For anyone who has ever had an epidural..

Ok pleeeeease tell me honestly

Does it hurt having the epi as much as I have been led to believe?

Would you do it again?

I am only 16 weeks but am starting to get quite scared abot having to give birth and what makes it worse is that I'm horrible with needles and the thought of that freeking long needle going into my spine scares the living crap out of me! But I know I need to get myself used to the idea... so please let me have your honest thoughts!

Abby (16+1)


  • Hi Abby,

    I have been told by everyone I have asked that the epi does nt hurt. They will give it to you whilst you are having a contraction so you will not feel it.
    Honestly hun you don't need to worry, plus you won't be able to see the needle image

  • Hiya babe!

    I am having it for the 3rd time and I am a complete coward so it cant be that bad!!! The 1st time I had it I must admit I was under the influence of gas and air and I cant remember feeling anything then the 2nd time I had a complete dickhead who couldnt do it attempt twice (it did hurt then) but the midwife gave his a telling off then when the "proper" man came in I didnt even notice he had done it!

    I think its worse when you worry too much because you tense up and they are stood there with a big needle saying "relax". Yeah right!

    You will be fine!!!
  • I've had one and it didn't hurt a bit. The worst part was worrying and trying to keep still. I didn't even see the needle or feel it go in and it really helped as by then I'd been in labour for about 2 days and finally got to have some sleep!!

    Hopefully you won't need one and even if you do it's nothing at all like you imagine. Hope it all goes well for you.

    Rebecca x

  • I'll be on my 3rd this time around along with around 3 spinal blocks on separate occasions.

    To be honest, if I think about it I still get freaked out - knowing what it is and where it's going is just not normal!

    However, I have always been fine - the only thing that caught me unawares was when it touched a nerve and my leg jolted out! If you've got a good team they will talk you through it and have it done in no time - I've had all mine done 'cold' as it were before sections so was fully aware. I've heard ladies say that they didn't even particularly notice it if they were inbetween contractions - just the sheer relief of it working!

    Good luck hon - really, don't let it spoil your pregnancy.

  • Hi Abby. It really is not that bad when you compare it to the contractions your having at the time! Its only the anasthetic (sp?!) that stings a bit, after that you cant feel anything. I had Gas and air while they put mine in and that helped alot. The one thing I will say is that it is absolutely essential that you keep still so when you think you need an epidural say then and not an hour later when the contractions are so strong you cant keep still!
  • Hi abbyc

    I'm 17+1 so not far ahead of you. This is my first so not had an eipdural before but I'm guessing by the time I need one, I'm going to be in so much pain anyway, I'll gladly let someone stick a large needle in my spine if it means a bit of pain relief :lol: Which is funny because when you think of it now, it sounds horrific! Mind you, I think I will ask them not to show me the needle - I think I might freak out on the spot seeing that. I'm quite squemish (if that's spelt right) so I don't think I'll really want to see anything that's going on 'down there' - some people have mirrors and videos made of the whole thing - not really my cup of tea :lol:
  • one word for it is fantastic! even tho i did need help getting baby out, but it's brill if you are tired if it has been a long labour, one min i was rolling about in pain the next i was sat up drinking tea, id defo have it again, i didnt feel it going in as i was so busy thinking about my contractions, good luck hun x

  • Hi

    I had to have 1 and I didn't even feel them doing it!! I had been in active labour for around 6 hours so by that point the epidural was nothing compared to what I had been feeling. Having said all that I am hoping not to have one when I have another baby but thats nothing due to the pain of it(or lack of pain) but because I didn't want one the first time round but had no choice this time round I hope to have a choice and go completely natural.
  • I had an epidural when I had my lad 6 months ago and honestly you CAN'T feel a thing! They give you a local anasthetic 1st before the epidural needle, then you get like a warm bubbly feeling up your legs then you cant feel anything! Its great! Mine was at number 12 (whatever that means) until I got to 10cm then they turned it down to 8 so I could feel the pushing sensation but still no pain! I would definatly have it again! And just so you know, my phobia for needles is so bad that I had a panic attack when I had my TB, so if I can do it, anyone can! xx
  • I thought an epidural was marvelous!!! Went from being in agony to no pain in about 2 contractions!!! Would def take one again.
  • I've had 2 and they were about to put 3rd one in for Violet but were arguing as I had been given Vitamin K in the last few weeks of pregnancy due to OC and whilst arguing told them I needed a poo...but didn't gave birth instead lol.

