Guest post by Ann Sawdo, BabyCountdown
This subject has been bothering me for a while. BabyCountdown has been very busy lately with babies being born. I do understand there are medical reasons for induction. I also understand we get very anxious the closer we get to our due dates. Only in my opinion though, do I think Pitocin is the most overused and unnecessary drug during labor and delivery. Pitocin was another one of my many reasons to birth at home, far from unnecessary interventions that I was sure because of my age the hospital would have forced on me.
What exactly is my problem with Pitocin?
Pitocin is the name of a synthetic hormone to replace the hormone our bodies make naturally.
Oxytocin, your body’s natural hormone, is secreted in bursts. However, when you are given this synthetic-Pitocin, you are placed on a regulated intravenous pump to regulate the amount of Pitocin to a steady flow. Therefore, Pitocin-induced contractions are different from your body’s natural contractions, in strength and effect. Pitocin alters the induced force of the contraction and may decrease uterine blood flow. This is reducing the oxygen to the baby.
Pitocin can be the beginning domino in the domino effect. The IV, the infusion pump, and the continuous monitoring will confine most mothers to bed, decreasing her ability to deal with the contractions naturally. The more painful contractions a mother is more likely to need pain medication, such as an epidural anesthesia. About 80% of women who have had Pitocin say that there is more pain with Pitocin than without. Unlike natural contractions, you do not get the slow build up with Pitocin induced contractions.
Pitocin also presents other issues. The mother may experience one or all of these: tumultuous labor and tetanic contractions, which may cause premature separation of the placenta, rupture of the uterus, laceration of the cervix or post birth hemorrhage.
Baby issues include: fetal asphyxia and neonatal hypoxia from too frequent and prolonged uterine contractions, physical injury and prematurity if the due date is not accurate.
This is just the short version on why Pitocin is not good for you, the mother, or for your baby. Please think twice before you allow a caregiver to administer this drug to you during labor.
To learn more about the recent study on Pitocin Risks on Huffington Post Parents