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The logistics of perineal massage

(15 Posts)
Pisghetti Mon 09-Feb-15 11:32:41

No such thing as TMI on the pregnancy board right?

I'm now at a stage in pregnancy where perineal massage is recommended. I didn't have stitches after my first birth and would like to do what I can to avoid them this time around too.

The only problem I have is how exactly I can reach my perineum with a large bump in the way.... Any position I can find is only manageable for short amounts of time. Anyone out there found an easier way of doing it? I don't want to have to resort to strategically manipulated back scratchers....

TouchPauseEngage Mon 09-Feb-15 13:11:10

No idea but I'm watching with interest as my friend said the only way she could have managed was with her DH doing it and there is no bloody way I'm going down that route!

A midwife friend recommended something called epino. which is a sort of balloon you insert but they are £100 and understandably you can't get them cheap on ebay grin

christinarossetti Mon 09-Feb-15 13:17:33

I cringed when a neighbour said 'We've been doing perineal massage". I couldn't quite cope with my dp being involved either.

I found sitting on the side of the bath the easiest position. You don't have to do it for ages - short amounts of time sounds fine.

Pisghetti Mon 09-Feb-15 13:46:18

Well I did get DP involved and we had possibly the most awkward 5 minutes of our lives. I fear my sex life post birth may never recover if we start to associate intimate touching with that experience....

I'll give the bath a go. Could do with a lock really. If DS walks in on me he may never recover.

I'm at work so I'd better not google epino!

TouchPauseEngage Wed 11-Feb-15 20:08:25

Op I've just seen this and howled! Sorry! grin

Hope the bath thing works out!

ambientolf Wed 11-Feb-15 20:54:04

Wait... what is this massaging? I will have to do some Googling hmm

Schoolaroundthecorner Wed 11-Feb-15 20:57:07

Stand beside bed, one leg up on bed (or something not as high if uncomfortable) and avoid bump by going around the back through your legs.

Schoolaroundthecorner Wed 11-Feb-15 21:00:25

Make sure you are well balanced though, don't want to topple over doing it!

2015isgoingtobeBIG Wed 11-Feb-15 21:52:05

I googled it and found this advice sheet complete with one of the most frightening images I think I've ever seen......two thumbs inside my foof!!!

I had NEVER heard of this until MN and now I feel traumatised!

pinkie87 Wed 11-Feb-15 22:16:37

Oh dear Lord. Also never heard of this but thanks for the informative brochure 2015!! I am in a state of pure cringe. This pregnancy lark really does make you lose every last inch of dignity!

TouchPauseEngage Thu 12-Feb-15 08:07:22

I had never heard of it either until the midwife friend I mentioned above started discussing epinos AND took my address so she could send me a box of something called Elastilabia shock

Littlecaf Thu 12-Feb-15 09:00:40

Get everything you need handy.... Almond oil etc
Lie on the bed on a towel
prop your back up on at least 3 pillows
prop mirror up in front of you
Feet together under your bum
Open legs like you do when having a smear

Pisghetti Thu 12-Feb-15 11:30:33

If you think that leaflet is bad, avoid YouTube shock

TouchPauseEngage is actually a very appropriate name for this discussion!

I'd not heard of perineal massage until recently. My NHS trust makes you navigate past a guide before you can find contact details for antenatal services which is where I can across it. I have heard of third and fourth degree tears though and although I was lucky with my first, that was a long time ago and the thought of significant trauma to the area scares me silly. Leg-on-the-bath has yielded the most success so far. I found lying down quite a stretch (scuse the pun)

christinarossetti Thu 12-Feb-15 12:19:37

I gave the mirror a miss...grin

In all seriousness, there is research which shows that PM reduces incidents of tearing, especially in women over 35.

It also takes some of the unexpected out of the crowning sensation, as it's already familiar.

I used it with both of mine and didn't have so much as a graze

InFrance2014 Thu 12-Feb-15 12:57:40

Had my first in France recently, as part of antenatal classes here perineal massage is routinely advised, and also that your partner helps you out. You can buy special oils made by Weleda for it (although almond oil is fine).

Really it's not so gross, and your partner will likely be seeing you at a much less flattering angle than this during birth anyway...

I found it very helpful to know what the feeling of crowning would be like, and learn how to breathe through it. And also to know just how much it is possible to stretch down there without drastic amounts of pain, I really was less frightened after 3 weeks of daily sessions. I combined it with relaxing music and essential oil (to smell, not use down there!), so it was more like some kind of really hardcore yoga we were trying to learn together than something embarassing- although the first time it was pretty odd wink
I'm sure it helped during the labour, as I didn't find the crowning that bad, the contractions during pushing were more painful.

If anyone is interested, we used the Weleda leaflet that was given to us during antenatal classes, it has several different techniques to use together. I'm sure you could adjust them to use by yourself if needed- but persevere with partner!
Link to downloadable pdf

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