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Natural Childbirth and Pain: How to Decrease the Fear of Giving Birth

Updated on July 10, 2011
Natural birth
Natural birth

 

Almost every pregnant woman is facing the birth fear at some stage of her pregnancy. This is perfectly normal. The top 2 reasons why women feel fear of giving birth are:

 

  1. Unknown situation. If women are giving birth for the first time, and are likely to have natural birth, they are afraid of the possible situations they will have to go through. Not knowing what to expect can make them feel nervous and afraid. Those feelings will affect the pain in negative way and eventually increase it.
  2. Pain. Great pain is the main reason of being afraid of natural birth. Most women don’t know how high is their pain threshold and think they won’t be able to cope with the amount of pain they will have to experience while giving birth. Fear of pain creates even more pain and it becomes endless cycle.

Learn as much as you can about natural birth and giving birth in general

There are several ways to stop being afraid of natural birth and to actually enjoy those unique and amazing moments in your life. The worst you can do is let fear be your guide. By doing that, you will end up going in a wrong direction for sure.

Giving birth to your child is a very special thing it can show you the complete new you, that you didn’t even know it existed.

Natural birth is something like ecstasy, when you experience great pain and go through it naturally, it might have some purifying effect. It’s the amount of adrenalin you will not experience in any other situation.

When I got pregnant, I was really afraid of giving birth. The thought of bearing strong pain for longer period of time bothered me for a while. But, I stopped thinking that way immediately. Instead of thinking about fear and the things that might go wrong, I started thinking about benefits of natural birth. That kind of attitude prepared me for the things I was about to go through better that anything else. I enjoyed giving birth to my daughter and still like to talk about my natural birth as a most beautiful thing in my life.

This is how you can prepare yourself for natural birth and eliminate the unknown factor of fear.

  1. Create your own birth plan. Your birth plan will help you react in almost every situation you will find yourself into. It will also help you make a decision in emergency situations much easier.
  2. Decide where you want to give birth if possible. Three possibilities are: home birth, birth centers and local hospital.
  3. Decide how you want to give birth if possible. Learn about different birth positions and check with your doctor or mid wife if they are available for you.
  4. Decide who you want to be with during your birth. It can be your husband, doula or a close friend.
  5. Decide if you want epidural anesthetic or not and how you plan to cope with the pain.
  6. If you want natural birth, learn as much as you can about techniques for releasing pain naturally.
  7. Learn what episiotomy is, how it happens and how it can be prevented. If it suits you, use perineum massage oil from 34. Week if your pregnancy is completely healthy. That way you will make your perineum more elastic and less prone to breakage and pain.

Natural birth and natural pain relief

I personally wanted a completely natural birth, without any anesthetic or medical interventions. I wanted to be sure that was possible for me, so, I decided to talk to my grandmother.

My grandma gave birth to my mother at home. She didn’t have any ultrasound or doctor exams. She only had her mid wife come over from time to time to check that everything was ok. One evening she felt growing pain and she called her mid wife. Few hours later she gave birth to my mother. She didn’t remember having lots of pain or any problems. She didn’t have epidural. That didn’t exist in the time she was a young woman. She had natural birth without any complications.

So, I thought if she could give birth the way she did, why shouldn’t I do the same?

This is how you can deal with pain during natural birth:

1. Talk to your mother and grandmother. If they had natural birth, that was relatively painless, than you have one reason more not be afraid. There is a great possibility that you will have similar birth with pain you will easily cope with. If you find out they had some problems, learn what they are and what you can do to be fully prepared in case you happen to be in the same situation.

2. Think about giving birth as a completely natural thing. Let the birth process evolve naturally and you will have to cope with gradual pain. Today most clinics have controlled births. That means they give pitocin to women, which is a medication to induce labor. Labors caused my medications are extremely painful and irregular. They are usually followed by epidural. Epidural usually slows down the natural flow of birth, and the rate of C section grows.

3. Think about pain as something positive that will make you feel stronger and get you some new positive experience. Birth pain is natural, and women are made to handle it with no problems. We chose to experience this pain when we got pregnant and it’s easier to go through something we know it’s not imposed to us. Great pain can be a purifier for your mind and body and women usually feel aroused after giving birth naturally.

4. You can control and release the pain naturally. Learn how breathing techniques, acupuncture and perineum massage can help you. Practice Kegel exercises two or three times a day.

5. Exercise every other day during pregnancy; prepare yourself physically for labor and natural birth.

Women with good physical condition are ready for natural birth and they tolerate the pain much easier.

Although many women won’t agree with me, but natural birth without any medications is eventually less painful. Women who are ready for natural birth are not afraid of pain. When you put yourself in that kind of relation to pain, it cannot be great anymore. You are perfectly capable to deal with it, under one condition - you have to be physically ready.

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    • Christa Dovel profile image

      Christa Dovel 

      8 years ago from The Rocky Mountains, North America

      You have given some really good tips here. I gave birth to four of my children at home, and all of the births were much more peaceful than the hospital one. Knowledge is key when making decisions and to having a calm birth. If you know what is going on and listen to your body, the pain won't amount to much because you will be able to work with it.

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