What No One Tells You About Labour: Part I

Category: Birth & Beyond

The pain, the pressure and yes, the poop. There is so much that goes on in the delivery room that no one talks about. MH spills it all.



If you’re expecting, you’ve probably tried to gather as much information as possible from anywhere and anyone on what to expect during labour. As much as you try to prepare yourself, however, your own labour might still fill you with a few surprises that no one told you about.




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Your Water Might Not Break in One Go

Don’t expect your water to break all at once like what you see in television shows and the movies. While there are some mothers who have water-breaking experiences akin to what is usually portrayed on screen, this isn’t necessarily the case for others. For some, their water breaking feels more like a slow trickle of fluid – it might even be mistaken for peeing. If you experience this, wear a sanitary pad to keep your clothes clean.


Labour May Not be as Painful as You Think

Horror labour stories from mothers are aplenty out there, but not all mothers will undergo the same experience. “Different women have different pain thresholds. Some women find the pain associated with early labour contractions unbearable and need pain relief early in labour. There are others who do not need any pain relief until very late into labour,” says Dr Goh Shen Li, senior consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist at S L Goh Women’s Clinic at Mount Alvernia Hospital.



Labour pain generally increases gradually as you get to the later stages. Unfortunately,

you won’t really know what’s your pain threshold until you actually start going through labour.



Luckily, there are pain relief options available, so discuss this with your OBGYN to know what you should best opt for.


A Hundred Per Cent Pain Relief isn’t Guaranteed

If you have opted to have an epidural administered during your labour, be prepared that it’s not going to be completely pain-free. While the epidural might numb the pain during the early stages of labour, you might still feel a bit of pain when it’s time to push the baby out.


As Dr Goh explains, “An epidural generally provides up to 90 or 100 per cent of pain relief in the early phase of labour. As the baby’s head descends further in labour, this blockage of the pain can lessen in some women. Some women may not feel the pain of the contractions with the epidural but may feel some sensation or slight pain with the descent of the baby’s head through the birth canal. Also, during the pushing phase, the block may not be 100 per cent anymore.”




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