To Get An Epidural Or Not....
Deciding whether or not to get an epidural when you are in labor is a very personal choice. It helps to have all the information possible before you make that decision. At one point in time it was believed that women who got an epidural early on in labor were more likely to require a C-section delivery. Now, a new study done by The Cochrane Library shows that woman who received epidurals early on in their labor were no more likely to need a C-section than those who waited until later. According to Fit Pregnancy, roughly 60 percent of American women opt to have an epidural when they are in labor.
Knowing more about an epidural will help you decide if it is right for you.
Does it hurt to get an epidural?
When you get an epidural a needle is inserted into your spine and a skinny, flexible catheter is inserted into the epidural space. The needle is the width of a piece of thick hair. Before any of this is done the injection site is numbed with a local anesthetic. You will feel a pinch and a sting when the area is numbed. Then, when the epidural is performed you will only feel pressure not pain.
Does an epidural make it harder for you to push during labor?
The advantage of an epidural is that it allows less medication to be given to achieve pain relief. This means that you can achieve relief from the pain of labor without being totally numb. This means that you have less of a chance that you will need the assistance of forceps or a vacuum during your delivery.
Does the epidural medication reach your baby?
Any medication you take to relieve pain will reach your baby. That said, with an epidural delivery, the amount of medication that enters your bloodstream is small. The small amount of medication that reaches your baby is not known to cause harm.
- Dan Canfield