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Induction - how bad is it?

(43 Posts)
Blondie89 Sat 22-Aug-09 14:29:46

Hi everyone.
I'm 40+9 and booked in to be induced on Wednesday.
Was wondering if anyone has any tips or advice on how to deal with being induced? Anything you wish you'd been told?
I'm bricking myself at the thought of it.
Trying (& failing) to keep calm.
Any advice would be wildly appreciated

Pandoraneedsbugs Sat 22-Aug-09 14:36:18

Errm I found it uncomfortable and intrusive
I remember an internal 'look see' followed by a midwife fiddling about - not very nice tbh

Also as induction tends to speed things up (esp if baby is ready to pop anyway it can make labour quicker) - as I result I didnt get a chance to get used to the pain, pretty major labour pains within an hour

Based on my experience make sure someone is with you to help argue your opinions - I was on my own at the wrong moment and got talked into things by a bossy midwife!

Hopefully you will go into labour naturally before then


captainpeacock Sat 22-Aug-09 14:44:49

I didn't find it any problem at all. I had had an awful first birth where I had gone into labour naturally, but the induction was fine 4.5 hours from start to finish. Yes it was painful, but then giving birth is and it was better because it was over in a relatively short space of time. Good luck.

EyeballsintheSky Sat 22-Aug-09 14:56:59

It's ok. I was more terrified of going into hospital tbh. Had told myself throughout pg that I would be out in 6 hours but I had to go in night before and spent 4 days in (that was for other reasons)

I only had three lots of prostin gel and no other intervention at all so was quite lucky. It is uncomfortable (and had several witchy mws) but you know it'll be over soon so you can deal with it.

You'll be fine. I am the world's biggest wimp and I was ok. Good luck x

weegiemum Sat 22-Aug-09 15:00:00

I was induced at 37 weeks with dd2 (dc3) as I had some health issues.

It took 12 hours - had my pessary at 6am, she was born at 6.30 pm.

Tips - it does hurt. take pain releif if you need it!

- if you are being induced by pessary/gel, try to stay lying down for a couple of hours after you get it to let it work on your cervix. I went back to sleep for 2.5 hours (old hand!) and it was contractions that woke me up.

- keep moving around. Midwives said I had such a good labour under induction as I spent almost all the time on my feet. Gravity makes a difference!

- don't panic , do keep calm. I found it useful to visulaise my baby, see her coming out (though I didn't knwo she was a she!), see myself holding her! You don't say if thei sis your first, which I think makes it more difficult!

cairns Sat 22-Aug-09 15:47:55

I was induced at 40+10 with DS2 and it was a lot better than I expected. I had a natiral labour with DS1, so wasn;t looking forward to being induced with DS2.

I had two lots of prostin gel, which worked 'ripening'. My contractions then started which were reasonably easy to handle. They didn;t want to given me a 3rd dose of gel as I was having contractions and they don't want to overstimulate the uterus. I was checked and found to be 4cm dilated, the rest of the labour only took 3 hours, was natural and I only needed G&A(no need for waters to be broken or anything)

Advice would be to rest as much as possible after having the prostin. It is only used to ripen the cervix but can cause contractions. Mine started (mild contractions), then stopped, then started again when the 2nd dose was inserted. You will need your energy for established labour which is sure to follow.

On a positive, my hospital does not allow you to leave once the prostin has been inserted and will constantly monitor babies heartbeat and if you are experiencing contractions. The antenatal ward I was in was very comfy, DH could stay with me all day and we avoided having the stress of 'when to travel to hospital and will there be a bed' , which happens with the hospital I was using. I felt relaxed, looked after and properly monitored. It was a far better experience than with DS1.

FrameyMcFrame Sat 22-Aug-09 18:50:46

try to stick with the prostin gel or pessary and avoid the drip if at all poss. the prostins are much more gentle and more like a normal labour feel, the syntoxin drip will take you fom zero to 100% which can be difficult to deal with.
If this is your first baby they will give you the gel or pessary first anyway but there is no reason why you shouldn't go into a normal labour after that without the need for the drip. Hope that makes sense, I found it helpful to find out about my local hospital's induction policy before the day then I knew their guidelines and what to expect. It is different if it is not your first baby as they will go straight for ARM (artificial rupture of membranes) if your cervix is soft (which is what I wanted to avoid).