    They numb you first with a local anyway before the big needle goes in - believe me it is far worse for your partner as they actually see the size of the needle!!
  • I had an epidural with my first and I'm terrified of needles but like a lot of the ladies on here, I was in so much pain with the contractions it's nothing in comparison, and afterwards I was able to relax and even have a sleep before I pushed the baby out!! I will definitely ask for one again this time round if I need it.
    Helen 25 + 3
  • I told eveyone that under no circumstances did I want an epidural no matter how much pain I was in, but 12 hrs into the labour I couldnt cope anymore. I had already had diamorphine which was wearing off so mw suggested epidural and cos the diamorphine was still working when the consultant anethetist administered the epi I didnt feel it. I was shaking loads cos i was so scared but it went in first time and I still felt when I needed to push which was good. Im also pleased I had it cos I needed to go to theatre after giving birth so all they had to do was top up the epidural rather than giving me different pain releif. I found it amazing and dont think I could have pushed joshua out without it xxx
  • hi i had an epi only a few days ago!!!
    i was also against it and so was my oh but when i was in labour both me n kirk ended up begging for it at 3cm i got it at 5cm and summer was born 15 mins later!!!
    it didnt hurt at all i just felt some pushing on my back thats all i will never give birth without one i still knew when to push and defo felt her coming out!!!!
    good luck
    vicky n summer xxx
  • hia hun,i was in hospital 2 wks ago n had to have a spinal,i too am terrified of needles but honestly it didnt hurt.The canular in my hand hurt alot more.If you do need to have 1 pls dnt be scared n dnt listen to any1 elses horror stories. hanna almost 38wks xx
  • Oooh thank you all so much for your replies (sorry first chance I've had to log on since I posted that) You have all calmed me down quite a lot but I'd never even heard of a canular!! So 2 bleeding needles then?!

    I think I'm generally just getting myself quite twitchy about the whole thing - and i'm only 16 weeks!

    I think i'm just going to take everything one stage at a time - have my 16 week mw appt on thurs and hoping to be able to hear baby's heartbeat (in that interim stage after first scan and before 20 wk scan when not really feeling pg so am really looking forward to that) and will then try and take things week by week and not focus too much on labour

    Perhaps baba will just come out when I am asleep one night without me noticing a thing? image lol

    Abs xxx
  • I had one with my first and it was fine, I'd been have contractions for 2 days by then, had gas and air and 3 shots of pethadine so it was a relief. The only thing was I am allergic to the tape and latex, which they knew but still used and even now the spot where it went in still itches!!
  • I just had my baby and have to say an epidural is brilliant. I had one when I was 3cm and the pain went away entirely, but I could still move my legs and feel everything going on. The needle doesnt hurt at all - not compared to contractions believe me they are what hurts!!! Oh - and they won't give it you during a contraction - because you have to keep VERY still so they can get it in the right place. You will probably have gas and air by that point so use that while its going in.
  • I had an epi 10 years ago with my son and was a very whimpey 17 year old and it really did not hurt at all, think you are to way laid with the whole situation to focus on it to be honest.
  • It is truly wonderful
    I had one even though I have previously undergone spinal surgery and have scar tissue in the exact place they need to insert, didn't feel the needle at all. Gave birth naturally & pushed pain free.
    My advise is enjoy your pregnancy and worry about it when the time comes, you'll know what's right for you then.
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