I teach Prenatal Yoga at CNY Healing Arts in Rochester, NY. The girls are always asking me for advice on achieving a more comfortable labor and childbirth experience. My answer is always…come to as much prenatal yoga as you can!!! Another piece of advice I give to the girls is something so simple and easily accessible, whether your at a hospital or home for the birth of the baby you can use heat and cold to ease labor sensations!
Both Heat and Cold can be used to reduce pain and increase comfort during labor and childbirth. Very often the laboring woman will have a strong preference for one or the other.
When I was in labor for the birth of my son, the mantra that surged through my body was “more cold packs!”. I kept my husband, sister, mother, doula and midwife very busy. They had a chain of hands going from the ice bucket, which contained wet icy-cool rags, straight to my back. I was Hot and my body seemed to heat those cold rags in a flash. The cold rags seemed to make a huge difference in my comfort. I was able to have a completely natural childbirth without any medications or interventions with the help of natural positioning options and the use of Heat and Cold! My advice to you is to follow your instincts. Your body will tell you what to do and what you need. My body screamed “more cold packs” and my family still jokes about how their hands went numb trying to keep me cool and comfortable during labor.
Caution: A laboring woman’s sense of temperature is altered by labor. Never place a hot pack on any area of the body affected by an epidural or anesthesia!
* Decreases local blood flow
* Decreases local skin and muscle temperature
* Decreases tissue metabolism
* Decreases muscle spasms
* Slows the transmission of impulses over afferent neurons, leading to decreases sensation
* Increases local blood flow
* Increases local skin and muscle temperature
* Increases tissue metabolism
* Decreases muscle spasms
* Relaxes tiny muscles in skin (hair follicles, capillaries)
* Raises pain threshold
Using HEAT and COLD together!
Good luck and have a blissful labor and childbirth experience!
Namaste or “mamaste”,
Christa Tyson, Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga Instructor and Birth Doula
CNY Healing Arts- Rochester NY
Yoga classes at CNY Healing Arts in Rochester:
Mon 6:15-7:30pm, Wed 5-6:15pm, Sat 10:15-11:30am
All Levels Yoga: Mon 5:00-6:00pm, Wed 6:30-7:45pm
Baby and Parent Yoga: Sat 9:00-10:00am
Yoga for Fertility: Thursday 6-8:00pm
CNY Healing Arts: Indoor and Outdoor Yoga Studios
2244 East Ave, Rochester NY 14610