Anyway, you may well start off before then, I went into labour while sitting waiting to be induced with a load of other couples. The midwife just came in to tell us all that nobody would be induced that day as they had no midwives left! my contractions started and I was 4cm dilated already!

Good luck whatever happens!

l39 Sat 22-Aug-09 20:33:43

I found induced labour (pessary at night, drip midmorning of next day) much less painful than spontaneous labour (had gas and air. Had both pethidine and gas and air with spontaneous labour and was in much more pain.) I do know that it works the other way for most people but there is at least hope it will be bearable even if you end up with a drip! My induced labour was very fast, an hour and a quarter from starting contractions with the drip.

[There were some mild to moderate pains after I'd had the pessary. I'd been warned I might feel period-type pains, and not to mistake them for contractions. They went away after only about half an hour.]

NumptyMum Sat 22-Aug-09 20:45:17

Natural labours can be fast, as well as induced ones - I had a friend whose labour took around 4 hours (her first baby too!). So yes, it may be more intense, but that's not to say it will be very different. See if you can keep moving, use a birthing ball etc, and also get the help of the midwife (I found I couldn't tell when I was getting a contraction, so kept mistiming taking the gas and air - my first midwife was really helpful and told me just when to breathe in). If you do go onto the drip, you'll get a cannula in your hand/arm, but you'll still be able to move about. Do expect that you will be in a more 'medical' environment - I found music a good distraction, it's harder to keep relaxed!

StewieGriffinsMom Sat 22-Aug-09 21:03:45

Message withdrawn

K75 Sat 22-Aug-09 21:04:16

Sorry to gatecrash but good to hear - at 40 + 7 never thought I would even have to read about this (DD1 was 40+3 and v easy).

Was hoping for an easy home birth...fingers crossed there are a few days left...

LemonTea Sat 22-Aug-09 21:41:44

I was induced at 40+14 with my DS (1st baby).
I was put on a drip at 9.30 pm, after having another sweep earlier on in the afternoon.

Once the drip was in place, the contractions started VERY quickly. I think the worst thing about beinf induced is that there is no build up to the pain. It's just straight away to full on contractions.
I lasted for a while on gas and air, then had morphine for the rest of the labour.
On the plus side, my DS was born at 2.30, so only 5 hoursin total.

My main gripe was that I felt so out of control with everything. As Numptymum said, it's far more medical - so I had reduced mobility (although could stand). Basically it wasn't the birth I wanted, however I had no other experience of how it could be.

One thing I would really think about is the pain relief you want. My community midwife was really angry I hadn't been offered an epidural before I was induced; and when I asked for one after the morphine was wearing off, I couldn't have one 'as you're 4th in the line and by the time we get round to you, it'll all be over' hmm

I would second that music helps, also try a TENS. Might do bugger all, but it certainly won't do any harm either.

Good luck.

NumptyMum Sat 22-Aug-09 21:59:48

I used a TENS... it helped distract, but my main pains were low down in the front and the TENS was low on my back. The midwife gave me hot packs to use which helped a bit.

However at one point I was adjusting the TENS and my fingers slipped - that was worse than the contractions!!!

On the whole I think the TENS did help. I think you need to use it early, before you notice the contractions too much, so that the effect builds up.

If you're wanting to avoid drugs, it's possible. I managed on gas & air and TENS; I did start asking about epidural but was at the pushing stage by then.

K75 Sat 22-Aug-09 22:04:20

One question: how quickly did you all escape after? I had a 3 hour labour with my first and was home the same day. Just wondering if the induction meant you had to stay over. Thanks.

skybright Sat 22-Aug-09 22:04:29

I was induced with my first baby at 41 weeks and 3 days. I did not find it uncomfortable and the labour was fine not to intense,had an 8lb 6oz girl about eight hours later. I am unsure of the rules these days but when i had her you were still able to use the birthing pool if you were induced,which i did for a few hours.

I only needed one dose of gel,i do think it makes a difference if your body is pretty much ready for labour anyway.

In comparison to my other two labours it was fine,my worst one was spontanious and very short.

Good luck.

