Common Labor Fears Every Mom Has
We have seen it before in movies, read it in books, heard from other moms giving birth; it is not quick and easy. Labor is hard work and can be incredibly painful. There are a million things that can happen, and if you have given birth before, there might have been more complications than today.
We have all heard of things that can happen during pregnancy and labor that seem incredibly scary. What if the baby is in the wrong position? What if I can’t take the pain? What if I have to give birth in the car cause I can’t get to the hospital fast enough? What if my water breaks at an event or when I’m out shopping?
There are many fears and things to worry about, and childbirth isn’t a piece of cake. But it is astonishing what the female body can do and go through when having a baby. Your body is equipped with all the things it needs to deliver the baby safely and soundly, but it is understandable to be scared, especially if it is your first baby.
What if I need a c-section?
In some cases, for example, if the baby isn’t in the proper position or there might be any risk in delivering the baby vaginally, your doctor might advise you to have a c-section. This is basically getting the baby out through your abdomen. The surgery doesn’t take too long, but the healing process does. Good news: every 3rd woman in the United States of America gets a c-section, so there is no need to be scared of the surgery as many women have gone through it before.
There are ways to speed up the healing process: by wearing a compression garment, resting, drinking enough water, doing light stretches, etc. With these strategies, you will be on your feet sooner than you think. It’s not the traditional way, but you will not feel any pain while having the surgery, and it can also be planned. There are women that choose to have a c-section because of precisely those factors.
What if the pain is too much?
Ah, yes. You might think about this often while you are pregnant. How bad is the pain going to be? Maybe you have heard horror stories online or from your friends. The good news is your body makes you remember the pain of childbirth after delivery as less severe. That’s an evolutionary trick to make you want to have another kid. See, our body is smart.
But there are actual ways to reduce the pain while in labor. For example, with medication, an epidural will help you if you want it. An excellent way to prepare for the process is to watch videos, read about it and ask other women about it; you can always choose not to go through that much pain and ask for medication.
The epidural needle is enormous!
The epidural needle is indeed 4 inches long. But before it even reaches you, the area is numbed, and you won’t feel a lot when the needle is injected. There might be a little pressure, but that’s it. You won’t feel any pain, and it will be over sooner than you think. So there is no need to be scared of the needle.
I have heard your vagina can tear?
Yes, you read that right. It can happen. Half of the women have at least one little tear happen during labor. Giving birth to your first child and gaining weight might make it more likely for you to tear during labor. It happens naturally and most of the time doesn’t even need too much fixing after. You can do things to prevent the tearing by gently massaging the area between your vagina and anus starting a couple of weeks before labor.
If you have heard of episiotomy before, it is a cut from your vagina to your anus, but it isn’t used anymore as doctors realized it is better to let it tear by itself. So don’t worry about that.
Will I poop when I push?
Many women worry about this before going into labor. What if I push and I poop? It’s a common fear, but an unnecessary one. Chances are, nurses and doctors that help you deliver your baby have done it a thousand times before, and every woman going into that delivery room has worried about the same thing.
When you push, you have to use muscles that are also in your rectum, and it will most likely happen that with pushing, you will poop. But no need to go crazy; everyone in the room is used to it and will not be surprised.
What if I can’t make it to the hospital in time?
What if I have to give birth in the car or at home cause I can’t make it to the hospital in time? Here is something to consider: most childbirths have a duration of eight hours. So the chance of you being stuck in traffic for eight hours is slim.
What if something goes wrong?
It’s an absolutely understandable fear of unexpected things happening that could put you and the baby in danger. You can speak with your doctor about them; chances are your doctor has delivered many babies and knows about complications and what to expect.
Most of the complications that could happen can be detected while you are pregnant with an ultrasound, etc. So if there would be some big complication that might have an effect on your baby, your doctors would inform you beforehand, and you could have a c-section if that’s safer. The best way is to talk to doctors and nurses.
It Will Be Alright
There are many fears going into labor, and you are not alone. Millions of women feel the same way you do. Remember to talk to your doctor or nurse about your fears as they are experienced—they can give you good advice.All in all, don’t worry too much! Your body can do great things.