Other than natural pain relief during labor there are medicated options available. Many healthcare professionals recommend all women delivering twins have an epidural in case of an emergency cesarean section.
Some mothers choose medicated relief like an epidural while others choose relaxation and visualization techniques, non-medicated labor pain relief. What you plan for and what actually happens can change on the day, so research your options and include this in your birth plan. Always discuss your options thoroughly with your healthcare provider and your birthing partner.
An epidural is a very common method of pain relief, frequently used for a planned cesarean section allowing the mother to remain awake and alert. It takes about 20 minutes to set up another 15 or so minutes to take effect, given directly into the spinal cord with a tube left in for top ups. Along with an epidural a catheter is inserted to drain your bladder and extra fluids given through an IV in your hand/arm.
Demerol also known as Pethidine is a narcotic drug that does not numb the pain of labor but takes the edge off. Demerol is given through an intramuscular injection (in the thigh usually), taking effect more quickly than an epidural and lasting for 2 – 4 hours. Common side effects can include constipation, nausea and drowsiness.
Entonox is a mixture of half oxygen and half nitrous oxide, commonly known as laughing gas. When you feel a contraction begin you simply breath the gas in, this has a calming effect within a few seconds taking the edge of. Sometimes you may experience slight nausea and light headedness, just stop inhaling and the sickly feeling will subside.
Another option for Pain Relief during Labor is a TENS Machine
A TENS machine has small pads that stick onto your back stimulating your nerves with a very small and safe amount of electrical current. You are able to turn the machine up or down as needed, having no adverse effects on you or your babies. It’s best used from early labor and usually needs to be hired, some women find this type of pain relief ineffective while others find it very helpful.