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I knew from the get-go what type of pain management I would be having when giving birth to my 2nd daughter. Even though I had a vaginal delivery both times, the pain was less the 2nd go around and all I took was Ibuprofen and Tylenol. The nurses did give me oxycodone during my 1st delivery, but it did nothing for pain and actually made me feel sick. I opted to never take another one of those again since Ibuprofen and ice were enough to relieve my pain.
But, what happens if you have a C-section? Do you have a choice?
You actually do have a choice, but most people don’t know this. Be sure to come up with a plan of action on which medication(s) you should take if an emergency or a planned C-section occurs.
Of course, C-sections are a major abdominal surgery and requires medicine to relieve the pain, but it doesn’t have to be an opioid, it can be a rotation between Tylenol and Ibuprofen, or
other non-opioid options as well.
Using non-opioid options also eliminates the risk of unpleasant side effects that often go hand-in-hand with opioid use, such as nausea, constipation, and vomiting, enabling new mothers to recover quicker and allowing them to spend quality time with their newborn as soon as possible.
Opioids are also extremely addictive, in fact, my sister got addicted to them during her first pregnancy and then it all went downhill from there. Addiction is a big problem in America. It affects millions of people, but together, we can reduce the devastation if we start with prevention.
The Role of Opioids in Childbirth: A Survey of Moms’ Perceptions for Managing Pain
• More than 1 in 3 women had C-section deliveries; overall, 1 in 5 C-sections were unplanned
• More than 1 in 3 (36%) women did not have a birth plan, which is an opportune time for a patient to speak with their doctor about pain management options, including non-opioids
• 38% of women are open to pain management options, but think some kinds of pain medications are, or could be, harmful to them or their baby
Opioids and childbirth:
• 19% believe they are fine for other procedures, but not childbirth
• 25% believe they will be able to handle the pain without opioids
• 21% have no issue taking opioids
• 35% prefer to let their doctors decide what is best
• Nearly nine-in-ten (88%) of mothers have concerns about taking opioids during and after childbirth. Despite these concerns, more than half (51%) of C-section patients are prescribed an opioid.
Leading concerns surrounding opioids and childbirth:
• Breastfeeding/impact on baby: 53%
• Side effects: 52%
• Nearly a quarter (24%) of those surveyed fear the risk of dependence or addiction
• While C-section patients had more opioids and anesthetics in the hospital and at home, they were less satisfied with their overall pain management
• 44% of C-section mothers were not completely satisfied with how their pain was managed during birth
Visit planagainstpain.com for information on non-opioid pain-relieving options following C-section surgery and various other procedures.