Pregnancy 18-24 Community
Epidural Get it or not?? Please help!
About This Community:

This patient support community is for discussions relating to pregnancy and childbirth in women age 18 to 24.

Font Size:
A
A
A
Background:
Blank
Blank
Blank
Blank Blank

Epidural Get it or not?? Please help!

I have lots of time to figure it out, but I was just reading about the Epidural (I didn't have it with my first, got pain meds via the IV) and I'm scared to death of it!  All the back problems it could cause afterwards, etc.  

So, For those who got the Epidural, Are you glad you got it?
Did it hurt?
Did you have any issues afterwards?
Did you recover quickly after the birth?  (For example I was walking and moving around once they stitched me up from tearing).

See, I got the pain meds in the IV, and I didn't really like how they made me feel, Kinda loopy and in and out of sleep.  IT was horrible for the contractions, but then slept when no contractions.  From what I've read those are my two basic options.  

Also, I want to wait till I need them, last time I was fine till they broke my watter, I want to try and do it naturally, but need to have pain management as a back up.
Related Discussions
28 Comments Post a Comment
Blank
283175_tn?1295540865
Hiya I had the epidural myself 16 years ago with my son,glad I did at time,as was so scared of pain,gas etc didnt work.
However I do agree with the fact it does give you back problems,or at least it has for me,ive suffered bad over the years because of it.and now suffer with siactica..
as for how quick I recovered i was able to get up shortly afterwoods,slightly wombley for a while on my feet,but pretty quick.even after 12 stitches..but over all brill didnt feel anything other than heavy feeling.ha much like now really..
Blank
145992_tn?1341348674
I had an epidural but for me it was a waste.  First of all, it didn't really hurt but it was uncomfortable to have to sit still during a contraction.  Then they couldn't get the catheter in right so they attempted to put it in twice in two different spots which meant I had to get the shot with the numbing solution more than once.  I only was numb on one side of my body and I managed to feel everything anyway.  I dilated so fast that for me, it wasn't necessary, I could've done without it.  Next time I give birth I will try to go without it.  I had back pain after it for awhile but I'm fine now.  Recovery after child birth for me was slow.  It took a few weeks for my stitches to heal and I was sore for a couple of weeks.  
Blank
1128483_tn?1277343886
Thanks tarajanes and mami1323!  I was kind of sore, but was able to move around with no issues right afterwards, Also the next day I felt just fine.  It did take several weeks for the stitches to "heal" but other than that I felt normal afterwards.  I think the possible back issues are what scares me the most. I have an apt on Wednesday and I was thinking of talking to my midwife about it, but wanted to ask some other ladies first.
Blank
906115_tn?1344204109
I had one and it did not work at all, They ahd to let it totally wear off becasue I could not even push but felt every contraction. I waas young and they said I needed one so I got one. BIg mistake! The problem with the epidural is that you have to have a full bag of IV's in before they give it to you because it raises your blood pressure and slows labor, then they like to give pitocin and that speads it up but causes other problems. If they give you and epidural when they should is around 6-7cm or it will effect labor and by then it is n;t that much longer so I say go without! I have had natural and it was mmuch better! Yes the pain is hard but if you don't have anything you can be mroe mobile and that will help with pain believe me! Being able to move positions and push in a way your body says is so much better and when the baby is out no more pain! Horray you made it through and you can concentrate on your new little one fully. Your midiwfe is actually saying to get one? If you can find a doula you won't even need one! They are awesome!
Blank
1128483_tn?1277343886
My midwife isn't saying anything yet.  It was just in the binder from the hospital with the pain management options.  I just didn't like the IV and was looking into the Epidural more.  She said that she'd do what ever I wanted for pain management, but I wanted to try to get some personal experiences before talking to her about my concerns about either.

No one ever told me what I needed, for both my first and this pregnancy the dr's have given me the information and told me to ask them questions if need be to help decide.  

we really don't have money for a doula and I don't believe it's covered by our insurance.
Blank
1039620_tn?1272597604
I got an Epidural and I loved it. There was a slight pinch, like getting your finger poked, but other than that, no pain at all. I had absolutely no issues afterwards and was up and walking within an half hour or so after the birth. I haven't had any back problems or anything from it. My son was wide awake and alert when he was born so no problems there either. I plan on getting an Epidural this time also.

