stage is more painful but also easier if that makes sense.
For me the contractions right at the end of the 1st stage, just before I started pushing were uncontrollable and scary. When pushing they hurt more but I felt far more in control and they felt productive as I could feel baby moving down birth canal.

Crowning felt like I was being torn in two especially that last contraction before the birth but is over very quickly.

OMaLittle Wed 10-Sep-08 20:13:14

DD1 got to transition and 2 hours of (fruitless, OP) pushing with nothing (no G&A as puked loads), then synto (OW), then G&A, then spinal, ventouse, forceps etc. Found contractions bearable with TENS.

DD2 had 36 hours of totally painless contractions, went to bed Sunday night, woke at 4am thinking 'hmm, little more painful', woke DH at 5 saying 'do you think this is it?', got to hospital at 5.40, DD2 out at 6.05. Honestly stitches and afterpains were worse than labour. It genuinely didn't hurt much. Had no idea I'd torn. I was really nervous about crowning etc. too having never experienced it, but my second birth was honestly and truly the most extraordinarily wonderful experience. I can't think about it without getting tears of joy and awe in my eyes.

Shame, then, the subsequent five months have entirely put me off having any more children EVER wink.

RhinestoneCowgirl Wed 10-Sep-08 20:13:15

My experience was similar to belgo's - don't remember second stage being painful as such, apart from crowning. In fact the MWs kept telling me to push with the contractions, but I couldn't really feel them in some way, most odd.

Contractions before going into transition were pretty much on top of each other and v painful (didn't ask for G&A as I was paranoid that the MW hadn't brought any... even tho I clearly saw her getting the cylinder out hmm).

ColumboWearsControlPants Wed 10-Sep-08 20:13:47

The first question was because a few people I know people say they had a natural drug free birth when they had G&A. I guess they mean no epi and no opiates then.

Second question because I'm a wuss and a chicken. So much so that in the first stages of labour at home I went and got my birth plan and crossed out where I'd written "no epidural". But hoping to manage on just G&A this time.

belgo Wed 10-Sep-08 20:16:40

Colombo - friends in England assume that when I say I had a drug free birth, that I had G&A. They are really quite surprised when I say that G&A isn't used in Belgium, neither is pethidine. It really is epidural or nothing.

Rhinestone - I never expected the pain to disappear during the second stage! It was a huge relief.

Ellbell Wed 10-Sep-08 20:19:21

I think that, as with everything to do with birth/labour, it depends on the individual. I found the first stage a doddle but dd got a bit stuck at the second stage and I was pushing away for ages (too much horse-riding gives you a perineum of steel apparently!?) so that was definitely more painful. Everyone says that the pushing stage is less painful once you've given birth once, but I wouldn't know about that cos dd1 was an elective section so dd2 was my first and only experience of pushing.

I tend to think of myself as not having used pain-relief although I used TENS and had a few (3 or 4) puffs of G&A. It doesn't really matter, though. For me I just knew that I didn't want opiates and I'd ruled out an epidural because of the previous c-section, so that was that.

Good luck!

RhinestoneCowgirl Wed 10-Sep-08 20:24:04

Columbo - you may find you have a completely different labour experience this time round. And it's not about being a wuss about pain relief, those options are there if you need them, just have to take it one contraction at a time.

I have put in an order for a much quicker labour for this time round wink(DC2 due in Dec) as was so knackered last time that I could barely hold DS.

lauraloola Wed 10-Sep-08 20:36:53

I only had gas and air - It was the best thing ever!!! I wanted an epidural before I went into labour but it was too quick - 2 hours. I am so glad I only had gas and air.

boogeek Wed 10-Sep-08 20:37:22

People all mean their own thing - I have one friend who describes any VB as "natural".
I had DD1 in Japan and they are epidural or nothing too - and you can only get one of them in office hours!
(But I went to a hippy midwife and had a lovely pool and everything was lovely.)

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: