Pain in Labor

The pain in childbirth is one of the biggest fears that moms have, and you all want to know what pain management tools and which essential oils will help me have the most successful natural birth.

“There is a secret in our culture, and it’s not that birth is painful. It’s that women are strong.”

—Laura Stavoe Harm

This is the event you have waited for. There’s no changing your mind now. Your body and this baby have come into perfect alignment with each other, and this is the day. One of the things I love about essential oils is how they address the body on all these levels. The body is a Symphony, and when one of these areas is out of balance, it can throw the whole body out of tune. You may want to dilute essential oils used in labor with fractionated coconut oil, not because they can’t be used undiluted, but because usually they accompany a massage and a massage just feels better with a carrier oil and we get a more even and slower absorption when we dilute. Some moms may be very sensitive to smells while in labor and some scents can be very overwhelming, so remember that a little goes a long way.

Labor is hard work. Some might interpret this as painful, and some may describe it as intense, either way, a lot is going on in your body on all levels emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually. The sensations you feel during birth are NORMAL; in fact, they are your body’s way of bringing your baby into your arms naturally. The way you perceive this pain or discomfort is what will help you to manage it well. It’s a completely different pain you feel when you are injured or have an illness. Labor is hard work; it’s intense work. The contractions in labor will come and go. They usually start slow and gentle and increase in strength and length. You can relax and rest in between each one. As you remember to relax and breathe, it will help you keep calm and feel in control.

“The temptation to quit will be greatest just before you are about to succeed.”

—Laura Stavoe Harm

There are SO many tools for you to help manage and stay on top of the pain that can lead to fear. Some of you will feel the need to move; this may look like a brisk walk or squats or swaying your hips from side to side. There are those of you that will feel like relaxing, and if labor starts in the late evening or early morning hours, I HIGHLY recommend you relax as much as possible. I know you have waited nine months for this…but trust me, you will need your rest, and this is your last opportunity for a while. Remember to drink lots of water to stay hydrated. Empty your bladder every hour, and if you are drinking enough water, this should be automatic. Both dehydration and a full bladder will cause contractions to be more painful. A shower or warm bath with calming essential oils in it might feel good. Dim lights or candles and soft music in the background creates a relaxing, calm atmosphere, remember relaxation is the KEY!

Dad. I know it’s hard to see the love of your life doing hard things, and you are by nature, fixers. Labor isn’t anything you can “fix,” but you CAN offer encouragement and give positive affirmations. You CAN massage her feet and back if that feels good to her. It’s good to talk about these things ahead of time because some moms don’t want to be touched. This isn’t a time to get offended, so talking about what feels good ahead of time will help. Keep in mind; she still may change her mind in the moment. Low backpressure and pressure on her knees or the magic hip squeeze is almost always a win.

Keep in mind there is no wrong way to go through labor and birth; you may get to a point where what you planned just isn’t cutting it, don’t beat yourself up. Of course, I’m an advocate for a natural unmedicated birth, but sometimes that’s not an option. If you decide to have some pain relief medication, ask about all the pros and cons.

When you make an informed decision, there is no need to carry any guilt, no need to feel pressure, no need for regrets, there is no wrong way or right way, and there is no judgment. You must do what’s right for you and your baby at that moment. Never doubt your strength. As you give birth, you find out what you are truly made of. YOU are a strong, competent, and capable mama, so trust yourself and your inner strength.

Labor Support

This blend smells amazing and can be helpful for labor pain with fear and anxiety.

Put in a 10 mL roller bottle and fill to top with FCO.

Massage into low back and feet as often as needed during early or active labor.

TIP: Diffusing Wild Orange and Balance helps you stay in the present moment letting go of fear and anxiety.

“Birth isn’t something we suffer, but something we actively do and exult in.”

—Sheila Kitzinger