NumptyMum Sat 22-Aug-09 22:07:25

Just a thought - with normal childbirth, keeping calm and relaxed is really important as it helps the correct muscles do the job and not fight against the muscles that are tensing. In a medical environment, such as you can have with induction (on the drip, anyway), it's harder to keep calm and relaxed. So I'm wondering whether having something like a pillowcase from home, that you can clutch/smell, might help you feel more able to relax, if you had that and music to listen to? And remind your birth partner to keep helping you relax, lower your shoulders and loosen your lips etc. If you're on gas & air, you'll also probably want lots of water - I found it made my throat dry and I sounded like bride of dracula.

FairyMum Sat 22-Aug-09 22:13:40

Really bad and nearly always end in c-section I think. I would opt for elective c-section if you can.

warthog Sat 22-Aug-09 22:17:44

i was induced with a syntocinon drip. they tried to keep it quite strong (90 i think) and my dh made them turn it down to 60 as i wasn't having a break between contractions. you can do that you know - make them turn it down.

i didn't think it was that bad compared to my second labour which was natural.

just follow the guidelines for normal births, use your tens machine and gas and air and ask for an epidural when you feel it's too much.

you don't have to let them do an internal exam either if you don't want although at some stage they probably will need to.

a lot of pain control is in your mind. if you tell yourself it's not that bad, think of nice things like waves on a beach (calming things) and control your breathing you'll find it easier.

good luck and come back and tell us about it! grin

warthog Sat 22-Aug-09 22:18:28

FairyMum, i really don't think that's true, and neither do i think that's helpful for the op!!

FairyMum Sat 22-Aug-09 22:20:53

I don't know anyone who has had a good experience after an induction Warthdog. Helpful? Well, my advice is to go for an elective c-section. It is very likely to end up being a c-section anyway, so why not save yourself the agony. feel free to ignore my opinion!

warthog Sat 22-Aug-09 22:26:19

well, no-one else on this thread had a cs after being induced. and no-one i know in rl either.

OP - keep moving around even though they hook you up to the machines. it speeds things along.

NumptyMum Sat 22-Aug-09 22:31:20

I think if your body is nearly ready for birth, induction can just set it off. Ask for a sweep beforehand, and also ask them to examine you before induction. There is something called a 'bishops score', which I struggled to understand last time but which gives an indication of likely success of induction. I think EARLY induction, for medical reasons, is perhaps more problematic, the only person I know who had this did have a C Section.

But induction doesn't have to lead to a C Section. I didn't have one, neither did the couple who came in at the same time - she just required a couple of pessaries. I only went onto the drip because my waters had already broken, it may be that I would have been OK with pessaries too. And I wouldn't say that my experience was bad - natural labour can be just as problematic, or not.

Also, you don't have to be induced. You can ask for monitoring - this is what I did. In my case, the scan showed that I had low amniotic fluid, hence the induction. But you can hold off! You can call the NCT helpline for advice re this. 0300 33 00 772 from 10am to 8pm, Monday to Friday.

hf128219 Sat 22-Aug-09 22:31:49

I was induced at exactly 41 weeks for social reasons. Dh was back from Afghnistan.

It was fine! Although I have nothing to compate it to as it was first baby! Good luck.

hatcam Sat 22-Aug-09 22:33:16

I was induced at 40 + 14 just by having my waters broken, which is common practice as a first step if the cervix is ready. I was told that they would break my waters and I would need no extra monitoring, but if I wasn't having regular contractions or if there was any meconium in the waters then I would have to go to the labour ward for constant monitoring and/or pessaries/gels.

It didn't hurt, and 56 mins later I had a son! It was a very intense labour but it's never going to be a barrel of laughs let's face it. I was encouraged to move around the whole time (spent the first 15 mins walking up and down the stairs) and gave birth in a midwife led unit.

Be calm, be calm, be calm - by Wednesday it'll all be done and dusted!

readyfornumber2and3 Sat 22-Aug-09 22:49:19

I was induced at 36+6 with my twins (after a natural labour with DS1) and it was great!

I had my waters broke but nothing happened so they started the drip and it took nearly 2 hours for the contractions to start, but once they finally started it took 47 minutes to have both babies with just gas and air smile

The contractions were actually less intense than with DS1 and I never felt out of control.

Just make sure that they explain everything and let them know (and your birth partner) know what you will and wont except (I was very anti epidural for example) and enjoy meeting your little one grin

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