The only thing I can say is research all your options and do what you think is right for you.
Blank
304970_tn?1331429594
I had an epidural with my son & it was my savior. I was in so much pain and it was neary instant relief. It did not hurt to put in place. I had sciatica issues prior to my son's birth, and they increased for about 9 months after I had him, but if I ever have another child, I will likely get an epidural again.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I got the epi and i'm SO SO SO SO happy i did. i had twins and all of my labor pains were in my back. i couldn't move. i was laying in my hospital bed in the fetal position. that was the only way i could lie without my back going into spasms with every contraction. the only part that hurt was the doc kept trying to stick the needle in during a contraction which tightened the muscles in my back. so getting pricked 2 x's more than needed s*cked but it was really just a BIG pinch. I had no issues afterward. i felt GREAT! i could actually lay down normally and that was great. the hospital i was at doesn't allow recovering mothers to walk for the 3 days they're in the hospital except to go to the bathroom....i was walking all over my bedroom within an hour or two afterward. i couldn't stand just laying there. but when we went to see the boys in nicu they made me use a wheel chair. (which was fine since the vaginal area was still sore from pushing out two babies) i wasn't cut. i tore. i told them NO cutting.

i was told by a few women that i'm less of a mother and less of a woman for getting the epi but i don't see it that way. i did something my ob's and everyone else told me i wouldn't be able to do. i delivered both of my boys vaginally. if getting pain meds makes me less of a woman. oh well. i'd get it again if i were to get pregnant again (i also have a low threshold for pain. i just can't take pain. at all.)

you just have to do what's right for you. if you think an epi would work for you get it...if you don't want it or are too afraid of the possible side affects don't get it.
Blank
1128483_tn?1277343886
See I've heard it's about 50/50 for good and bad.  I really like the stories, it's very helpful!  

penswriter - Wow, they wouldn't let you walk for 3 days unless going to the bathroom!  With my first I was walking everywhere, they actually encouraged me to walk and said it would help with recovery. I had several stitches because I was pushing for several hours and they needed to use a vacume to help get him out, I noticed the stitches more so when sat than walked.  I also didn't let them cut, my dr said he actually didn't even give the option because if you tear naturally you heal much better than if you were cut.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I got the epi 14 years ago, didnt have any pain with delivery but i have had back problems since.  I just had DD 6 months ago and got the epi and it only worked on certain parts of my body so i felt the pain in my arse and part of the pushing it was freaking weird.  And it hurted when they gave me the epi.  But i needed it bcuz once they broke my water bag and gave me the pitocin OMG i could not handle the pain.

Its a personal choice, your body and mind will let you no what to do at the time, i went in with the intent to TRY natural just as i did with my first child lol
Blank
906115_tn?1344204109
yeah that is awful and sounds wrong that they won't let you walk around! My sister had a 4th degree Y cut and was sore to move at all but they told her to walk around too. I though that most hospitals just say like if you have had pain stuff to ask for help till it wears off, or the first couple times getting up cuz your blood pressure can fluctuate after bleeding from the birth. You go girl for walking around your room!!


No getting one does not make you lees of a woman in any way!!! It is personal choice and yep I would say that it is about 50/50 for yays and nays. But it seems like woman on either side once they have a bad experience then they say NO and once they have a good experience say yes:)

I am a all natural woman and have a high pain tolerance so my opinion on them goes that way. I also don't trust dr's and meds as it seems like down the road they say oops we made a mistake and it is not a good thing and this med is bad for you now. I have had that happen all to much! I also have heard enough horror stories that freak me to death.

