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Perineal Massage

Forum: Natural Childbirth


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July 10th, 2006, 11:43 AM
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Elmira, NY
Posts: 101
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I was wondering if anyone was preparing their body for delivery through perineal massage. I got some great info at the midwives' office on how to perform it (or have your partner perform it) to avoid getting an episiotomy. It says that massaging oil and stretching it can result in less resistance to the birth of the head and can help you learn to relax the pelvic floor muscles. It suggests doing it every night for 6 weeks before your due date. I'm determined to have as natural a childbirth as possible and really don't want to be snipped.

Anyone have experience with this? How effective was it? Is anyone doing it now or planning on it?

Bowman --now 2 1/2
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July 10th, 2006, 11:50 AM
wonderfullymade's Avatar Doula & MW Apprentice
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Galveston, TX
Posts: 1,844
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Well, my first I had an emergency episiotomy when dd's cord was wrapped numerous times around her neck and was only 17 inches (acting like a noose). So, he performed an episiotomy so he could get to the cord and cut it, allowing her to come out the rest of the way.

Because I had an episiotomy, I tore from a 2nd degree to a 4th degree with her birth. It was painful recovery.

With subsequent births, my OB said 'you WILL tear because of the extensive scar tissue (that doesn't stretch)'. But, he was willing to work with me and allow me to tear if I chose, while also helping with perineal massage and warm compresses when the time came.

My second baby had a larger head and shoulders than the first and I didn't even have a skid mark.

My twins I had no tearing either. No episiotomies past my first experience.

I personally believe in perineal massage wholeheartedly. I start around 34weeks and continue until birth. During decent and crowning, I have my birth attendant perform perineal massage with olive oil and warm compresses/counterpressure against my perineum.

Bellies & Babies Blogger
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