You breathe in entonox through a mouthpiece or mask at the start of each contraction. Many women find that it reduces the sharpness of the pain.
What’s good about it?
What’s not so good?
TENS is transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. A TENS machine is a small battery-powered box with wires attached to four pads that stick to your lower back. It sends small electrical pulses that block the pain messages to your brain. Some women find that it helps them to cope with contractions or back pain in early labour.
Soaking in a deep, warm bath can be very soothing. Many hospitals now have birthing pools, and you can either give birth in the water or just use it for pain relief.
If you're giving birth at home, you can hire or buy a birthing pool.
These are injections of drugs, such as pethidine or diamorphine, directly into the muscle in your thigh or bottom. An intramuscular injection takes about 20 minutes to work, and lasts for between two and four hours.
What’s good about them?