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Forum: Natural Childbirth

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  #1  
July 28th, 2006, 11:51 PM
Mommyof3Hoppers's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Have any of you tried the bradley method of birthing techniques? I read about it on line the other day and went right out to Border's and bought a book that trains you on this method. I have found in reading over half of the book that it really bashes on lamaze. I was wondering if any of you mom's with 2+ kids have tried both methods and which you recommend more. I like some of the ideas that the bradley method offers but I also think that the lamaze breathing helps to take your mind off of the pain because you are focusing on rhythmic breathing instead. Maybe I will just do a combo of both! Any advice you all have would be helpful!

Oh yea, I am meighan by the way, pregnant with my 2nd. With my first I reached 9 1/2 cm and my dr recommended I take the epi otherwise she thought I wouldn't have the strength to push her out. I was a little disappointed afterwards that I came so far without medication and then gave in at the end! I REALLY want to stay focused this time and do this all natural!!! TIA for any advice!!!
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  #2  
July 29th, 2006, 03:51 AM
wonderfullymade's Avatar Doula & MW Apprentice
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Hey there. I am a Bradley Instructor, 26 years old, and practicing Bradley for 7 years now. I am guessing that you are talking about the book "Natural Chilbirth the Bradley Way". They have a whole section in the beginning that talks about Lamaze vs. TBM. There is a reason for that - TRUE Lamaze was being taught during that time (pant pant, hee hee hoooooo, hee hee hooo) and was the method associated with Natural Childbirth - though it was not the method that coined the phrase (guess who did - lol - sorry bunny trail).

Dr. Bradley and his proponents wanted to stress to ppl, since it was the VOGUE thing to do, that Lamaze is not healthy in labor and birth. The concept that Dr. Ferdinand Lamaze teaches is called Psychoprophylaxis. The way that it works is a combination of distraction and hyperventilation. Hyperventilation is the reduction of normal CO2 levels in your bloodstream. Results can be a 'high' feeling to an 'out of control' feeling, to even passing out. The lack of CO2 in the bloodstream causes many medical dangers, including, by the time YOU feel it, your baby is already well beyond you. The reason why it 'works' is because the CO2 (or lack thereof) inhibits the pain receptors of the brain from working properly. That, in combination with the 'high' feeling and distraction make for an adequate pain control method of choice.

But like I said, it is not without risk. Dr. Bradley, OTOH, wanted to introduce a TRUE natural way, void of risks, to birth babies that would make it an enjoyable event for moms. That is why they pick on Lamaze - because it is the method associated with Natural Childbirth and it is not natural, and not without risk.

I have 4 kids (pregnant with #5). And, with my first baby, I read Natural Chilbirth the Bradley way and took the hospital class. It was taught by a 70 year old woman who was an ex-Lamaze teacher. She taught us some Lamaze breathing techniques. In labor, I tried both routes - Lamaze didn't do beans except take me AWAY from the experience. Bradley allowed me to focus in on my body, help it to work its most effectively, and to enjoy the whole experience.

It is difficult to do both methods if you really delve into and understand Bradley - they simply contradict each other too much. OTOH, I do have a close friend who uses a combination of Hypnobabies and Bradley and it works GREAT for her.

On a Bradley note, our form of 'rhythmacy' that helps me relax tremendously (without the risk of hyperventilation) is the relaxation techniques of progressive relaxation taught in Bradley. The more my uterus squeezes, the deeper I relax my body. It is very rhythmic and soothing.

If you have any more questions, just let me know! If I didn't answer any yet, just let me know!!
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  #3  
July 29th, 2006, 07:28 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
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I've only done Bradley, but my mom says it is SOOO much more sensible than Lamaze (what she did with me). She said the breathing rhythms didn't do crap for her and made her light headed. The rhythmic belly breathing with Bradley helps keep you calm and does take your mind off the pain and no risk of hyperventilation.
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  #4  
July 29th, 2006, 08:23 AM
crunchymama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I took a lamaze class for my first and even with my fourth couldn't get those stupid breathing exercises out of my head. Every time I started breathing like that I would hyperventilate. With KAe it was so bad that my whole body was pins and needles.
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  #5  
July 29th, 2006, 06:41 PM
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Sooooo, since Im pressed for time, can someone explain to me, in a nutshell, what the bradley method does...how to do it? My sis mentioned it once before, but it seemed crazy at the time. I am up for anything to help before I hit the hospital. Thanks.
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  #6  
July 29th, 2006, 06:45 PM
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What a great response from Nicole and how lucky are we to have a Bradley instructor here
I agree with her so much... That's what is so wonderful about natural childbirth is being able to experience the whole birthing process and doing what nature intended... our bodies KNOW what to do, all we have to do is listen to it
GOOD LUCK TO YOU!!
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  #7  
July 30th, 2006, 08:56 AM
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To WonderfullyMade:
I really appreciate your insight and information! I do have one more question for you though. My biggest "issue" with the bradley method is that my coach (dh) isn't going to be strong enough. Don't get me wrong, he did AWESOME the first time but it was also the first time and he didn't know nor did I know what to expect. I am only concerned because I remember him crying with my first one when I was about 7-8 cm dialated and telling him how much pain I was in. He wanted to give me the epi the first time I complained about it hurting at all because he obviously doesn't want to see me in that much pain. I definately could NOT get another coach to come with either because he would be so crushed by that! How can I keep him more focused on I guess what I need from him as a coach without offending him?? By the way, that was the book that I bought! Very impressive that you knew exactly which one I was talking about!!
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  #8  
July 30th, 2006, 11:59 AM
wonderfullymade's Avatar Doula & MW Apprentice
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Quote:
all because he obviously doesn't want to see me in that much pain. I definately could NOT get another coach to come with either because he would be so crushed by that! How can I keep him more focused on I guess what I need from him as a coach without offending him?? By the way, that was the book that I bought! Very impressive that you knew exactly which one I was talking about!![/b]
A large part of the actual series (12 weeks generally) is teaching coach (dad usually) what mom needs and when. We also talk, in depth, about the GOODNESS of contractions and reminding mom and coach how important they are. We also train coaches to understand that a LOT of women who ask for 'something to help with the discomfort' don't need drugs to help with the discomfort, but a massaging hand, a soft and kind voice, encouragement, and love.

