7 myths about epidural anesthesia

7 myths about epidural anesthesia

Epidural anesthesia is the most used and chosen method of pain relief at vaginal birth. It remains in the top of women's preferences, being one of the least risky types of anesthesia. However, she is still quite poorly understood by most pregnant women. There are preconceptions and myths that prevent some of the women from using it. Here are some of them!

Slow down and extend your work!

Epidural anesthesia does not slow down labor. Moreover, the specialists argue that if anesthesia is given at the beginning of labor, before the cervix expands more than 4 cm, it actually speeds up and accelerates labor and implicitly, the birth. But even if it is given later, there is no such thing as an adverse effect.

You can't push yourself during birth!

The epidural has the effect of reducing pain by cushioning the area, but it does not affect the ability to push. Pregnant women feel pressure and have control over the area. Moreover, it provides comfort and a better focus on the pushing process.

Caesarean section increases risk!

It has been considered over time that performing an anesthesia at the beginning of labor increases the risk of needing a cesarean section at birth. The specialists conducted investigations and found that the effect is the opposite. Its faster administration has been shown to lower this risk slightly.

Only if there is a dilation of at least 4 cm!

Many pregnant women go on this misconception, as they have to wait until a certain number of cm is dilated until they request or receive epidural anesthesia. Specialists argue that all pregnant women should be offered neuraxial analgesic methods (epidural or spinal anesthesia) from the beginning of labor and should not expect any dilation for this.

If you wait too long, you cannot have an epidural anymore!

You may have read or been told that epidural anesthesia must be done at a certain stage of labor and that if you waited too long, you could no longer benefit from its effects. This is not true, it can be administered at any time during labor. The real reason why doctors no longer recommend or opt for an epidural in advanced labor is that it may not be "caught" fast enough until the time of delivery and it would be done in vain.

Affects baby's breastfeeding!

Doctors argue that this theory is unjustified. On the contrary, if one is to consider the fact that an epidural retains energy reserves for the mothers and even decreases the amount of stress at birth, then it can be said that it will be more concentrated and rebate in initiating her baby in the process of breastfeeding. It is possible that the milk appears more easily, precisely because the body is more relaxed.

It is scarier and more terrible than the natural birth itself!

Pregnant women who are scared of needles and injections in general may find this method scary. Just the idea of ‚Äč‚Äčinserting a needle into the spine causes them to have nightmares and prefer to bear the birth pains heroically. The procedure is not as painful and complicated as it sounds. Doctors argue that sometimes uterine contractions during labor are much more painful and frightening than injection during epidural anesthesia.

Tags Myths epidural anesthesia Epidural anesthesia Birth anesthesia