How to Reduce the Labour Pains while Delivery?
Most of the pregnant women complicate the process of even normal delivery because of their timid nature. They must be told that there is no such danger as even their mother and grandmothers have passed through this stage with fortitude and courage. However, the following methods help in alleviating the labour pains considerably.
- In order that the delivery should proceed normally and the mother should be able to bear the labour pains without too much distress, the help of a doctor, a motivated nurse or a trained and experienced female attendant, such as a midwife, should be made available.
- Hypnotism is also being used these days to reduce the pain. The method has proved very successful in cases of highly susceptible women.
- Recently there have been claims of successful relief of labour pains with the help of acupuncture.
- An injection of pethidine can be used to relax the muscles of the uterus, thus lessening the pain.
- The woman in labour is made to breathe a mixture of nitrous oxide (‘laughing gas’) and oxygen. This reduces sensitivity to the pain. A rubber mask has to be used over the mouth and nose of the woman for administering the gases.
- An epidural injection of an anesthetic can also be used for the purpose. This makes a painless delivery possible.
A specially shaped curved chair is available for facilitating delivery in the sitting position. Beds of this type are also used in the USA.
The Postures which help Reduce the Labour Pains
The descent of the baby is facilitated by assuming the position shown in the figure above, with the knees bent and the arms supporting the weight of the upper torso.
In case the labour pains get acute and are the labour is protracted the husband or a powerful female nurse can help the lady in the way suggested in the picture. The husband should support the upper position of the mother to be as shown at the picture. The presence of husband at this time may otherwise be quite a pain alleviating for the wife’s sagging courage. The husband should cheer her up. In the modern times, many medical centers encourage husband’s presence during delivery.
Sudden Unanticipated Delivery
This contingency arrives when the delivery is planned at home. At times the baby is delivered before the doctor or the nurse arrives or before the mother to be can reach the hospital. In such cases, the following points should be kept in mind by the responsible person of the household.
- There is no need to be worried if the delivery takes place in a normal and natural manner.
- The midwife or the dai must wash her hands thoroughly before touching the genital region.
- As soon as the baby is delivered, its face, mouth, nose, and head should be cleaned gently with a soft cloth.
- The baby should be wrapped up in a clean, soft piece of cloth or a handkerchief, taking care to see that its face is not covered up.
- The umbilical cord should be but with a pair of scissors and the placenta or after-birth permitted to be ejected in a natural course.
- The thighs and the buttocks of the mother should be wiped clean, but touching the vaginal region should be avoided as far as possible.
- Allow the mother complete rest after the delivery. She can be given a warm drink (preferably milk with nutrients like Bournvita, Horlicks etc.) only when she desires to have some.
- In any case, there should not be any panic. After all child delivery is not an out of the world phenomenon. When all these modern gadgets and facilities were not available, even in those times deliveries were conducted without any fuss.
Some Standard Parameters About the Baby
Normal weight of a baby at the time of birth is about 3 Kg. or about 61/2 pounds. Its height is about 50 cms.(20”). The head measures about 32.5 cms. (13”) in circumference. Its normal pulse rate is 120 to 140 per minute, the rate of respiration about 44 per minute, and the B. P. 60 to 80 by 50 (60-80/50). The birth should normally occur in 25 to 287 days from conception. A baby that falls short of any there norms is considered to be a ‘premature’ baby in the medical parlance.
Ordinarily, if labour sets in at full term, there is no reason for interfering with the normal progress of the delivery in any way. If, however, there are any complications, admission to a hospital must be sought immediately.