In the final hours of your baby being born, it’s important to be fully aware of what to expect, how to cope with contractions, and what your body is doing during this time.
An epidural is the most effective form of pain relief in childbirth. It can only be administered by an anaesthetist, and for that reason it’s only available in hospital, which means it won’t be an option if you’re planning to give birth at home or in a birth centre. Occasionally, there are situations in hospital where an epidural won’t be possible, either due to your stage of labour, or because of medical issues that would make the procedure unsafe. Your midwife, obstetrician or anaesthetist will be able to discuss this with you in more detail.