Even though you might have taken all the classes, read all the books, and watched all the videos, you may find it difficult to remember everything you learned while you are so intensely focused on making it through each contraction. We know birth, and we know how to support you emotionally and physically. There are many techniques available to aid in increased comfort and relaxation and labor positions are just one example. Below are three of our favorite labor positions many of our clients have found particularly helpful.
Hands and knees is especially great for clients who are experiencing back labor or just a sore lower back in general. Being on all fours takes some of the pressure off the lower back area and gives us access to the area to apply other comfort measure techniques such as heat or massage. Clients who choose this position almost always instinctively sway their hips or lower into a more seating position or squat during a contraction because it feels good to do so. We encourage you to listen to your body and to do what feels right.
On your knees: Gravity is your friend! During the throws of active labor, your legs can become weak, unsteady, and tired. If you are on your knees and propping yourself up on a yoga ball, your doula, or the couch/bed, you can give your legs a rest but still give plenty of room to baby to maneuver down. Additionally, being on your knees, rather than your hands and knees, gives your wrists a break and is an easy way to allow your body to relax in between contractions. And just like hands and knees, this position allows for easy transitions into other positions such as squats and swaying.
The toilet: Sitting backwards on a chair or toilet is a great way to open your hips and the pelvis to create room for baby. This position also allows you to rest in between contractions and can give your pelvis and bottom some relief from all those intense sensations of pressure. And just like hands and knees, and knees, we have access to the lower back and hips so we can use additional comfort measure techniques.
Because each birth is such a unique and personal experience that there’s no way to predict, with much accuracy, what you’ll want and what you won’t want when it comes to comfort measures. When working with our clients to develop a birth plan, many are open to flexibility and they depend on us to encourage them and make suggestions throughout labor so that we can maximize comfort and decrease the sensation of pain. If you’re ready to explore how The Fayetteville Doulas can help you during labor, contact us!