No epidural? Pain management and alternative tips – Part 5: Yoga, Mindfulness and Breathing Techniques

Photo courtesy of Clare Island Yoga Retreat Centre, Mayo, Ireland www.yogaretreats.ie

Science now broadly recognises that the practice of yoga, which includes breathing exercises and meditation, can “actually reverse the physiological signs of stress [and can] provide dramatic and lasting pain relief in a variety of conditions” (Diane Post, MD – Harvard Health Publications)

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No Epidural? Pain management alternatives and tips – Part 1

In a previous article, 42 weeks explored the epidural and other medical pain relief interventions for labour. You can read it here: Epidural, Is it right for You?

This week, 42 weeks looks at ways to manage labour without the use of medical pain relief.

A father applies pressure to his partner in labour. Taken from the 42 Weeks Gallery.

A father applies pressure to his partner in labour. Taken from the 42 Weeks Gallery.

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Feeling at home

Yoga teacher and mum-of-two Claire Maguire describes the reasons why she opted for a homebirth, outlines its benefits and looks at its take-up rate both in Ireland and globally

I’ve never met anyone having a homebirth,” exclaimed a surprised mother as we sat talking in a Co Meath playground last winter. “Are you mad?” cried my friend Deirdre
when I broke the news to her about planning my water birth at home in Ashbourne. In truth I wasn’t shocked by the reactions of people, who, after an initial intake of breath, were all extremely encouraging and supportive. According to the local public health nurse,
planned homebirths recorded in this busy commuter town stand at one – me. Continue reading

Picking sides

The idea that exclusive left side sleeping during pregnancy is a good idea has driven some women to set alarm clocks during the night. But yoga teacher and mum-of-two Claire Maguire advises just listening to your body

Most pregnant women receive unsolicited advice all the time and it is often obtained via online forums. This advice can be based on incomplete knowledge and sometimes even on myths. But some of it may be correct and of sound background, and some may just be plain common sense that you should follow. Take, for example, the idea that pregnant women should sleep on their left side so as not to harm their baby during pregnancy. Continue reading

First time mum’s natural birth in hospital

The day before Little Man’s birth, I was feeling a bit more tired than normal. I had planned to clear out the wardrobe in the baby’s room, and I made a start on it, but soon after I started, I hurt my shoulder – not sure how. So I took it easy the rest of the day. I had already slept for 11 hours straight the night before, but even so, I slept for two hours that afternoon. When it came time to go to yoga I was still too tired so I went to sleep instead. Just as well! I was also starving and ate a huge big dinner. At 10pm I was lying in bed, writing emails to people and wishing hubbie would hurry up and come to bed. Continue reading