I'm 36 weeks and am thinking about different coping strategies for dealing with labor pain. Is it safe to use a heating pad on my belly during labor, on a low setting? How about heat wraps or hot washcloths? Heat always helps me with menstrual cramps, and although labor pain will be much more severe, I imagine that it will at least make the contractions more bearable. I already know about lamaze breathing & different yoga positions, but I would love to hear any advice about what worked for you, or what you're planning on doing. Even if you had meds, was there something that helped you through the pain beforehand? Thanks!
I don't know about the heating pad on the belly... when I asked my OB if I could use one on my back he said okay, as long as it was on low. Since there is less of you between the pad and baby when it's on your belly, I wouldn't do it.
I'm 36 weeks, too, so I don't have any strategies from previous pregnancies to share with you... Bring on the epidural!!!
The only two things that really helped during my last labour, was heat and massage. At the hospital they heated up nappies in the microwave to use and I used it on both my stomach and back- but i felt the pain mainly in my back anyway so thats where i put it most.
Also along the same lines, in the quite early stages of labour, I had a hot shower at home, and it pretty much stopped the pain completely at that point. Im hoping to stay at home as long as possible this time and manage the pain in a warm bath.
And also massage was really effective. But you need someone committed and patient, my dh gave up after about 3 contractions lol.
I had back labor, ALL CONTRACTIONS, and I brought along a microwavable bean heating sake..it worked wonders (until they got stronger LOL). My hospital wouldn't let me bring in a heating pad so I brought that. But if you are induced like I was, they come strong and fast so I suggest having one handy. The breathing stuff didn't work for me, I opted for an epi, which I only had about three hours before I had my son (11 hours of labor btw). So thats another option. They are super :-D
Thanks so much for your responses. I'll definitely bring some microwavable cloths & heat wraps, but will skip the electrical heating pad (I'm not sure my hospital allows it either). Yes, and my DH will be rubbing my feet and back, if he knows what's good for him. I would like to have an epidural, but my blood pressure is very low and has been known to drop dangerously low, so it looks as if I'll be doing this naturally, whether I like it or not. MJ, I don't think the lamaze breathing will help me much either, as I've already had some pretty painful BH contractions, and all it did was give me dry mouth from all the hee hee heeing!