Glad to hear no one is pressuring you in to anything. I hope they give you support till the end and the goods and the bads you know both ways. Good luck deciding what to do and I hope that you do not put to much into " I want it this way" becasue it seems that is when woman get disapointed with the whole birth if it doesn't go how you'd expect. You know what I mean? Like you said you want a back up plan, that is good!
Blank
654038_tn?1326306199
I had the epidural and i have had no back problems whatsoever. I think for my first child it was the best choice, i mean i lasted till i was 6cm and my contractions were 1min apart. Its really up to you and how your labor is going. I wouldnt read to much because it just makes everything more scary then it actually is...trust me i used to sit at home and watch those baby stories and most were the ones with complications and they scared the crap out of me. So i would just see how it goes and then decide. I waited till the last min. to get mine. I hope this helps.
Blank
1128483_tn?1277343886
30something13 - I know EXACTLY what you mean!  My first birth didn't go how I wanted it to at all.  I want to try natural again, because I did just fine till they broke my watter to speed things up (If I knew what I did know I would have made them wait a few hours at least!).  See I dilated 3X faster in the first hour after they broke my watter then I should have, and if it progresses like a Typical labor then I'd be just fine.  When I asked my midwife about this, she said that my chances are 50/50 for the same thing happening when my watter breaks.  I guess it's common when they break your watter, but some women, even when the water breaks on it's own, it still progresses like that!    I'm looking into the pain management for when I can't handle it, because the IV made me loopy, and I didn't like that.  BUT the facts are that the IV pain meds have less complications, but the Epi is much stronger.  I'm just trying to decide which I want as my back up.

I'm the kind of person that likes to look at all the what if's and put them in the birth plan so I don't need to think while in labor!

honeybear56 - I know what you mean about the baby stories!  I watched them too!  They scared me, however I knew my chances of a bad labor were not THAT high.  Mine wasn't the best, but it could have been worse!  
Blank
363110_tn?1340924019
I had a csection so they gave me a spinal, but it REALLY helps. I didn't feel my ctx afterwards (I was in labor when I had my csection)
Blank
99457_tn?1321882277
I had the epi, for me it only lasted 20mins so it was a waste of time, at the time i was glad i got it until the pain came back. I ended up with a really sore back and its still sore some days after 6 months. So since it ran out i was able to get up and walk around straight after i was stitched up! In hindsight now that i know i can handle the pain without it i would never get one again, as once it wore off i couldnt get back up and walk around while still in labour. Good luck, its hard to make these decisions in the lead up because i guess you cant really gage how much pain you will be in until it happens
Blank
1072295_tn?1255453136
i got it on my first,i did not feel any pain,but i did not feel incontrol so that was horrible.it also took me afew days to get over it,to walk properly and bodly funtions etc(sorry if tmi)  plus my back has never been the same, i so wish i didnt get it. i had the rest of my kids with no pain relief at all and it was great. its not as bad as you would think, your in complete control and know exactly what your doing.and the recovery was great.30 mins after delivery i was walking around the hospital and felt great.
Blank
327668_tn?1224795950
I was induced at 34 weeks exactly. my fluid was low so they wanted me to have my little girl early.

They induced me and it took me an hour to get to 10CM. At about 6 Cm I asked for my epidural. They sent my husband out and grabbed the guy to give me the epidural. The nurse who was taking care of me was with me the whole time. I was having HUGE labor pains the whole time he was trying to get me set up, You have to sit with your head in your lap kinda hunched, and not move which is horrible during contractions. they guy put the hole in my back and the plastic thing and the tube hook up. By the time he hooked me up the nurse had told him not to turn it on until she checked me because she thought it was too late for me to get any medication.

She checked me and I was 10 cm! within 10 min I went from 6 to 10. They grabbed my husband and I had to start pushing.

My husband was laughing at me on the inside and feeling real bad for me because they gave me the button to give my self pain medication but there was nothing hooked up to it, so in between pushes I was hitting it like a mad woman.

So while I had the procedure done, i did not reap any of the benifits. My back hurt in the spot they gave it to me in, for about a week, but I don't have any reoccurring back pain from it. However when he gave it to me, my left leg shook, and I could not stop it. He moved the tube around in my back until it stopped. he probably hit a nerve.

3 hours of pushing and my little girl was out, however they had to use a vaccume cause I should have had a C-section, and they snipped me with the scissors.

