- How do I know when to push?
- What if I don’t feel the urge to push?
- How long will it take to push out my baby?
- Will I poop in front of everybody?
- How can I prevent tearing?
These five fantastic pushing questions are discussed in almost every childbirth class I teach.
So, let’s discuss them here, shall we?
How do you know when to push?
Well, there are a few answers to this question. The easiest answer is when your body just does it. I know that’s not too helpful for those who are pregnant and never pushed out a baby before, but pushing can be compared to a sneeze or vomiting.
Pushing is an involuntary response. It can actually be hard to NOT push, when your body is pushing.
Sometimes if a woman has an epidural, she will not feel the urge to push. So in her case, she will know when to push when her nurse or doc says so.
A lot of times with an epidural birth they will let the mom “labor down” before beginning the pushing stage. Basically, this means they are letting the baby come down on its own without pushing (after a mom is fully dilated). Since it usually takes a lot longer to push out your baby with an epidural, “laboring down” helps your body do some of the early work so you don’t have to.
What if you don’t feel the urge to push?
This questions assumes that you have had a vaginal check, you are 10 cm and that you don’t feel like pushing or bearing down. What’s a gal to do?
If something isn’t working, try something new!
Well, you could change positions. If you have been lying down, try standing up, squatting, getting into the tub, walking, hoolahooping, lunges, etc.
If after trying some position changes and you feel no urge to push, you could just do nothing. If you and the baby are fine, I mean, it’s not an emergency.
If you are over it and ready to see your baby (duh) try bearing down a little and see how that feels. Sometimes women don’t feel an overwhelming urge to push and bearing down a little during contractions helps. Someone who was in one of my classes said that with her last baby she never felt the urge, but she decided to push anyways and her baby practically fell out.
|Here I am pushing with everything I had.|
How long will it take to push out my baby?
Let’s see… my vaginal crystal ball says… 30 minutes. Oh, wait… 90 minutes. I mean 180 minutes.
I have no idea!
For the first time mom it is usually a longer process – 1.5 hours and longer. It could definitely be longer. Like 4-5 hours…
But, both second time moms in my current childbirth class took about 30 minutes for their first babies. So, your guess is as good as mine.
To speed up the pushing process, however, try an upright position and make sure you’re off your back!
Will I poop in front of everybody?
If you have ever looked at the anatomy of a pregnant woman you can see that to push your baby out, your baby’s head will be pushing EVERYTHING out of you.
When I see/smell poop during the pushing phase at birth I get excited because I know she is pushing correctly and making great progress!
To birth professionals, it’s a no big deal type of thing, but to a pregnant mom this might be giving you nightmares.
Let’s Talk More About Pooping
What would this mean to you if that happened? What would you tell yourself about yourself?
Think about that for a moment. What would your I AM statement be if you pooped when you pushed out your baby?
I AM _____________.
Now, take another moment and think about if that I am statement is serving you. No? Ok, then what would you like to tell yourself about yourself if you were working really hard, pushing with all you had, bringing your baby down and you pooped.
I AM ________________. See if you could look at this potential situation with new eyes, eyes of love and acceptance.
How can I prevent tearing?
Head on over here to read a great article about how to prevent tearing at birth. You’ll be surprised at what you read!
What About You?
Those are some good questions about pushing that I thought of. What new questions do you have now that you read this post?
Let me know what you think by leaving a comment.
Here’s my experience with pushing before feeling the urge to push.