The finale of a pregnancy term is labour wherein the child descends down into the birth canal and is ready to step out into the world. It is certainly an anxious period accompanied by pain & difficulty, but the end-result is certainly overwhelming for anyone. While there is nothing that can prepare one for the pain of labour, painless mechanisms do make it easier to deal with it.
Following the nine months of pregnancy and what seems to be endless hours of labor, childbirth is a feeling matched by very few during the course of our lifetime. It is a culmination of patience, anxiety, wait and a million thoughts that must have crossed the expectant parents’ minds during the course of the pregnancy.
Have a Happy Labor
Indeed, labour is a difficult process both physically as well as emotionally. However, it is possible to have a happy labour, if you can:
- Prepare in advance
- Stay informed
- Expect some discomfort
- Spousal Support Essential
Dealing with Anxiety
While, it is natural for one to have a bit of anxiety, trepidation even, some amount of preparation for the childbirth goes a long way in providing comfort and calm. Preparation also helps improves confidence levels, gives awareness of possible contingencies, and is a great way to overcome the excessive stress one can feel due to ignorance.
Most commonly conducted childbirth preparation classes help parents understand the following aspects:
- Nutrition & diet leading up to labor
- Discomfort & pain in labor
- Exercise & breathing techniques for labor
Childbirth classes also help parents understand what happens during the course of labor and what to anticipate in advance. They receive counselling on pain, fear and stress and their questions on the same are answered by experts to assuage their fears.
Parents-to-be also learn about epidurals and pain-relief for the labor – how it is beneficial, side-effects, if any, and the methods of delivering pain-relief. The obstetrician will help the parents understand the delivery process and answer their queries on ante-natal care.
Caring for the infant is a huge responsibility and can be an overwhelming experience for new parents, especially if its their first time. Childbirth classes will have a few modules of new born care which will focus on breastfeeding, understanding the baby’s initial responses, infections, immunization schedule and so on.
It is important for both parents to attend and pay attention during the childbirth processes. Parenthood, just as pregnancy, is a combined effort and both parents need to support one another to make the child healthy and happy.