The Honest Truth About Giving Birth
One of the most profound moments of a woman's life is when they bring in a new life into their household. It is exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time, even though there are many uncertainties which may present themselves in the due course of pregnancy and birth. Though it is the most anticipated time for the expecting parents, you might benefit from getting a clearer picture of what to expect in the upcoming pregnancy and birth. Don’t let this scare you, rather let this be a motivation to be better prepared for days to come so that you can tackle them effectively.
Here are some honest truths about childbirth which people often don’t tell you:
Epidurals are not always useful and are subjected to work differently.
For most expecting mothers, an epidural is presented as an option which takes the entire pain and hassles away. But, that is not the true case, as the experience with epidurals differs from one woman to another. Also, epidurals are not administered till the time one is in active labor which makes the entire process painful. The pain relief isn't a guarantee as sometimes the medicines may not spread, which may just limit the pain felt, leaving certain sections vulnerable to pain while other sections are numb.
The reaction of every woman to labor and childbirth is different.
Every woman handles labor differently. What might have worked for your friend or sister might not work for you. It is important to keep an open mind and handle it the best way you can and be assured that your best is good enough.
Rhythmic breathing helps
Calming exercises like rhythmic breathing, visualization, etc can help you keep your mind open and your muscles relaxed. Focusing on what the end result will be and how you will meet your child soon can help you keep your mind away from the pain. This kind of effective compartmentalization helps in keeping yourself together in moments of stress and discomfort.
You might poop
Pooping during labor is not unheard of, in fact, it is fairly common. Most doctors don't bring up the topic of pooping, in order to not traumatize the expecting mothers. However, most mothers end up pooping while they are pushing during labor. The doctors and nurse hardly bat an eye and the mothers hardly notice what they have done.
You may have to push for a long time
Even though the movies might show otherwise, it takes longer than 3 pushes to get the baby out. It can be one, two, three hours or more as the baby takes his own sweet time to get out. You might get tired of pushing or get fatigued in the process too. Doing some exercises to build stamina during pregnancy can be useful for longer pushing, in case the need arises.
You won’t be allowed to eat
In most cases, the expecting mother is not allowed to eat while in labor and can have only water. This is mainly due to the possibility of having to do a cesarean section, in which case, the doctors don't want you to aspirate, or get food in your airways. Various research argues that the women shoulds be allowed to have food if they want to, but doctors reassure that food is probably the last thing on your mind if you on your labor.
You will bleed
Prepare yourself for the bleeding that happens after the childbirth. It is normal to bleed up to four to six weeks after giving birth, and most pregnant women are prepared for that, however, most women are not prepared for how heavy the bleeding can be. It may be a downright shock as a new mom. Even though in most cases it is normal, if the bleeding continues abnormally and you are not sure if this is normal, reach out to your doctor.
Breastfeeding might hurt
For some women, it can be a smooth sailing, but in some cases, the mothers experience pain while nursing. Most social expectations define how a woman should just be able to nurse the baby naturally and there will be no problem, however, the reality is different. The mother and baby are both learning and there might some struggles in the way before they can finally find a balance.
The first trip to the toilet is utterly painful.
After the entire process of natural childbirth and the body might feel the urge to urinate, however, it will be very painful due to the swollen vagina, and after what it has just been through. It will eventually come back to its original form, but the initial trips to the bathroom remains a painful experience.
Loose skin after birth
What has been done over the course of 9 months cannot be undone in days. After carrying a baby for 9 months, the muscles of the stomach will not spring back into shape within days. It will normalize over time, after proper care and exercises, however; it is necessary to respect the body and allow it the time it requires. It is not something which is permanent and things will start looking normal in a couple of months.
Postpartum contractions are real.
If you thought you are done with contractions, know that it is not over yet! The postpartum contractions are super bad for some women, and these contractions can feel worse than the actual labor. As the uterus contracts back to its original size, the pain is almost the same as labor or even worse. Once the uterus gets back to its normal, the pain will cease.
These are only a few honest truths about bringing a new life into this world. As there can be no rainbow without a little rain, these factors should not dishearten or frighten an expecting mother. One should always remember that the pain is temporary and the joy that it brings along with is permanent. Do as much research as you can before going into it, and there will be no surprises!