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There is a belief in America that childbirth is a very painful and unpleasant experience, and because of that, many women are very afraid even before it starts to happen.

Ronald Melzack conducted a study in which he gathered results of pain during labor. He has found out that the intensity of the pain varies and is not the same in every case. In percentage, it seems that 25 % of first time mothers have experienced a severe pain, and 11 % of experienced mothers think the same way. 17 % of mothers have experienced labor as easy and tolerating in pain.

To many women who are about to have their first baby, labor presents their first physical pain, and hence, the trouble with dealing with it. Women who have had some other medical conditions such as toothaches, kidney stones, Lyme disease and conditions characterized by similar pain insensitivity, range labor pain as one of the most bearable pains in comparison to others. But, we are not all the same, and we cope with pain each one in its own way.

Pain in labor

There are certain factors that contribute to the intensity of pain during labor. A scientist, Lederman conducted a research in which he included women who had experienced labor and got some answers. According to him, a woman is more likely to have a painful labor if it is her first time, if she has less education, if she is a younger, if she has menstrual problems. Other factors that can contribute to painful labor include miscarriage, some psychological problems, and trouble with accepting the fact that it isn’t painful experience at all. The ability to accept the pain and try to deal with it can help a lot in labor, but it is also important to have people around you during a labor. It means that doctors, nurses and midwifes can really help, because they know and are familiar with every step of labor.

Nowadays, we have a job position that is called doula. It is a professional childbirth assistant, whose job is to be with the mother and help her if necessary. A woman has to accept that there is pain in labor and deal with it. It does not necessarily mean that her labor will last long, or have some problems; it is just the way it is. There is also a possibility of anesthesia during labor, and in that way, a woman does not feel pain at all.


A woman can prepare for labor and therefore reduce the fear, panic, and a feeling of unknown. She should find out from available sources everything that she can about labor and pain intensity, so that she could know what to expect. She should start preparing her body for the forthcoming changes and do the exercises that could be helpful in pain relief.

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