April 16, 2009 By dena Leave a Comment Any birthing coach or Lamaze instructor will tell you that proper breathing is key to a positive birthing experience. Patterned breathing and relaxation become habits for life’s every day stressors.
In order to help you breath naturally during labor, here are 9 Breathing Strategies from Dr.
Patterned breathing can help you stay calm and relaxed, and is helpful for pain management. When a contraction begins, inhale deeply and slowly through your nose, and then slowly exhale through your mouth in a long, steady stream. As the contraction peaks, remind yourself to continue breathing at a relaxed, comfortable rate.

Ask your partner to remind you to slow down if you start breathing too fast in response to an intense contraction.
If you still find yourself breathing too fast, stop for a minute and take a deep breath, followed by a long, drawn-out blow, as if you are blowing off steam. Partners should watch the mother’s breathing patterns for cues as to how she is coping. As you breathe out, let your facial muscles relax and your limbs go limp as you imagine the tension leaving your body. Breathing too fast and too heavily blows off too much carbon dioxide, causing you to feel light-headed and have tingling sensations in your fingers, toes, and face.
Even during the strain of pushing, the blue in the face, blood-vessel-popping breath holding you see in movies is not only exhausting, but deprives you and your baby of much-needed oxygen.

Some women tend to hyperventilate during the height of intense contractions and need caring reminders to relax their breathing.
If you start to hyperventilate, breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth, as slowly as you can.

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