There is good news when it comes to managing your pain during labor—there are options. Consider your options so that you can make an informed decision about what is right for you. While plans will sometimes change, it is a good idea to discuss a pain management plan with your provider well before you go into labor.
Less invasive options
The least invasive pain management methods are heat packs, birth balls, stress balls or the Jacuzzi. IV pain medication can also be ordered by your provider. IV pain medications can help you to rest and relax during your contractions, but won’t take the pain away and may make you and your baby sleepy.
Another option that can be ordered by your provider is an epidural. We have 24-hour anesthesia coverage at Salem Health, so you can choose to have the epidural at a time that both you and your provider think is appropriate. The epidural will cause numbness from the waist down while the epidural medication is infusing.
After the birth, you will be required to stay in bed until the medication level has decreased. A catheter will be placed in your bladder so you won’t need to get up to go to the bathroom. (You may still feel pressure with an epidural, but you shouldn't feel pain.)