It might seem that if there is no pain, there is no problem. However, doctors insist that pain is necessary: it forces a woman to complete the process of birth – to strive to end it with the birth of a baby. If there is no pain, there is no desire to make an effort.
According to Doctor of obstetrics Dennis Walsh from the University of Nottingham, England, the pain during childbirth has its own advantages for both mother and baby. He emphasizes that painkillers, such as epidural, violate the natural process of psychological connection between the mother and the child.
Dr. Walsh says that labor pain often helps to regulate the time of delivery, reinforces psychological connection between the mother and the baby, and prepares the woman for motherhood responsibilities.
Over the past 20 years, the use of epidural anesthesia has doubled. In fact, it is used only on demand of women in labor, even despite the fact that the medicine increases medical risks during childbirth and despite the availability of alternative and less invasive ways to control pain symptoms.
Meanwhile, according to Dr. Walsh, the pain has positive physiological effects, allowing to set the rhythm for the contractions and activate the production of endorphins, the hormones that help to adapt to the feeling of pain.
The doctors have noted that the use of epidural anesthesia facilitates side effects, such as the need for hormone replacement therapy during labor and the use of forceps for the child to be born safely.
According to the research by Swedish doctors, one should not overuse these painkillers at least because of the fact that the risk of drug addiction among the adolescents, whose mothers received morphine drugs during labor, is five times higher.
The nervous system of the baby “remembers” the narcotic analgesic. And then, if one day the teenager gives it a try, there will develop a fast and strong addiction.
Dr. Walsh says that alternative methods of reducing pain are safer for both the mother and the newborn baby. For instance, he suggests using the technique of hypnosis, massage, yoga, and birthing pools.
It is believed that the woman, who is psychologically ready to deliver a baby, who is able to breathe properly, is well aware of all the phases of labor, who is able to control herself and is aimed at the result, can cope well without painkillers.