Other natural pain relief methods

Research continues to find other methods of pain relief that don't involve medication and are safe for both you and your baby. Some examples include hypnosis, acupuncture, reflexology and a procedure called transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), which uses electrical impulses to try to control pain.

If you're considering using any of the following more nontraditional methods of natural pain relief, you may need to arrange for a qualified practitioner to be with you throughout your labor to ensure everything is done correctly. These all may help relax you and reduce pain, or they may distract you from pain during labor. However, the effects may vary. A common feature of nontraditional techniques is the lack of scientific evidence of their effectiveness. With the help of an expert, you may choose to try:

Hypnosis

This works by suggestion — if you believe that you can control the pain, you may be less disturbed by it. Through self-hypnosis, some women are able to achieve deep relaxation during labor and delivery. Self-hypnosis is taught privately or in specialized childbirth classes. Often, you use audiotapes for practice and in labor. With this method, you begin self-hypnosis in early labor and continue it for as long as it helps.

Acupuncture

In this method of natural pain relief, an acupuncturist inserts small needles into specific body points to relieve pain. If you're considering acupuncture for pain relief during labor, look for an acupuncturist experienced in using the method on women who are going through labor and delivery.

Reflexology

This method involves applying pressure to specific points on your feet to relieve pain and muscular problems in other parts of your body. Again, look for a therapist — in this case, a reflexologist — who is experienced in using this method on women who are going through labor and delivery. If reflex-ology interests you, you may want to research it on your own. Your labor coach may be able to learn and apply the techniques, to go beyond simply massaging your feet during labor and delivery.

TENS

TENS is performed with the aid of a hand-held, battery-operated device with wires that attach to your body by adhesive pads. The small pads are usually placed on your lower back. When you feel a contraction starting, you press a button on the device's handset. The machine then delivers mild electrical impulses through the wires and pads and through your skin. By electrically stimulating nerves in your lower back, the device helps block the transmission of pain impulses to your brain. The electrical impulses aren't painful. You'll feel a mild tingling sensation, which you may find comforting.

Most hospitals and birthing centers don't have a TENS machine on hand. If you decide to try it, you'll likely have to rent your own set from a hospital supply company and take it with you when you first go into labor. Because TENS is used to treat chronic pain, you may be able to borrow or rent a device from the physical therapy department of a hospital.

Hypnotism and Self Hypnosis v2

Hypnotism and Self Hypnosis v2

HYPNOTISM is by no means a new art. True, it has been developed into a science in comparatively recent years. But the principles of thought control have been used for thousands of years in India, ancient Egypt, among the Persians, Chinese and in many other ancient lands. Learn more within this guide.

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