Strategies for Coping with Labor Pains

Normal childbirth comes with labor pains and anxiety. At this time, a mother knows she is ready to bring a new life into the world. Therefore, it is important to be prepared physically, mentally, and psychologically (Diane, Hellen and Pauline, 2009). During labor, it is imperative to be in a position to control the pains in order for a woman to give birth anxiety free. As such, there are steps involved in quality improvement of pain control among obstetric patients within a hospital setting.

Mothers who do not wish to use medication can use hypnobirthing, a non-medication method of pain control. This technique is implemented for fear release and relaxation. For some women, bathing is a good way to reduce pain. Massage is used to control pain, nausea, and vomiting during labor. The process breaks the pain communication in the body therefore relieving pain. The application of TENS also relieves pain by stimulating the body to release natural painkillers. Other pharmacy methods include administration of anesthesia and combined spinal epidural.

Non-medication method of controlling labor pain helps a patient to relax as the cervix continues to dilate. These methods are recommended, because they have no side effects and they help a woman control her body. Non-medication labor pain management is the best method, because a patient can control her feelings. Moreover, patients are in a position to have the perception of pain (Diane, Hellen and Paulne, 2009). On the other hand, medication in labor pain is useful for women who have difficulty in labor because of the size of the fetus. At times the size of the fetus determines the levels of pain. In some cases, the pain can be so overwhelming that it is difficult for women to control their feelings and emotions.                   

Evidence-based Pain Management Strategies

The first stage in labor is dilation in which a nurse should encourage deep breathing and walking. When dilation continues, a woman may feel contractions growing stronger and stronger. The intervening nurse should incorporate massages while encouraging the woman to rest during the contractions. In addition, a nurse should encourage the patient to void every 1-2 hours in order to avoid the distention of the bladder.

When the cervix is about 8cm long, contractions tend to come every 8-10 minutes. This indicates that the birth canal is steadily opening up. At this point, the woman shows increased signs of restlessness and irritability. Discomfort continues to grow as the patient experiences cramps in the feet and even contraction amnesia. The intervention nurse should assist while changing positions as well as support using pillows. It is advisable that a nurse prevents perennial infections. The woman should be advised to rest through the contractions as they grow stronger thus adding more pain. It is important to help the patient maintain a breathing pattern while talking to her through the instructions. The nurse should be vigilant to watch out for any abnormalities. During the expulsion of the fetus, the nurse should be there to encourage open-glottis pushing (Kulesza-Bronczyk, Dobrzycka, Glinska, and Terlikowski, 2013).

The Role of Nursing in an Obstetric Unit

In nursing units, both the patient and the nurse have their roles in reducing labor pain. It is unfair to let a woman grow through overwhelming pain in hours of labor yet there are interventions. According to Diane, Pauline and Helen (2009), nursing roles are defined by the nursing code of ethics. Nurses are supposed to cater for a pregnant lady just as the other patients. The role of nursing during child labor is assisting the expectant to manage pain and discomfort through the recommended ways. During labor, the role of a nurse is to assist midwives and doctor in terms of administering injections and medicines. As a nurse, one is expected to check on any kind of unusual behavior, such as excessive pain, high or low blood pressure among others. Therefore, a nurse is fundamental in the whole process of labor, especially in helping to mange pain (Kulesza-Bronczyk, Dobrzycka, Glinska, and Terlikowski, 2013).

Though women are different, there are basic steps of controlling pain such as encouraging deep breathing. Therefore, as a nurse, one should consider the best method of labor pain relief in order to grant the patient safe labor. A nurse should not leave the patient in labor alone at all times. On the contrary, before labor women should be equipped with the basics of labor pain control for easy and safe childbirth.