The function of pain

Even though it sounds strange: pain is a useful tool during delivery. The pain of the contractions causes the body to provide endorphin (the body’s own morphine-like substance). This hormone causes the influence of adrenaline (stress-hormone) to decrease. As a result, the uterus becomes more susceptible to the contraction-hormone oxytocin. While the contractions increase in strength, a self-enhancing process is initiated. This is comparable to an avalanche that is not stopped until your child is finally born. Thus, pain is the necessary link to make the contractions stronger and allow the delivery to proceed normally and safely.

A positive conviction and attitude towards pain helps. It gives you the strength to overcome fear and insecurity. Research has shown that women are able to cope better with the pain of delivery if they are supported by someone they trust. The partner is thus very important in this process. Aside from this, during the pregnancy caregivers try to build a bond with the mother that allows to form a trust.