A woman’s pregnancy is a countdown to the moment when she will give birth to her baby. The nearly 10 months (yes, 10!) of expecting is when she will start planning for the momentous occasion. She will need to choose a primary doctor, make a birth plan, and set up Lamaze and other birthing classes in order to be prepared, especially if this is her first child. However, many women are not aware of these steps and come delivery time, and will feel rushed, unprepared, and nervous when they actually go into labor.
These feelings of not being ready generally lead to impulsive decisions during labor. Women, who want to have a natural birth, often give up the idea when they experience the onset of intense contractions. They beg for the nurse to give them medication, leading to an epidural, which is anesthesia that is directly administered to the spinal cord and relieves pain and discomfort during childbirth.
Yet, studies have shown that epidurals, while being relatively safe for the baby, have complications for the mothers later down the road. After the delivery, moms who experience an epidural complain of headaches, back pain, and leg spasms. They describe the pain, not as constant, but as coming and going. The pain is tolerable for some mothers and excruciating for others. So, what can be done when the pain is unbearable?
Don’t panic, there are eight solutions that can help decrease back pain following an epidural.
#1 – First, consult with a doctor. Doctors can often prescribe medications that can help to minimize pain in all areas of the body, rather than just one.
#2 – Consult with a Chiropractor. Chiropractors are doctors that specialize in muscle pain and can help in “adjusting” certain areas of the body that experience it.
#3 – Exercise the muscles. This can be down with slow work-out techniques that help to strengthen the back, stomach, legs and neck area. In addition, Yoga or Pilates can be great in helping the body to release the pain by stretching and other types of movement.
#4 – Apply hot or cold compresses to the painful area. This is a type of therapy that is done to injuries to increase blood flow to the area for healing.
#5 – Take a hot bath every night. Taking a hot bath every night helps to relax the muscles and helps to alleviate pain.
#6 – Buy a Temper-Pedic or other pain reducing mattress. Studies have shown that increased pain in the body correlates to poor sleeping habits and lack of adequate bedding.
#7 – Eat healthy food. Even though most people do not associate food with pain, if a person suffering with pain in the joints and muscles does not have a healthy diet, then that can dramatically increase the probability of them continuing to have pain. A healthy diet parallels to a healthy and pain free body.
#8 – Get plenty of rest. Do not overdue it by spending the weekend off running errands, cleaning, and working on the yard. If possible, hire someone to do the work or have a spouse or family member help out.