If a coach learns that HE is what you need, he will do (and learn) everything he can to make sure he is the best of what he can offer to you.

BTW, with my first, I hit 4cm and also experienced the NAP. I was 'stuck there' for quite awhile. I began hitting transition ("I can't do this anymore", "please just give me something", "I want to be done", etc...) and dh noticed the emotional signposts but could not really believe it (after all, I was only 4cm). He was worried and admitted that he almost offered to get the anesth. for me.

With subsequent births, though, he has always known that when I hit transition (and mine are always hard transitions - with lots of doubt and insecurity, wanting to 'get something' etc...) he now just gets a big grin on his face, pushes a little harder into my hip and says 'baby, we're almost there - you will be pushing within the hour! You can do this, I am SO proud of you'. And you know what? He is always right (about the timing of the births) and he is always the only thing that I need - not a dose of meds, but a dose of HIM.

That is what we try to establish and reiterate in classes. Has he read the book? If not, try to get him to read the valid parts of it. Better yet, read it to him and relate it to your last birth. That way, you can try to 'map' your last birth together and see, together, where you were and what your needs were. This non-offensive approach can help him and you to realize your needs and your labors.
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  #9  
July 30th, 2006, 03:55 PM
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Hey there, my husband is the same way. Well, at least we are both anticipating on him "chickening out" on the being a strong coach aspect. LOL!! I'm one of those ppl that can't be bothered by others when I'm in pain. My husband is doing what I'm telling him I'll need from him. I've explained IN GREAT DETAIL about transition and how when I start the "I can't do it anymore" part that I can do it and he needs to know that it is ok that I'm saying this. I just reassure him lots and lots that I will be in pain and I'll act like there is no end in sight, but that it is normal.

I had to make a cheat sheet to remind him of all this stuff for when I go into labor because he's gonna be a nervous wreck...LOL!!
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  #10  
July 30th, 2006, 04:02 PM
wonderfullymade's Avatar Doula & MW Apprentice
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Quote:
Sooooo, since Im pressed for time, can someone explain to me, in a nutshell, what the bradley method does...how to do it? My sis mentioned it once before, but it seemed crazy at the time. I am up for anything to help before I hit the hospital. Thanks.[/b]
Check it out here.
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  #11  
July 30th, 2006, 11:09 PM
Mommyof3Hoppers's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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WonderfullyMade:
Thank you SO much for your insight! You have been a GREAT help!! My dh is VERY into reading so I am going to see if he will start reading the book tonight! I KNOW I can do this...I just want to make sure I have a coach that knows it too! Thanks again and if I come across any more questions I will probably PM you sometime if that's ok!?!?!
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  #12  
July 31st, 2006, 05:52 AM
wonderfullymade's Avatar Doula & MW Apprentice
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np - PM away!
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  #13  
July 31st, 2006, 10:15 AM
LaLa's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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The book Husband Coached Childbirth is a great book too. Its written by Dr. Bradley TO men, and gives them that boost of self esteem. Also, helping dads to see things the way us moms do, helps them be better coaches. Understanding that they can be all we need, etc.

Most guys are "fix it" guys... they want to fix it. Unprepared, they can be at a loss, and want to just give us drugs to "fix it". When they realize that this doesnt "fix it" and they know and learn other ways to fix it, then they do much better. Also - when theyre taught what to expect, they handle it better than being hit with something they werent prepared for.

Good luck, hopefully you can also find a bradley class in your area - talking with the other Husbands seems to give them a sense of relief

Lala...
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  #14  
July 31st, 2006, 10:46 AM
Mommyof3Hoppers's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I would love to actually find a bradley class in our area but the only problem there is the fact that I am due on August 9th...something tells me I DEFIANATELY wouldn't make it through the class!!! I am going to go try to find that book today though so thanks for that info!!!!
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  #15  
July 31st, 2006, 02:19 PM
LaLa's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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If theres an instructor near you she may be willing to give you a condensed course. Mine here has several ladies that are approaching their due date, and shes taking a weekend - giving them two classes each day, then giving them a class an evening over a week to make up for the lost time.

And - a lot of bradley instructors have DH's that are certified - maybe if you can meet with her & have you and DH talk to her & her DH then that will help you both out Just a thought

Lala...
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