After she was out though they hit me up with a needle for the stiches so I at least would not feel that. It took about an hour after birth for me to get up and walk around to take a shower. After you give birth certainly try to take a shower, it will absoulty improve how you feel.

Yes it was the worst pain I ever felt, pushing while one doc is helping me push and barkking orders, while another doc is pulling on a vaccume and another doc snipped me with the scissors. Youch. But it showed me I could handle it, It just feels like a lot of pressure and the need to go to the bathroom, which all lets up as you push, so the more pushing the faster the baby comes out and the less you actually feel the pain.

If you decide to get the epidural:
- Dont wait too long, in case your start dialting pretty fast towards the end, otherwise they will take the option out of your hands.

- It will be difficult but usually people who get back pain was from one of two circumstances, A) the person giving the epidural's fault, they can hit nerves or not be expierenced enough.
b) No matter how bad the pain, especially if your in the middle of a contraction, do not move. The slightest twitch can really harm you.

If you decide not to get it

A:) yes, be prepared it will be the most excruciating pain you have ever been in, but you can handle it. The doctors are there to ensure you are ok.

b) Remember breathing is key during the pain. The only reason why they teach you to breathe in classes is because the pain is so immense you will forget to breathe or breathe wrong, and have trouble pushing, or even getting dizzy. If you can keep focused on just breathing you will be just fine.

c) I thought about my little girl the whole time I was in pain, what she would look like and all, it really helped me get through it.

good luck!
Blank
419158_tn?1316575204
I have 4 children and I had the epidural with 3. I didnt have any back problems but I did have a reaction to it and had to be given benydryl. I always forgot about the iching untill after I was in heaven, lol. My last baby, the meds didnt work and I had scars from iching so much:~( Other than that is was heaven!
Blank
676912_tn?1332816151
I didn't have an epidural, I had a spinal (no catheter) because I had a scheduled c-section. I didn't have to live through contraction pain while they were putting it in, but the lady who started with it said I had a "tight" back, and tried 5 times before getting someone else to try, one of the tries from my right hip to my right foot had pain shooting through it. The guy that came in for the last try got it on the first time. So I had the local anesthetic and spinal needle shoved into my back 6 times each. It's been 20 months, and I'm now about to start physical therapy because my back hurts all the time still. I can no longer sleep on either side without a pillow between my knees, and can barely mop my 10 X 10 kitchen without stopping to give my back a break. I really hope if you do get the epidural that it turns out better for you than it did for me, I was planning on going completely natural without medication at all, but my son was breech. We are currently TTC number two, and I can tell you that this time unless it is absolutely medically necessary I am refusing a second c-section and plan to go completely 100% natural. I did have contractions before my c-section, and I'm sure they weren't as bad as they can get but I feel like I can handle it.
Blank
1146463_tn?1319112478
No one can make that decision for you but I can tell you that I am on my 4th baby and had my first 3 All NATURAL, no drugs at all. I personally like being able to get up right after I have the baby and get in the shower. and walk around!!! Plus my opinion I feel that the epidural make the labor last longer cause you cant feel what is going on! I know several people that had alot of issues after epidurals. There is no way I would do it, but that is just me. Good luck with your decision and whatever decision you  make I hope it works for you!!!!
Blank
376739_tn?1317669990
Well some doulas do a slide-scale pricing. It doesn't hurt to at least think about getting one.

I had an epidural with my first two and I wish I hadn't. Not because anything bad happened per se but because of my personal feelings about it. So my third baby I had her epidural-free and with a midwife instead of a doctor. It was an amazing experience. I felt closer to her and I healed way better and I felt like a million bucks after giving birth. With my second daughter I didn't even want to hold her after I had her because I was so shaky and felt like vomiting everywhere. It was a temporary means for my personal pain management and it adversely affected her. I was ADAMANT about not getting an epidural with my third daughter to prevent her from experiencing after effects as well; not just myself.

Everyone has to make their own choice but that was my experience! I recommend watching The Business of Being Born. It helped validate a lot of the decisions I made with my third birth and is full of amazing information.

And if you do end up getting an epidural you're no less a woman. Each birth is beautiful and unique in it's own right!
Blank
1012334_tn?1283706579
I have had 3 children and am cureently pregnant with #4. my first two I had completely natural and it was painful, but I felt great afterwards recuperated quickly and the babies were alert awake and not drugged at all! with my third i decided to try getting something in my IV and it helped for about 45 minutes althugh it made me very drowsy then it wore off and i think it actually hurt more once it wore off, because i had'nt felt the contractions build up as much. the baby and I were still fine afterward, although I was a little shaky, but not too much. I really did'nt like the experience though and with this pregnancy i am planning on trying to go all natural again. I know several people who have had good experiences with epidurals, but i am afraid of anthing going in my spine and the idea of an epidural scares me more than thr pain does. good luck and hope things go the way you want them too!
Blank
419158_tn?1316575204
Kla1 had a very good point. I had my epidural asap with my 4th becuase I knew it was my last baby and I wanted to make it as pleasent as possible. I wasnt really in labor. I got it too early and it slowed everything down. My little girl was my longest labor and I needed pitocin to get things moving. I never needed that with any of my others. I was usually in active labor with 1-3 before reaching the hospital.
My point is I agree with Kla1......if you get it too early it can slow things down, but then again it can help to move things along if your too tense too.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I had the epi with my first and definitely plan to have it with all future deliveries! (I actually am scared that next time the doc won't be available to put in the epi). IV meds didn't help at all, had the epi put in at 4cm and then went to 10cm by the time I was lying down after the epi was put in. I could still feel the contractions and I had control to push. I was certainly glad that I didn't feel the tearing or sutures. No troubles after the epi was removed. I was up to the shower 30 min after the repairs were done. Good Luck!
Blank
1128483_tn?1277343886
Thanks for all the advice!  After reading all of your stories I have decided not to get it.  I made it through one labor with just the IV meds, so I can do it again if need be.  I know there were a lot of good stories, but I think that since I made it through my first labor with no epi that I should be fine this time too.  I think I'm more scared of what could happen if it goes in wrong, etc.  than making it through labor.  
Blank
646779_tn?1281999641
GET IT!! I didn't have one on my 1st two labours but I did on the last one. Labour was fab when it kicked in!! All I had was a slightly stiff back for two weeks after the birth. Better than the 8 hour labour before the epi was administered. Then 2 hours of bliss! Just make sure you have a small dose so you can push at the end. If I ever have more kids (unlikely) I would put one on my birthplan! :-)
Blank
1234137_tn?1267819655
I had an epi with both of my children and I wouldn't have had it any other way. With my 1st, they gave me just a little too much to where I was totally numb and hardly felt the birth.  With my 2nd, they had the dose just right!  I felt like there was a blanket over my legs, and was able to fall asleep before they had me start pushing.  Plus I still felt the baby acutaly being born.  I don't remember the pain of getting it put in b/c they did give me a local first.  I made it a point to never see what the needle looked like either.  That helped!  Good luck!
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
yeah! we can do it girl! i was watching "16 and pregnant" yesterday and all these girls were crying before getting the epidural and afterwards they were so cool and relax, and this made me doubt.. but after reading some of the recent posts on this thread it was like a reaffirmation!
Blank
Post a Comment
To
Blank
Weight Tracker
Weight Tracker
Start Tracking Now
Pregnancy 18-24 Community Resources
RSS Expert Activity
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
How to Silence Your Inner Critic an...
14 hrs ago by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
Emotional Eaters: How to Silence Yo...
Mar 26 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
1344197_tn?1392822771
Blank
Vaginal vs. Laparoscopic Hysterecto...
Feb 19 by J. Kyle Mathews, MD, DVMBlank
Top Pregnancy Answerers
7001988_tn?1392138397
Blank
YoungLadyDay14
5761111_tn?1373909851
Blank
actright
Hawthorne, CA
5615074_tn?1378320440
Blank
Makayla213
AK
6710217_tn?1386114492
Blank
PaytonFaith
home , IL
Avatar_f_tn
Blank
Babyg92
FRESNO, CA
Avatar_f_tn
Blank
lovetianaaa