Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Birthing and stress

28.05.2002


Giving birth is clearly a high-stress experience. But usually it involves positive stress, which helps the woman cope with the exigencies of delivery and prepares the baby for a life outside the mother’s womb.” These are the words of Siw Alehagen from Linköping University, Sweden, who has written a dissertation about fear, pain, and stress hormones in women giving birth. Among other things, she has performed studies during actual delivery, a method that few researchers have dared to attempt anywhere in the world.

Siw Alehagen’s dissertation work started with the construction of an instrument of measurement--a series of questions--to measure the degree of fear women experience in giving birth. She then used this instrument and combined it with urine and saliva samples at the end of pregnancy, each hour during delivery, and on three occasions after delivery.

The stress hormones metered in the samples were adrenalin, noradrenalin, and cortisol. Adrenalin and cortisol, which mark mental stress, increased by up to 1,000 percent in some women during phases of delivery. Noradrenalin content, which above all marks physical stress, did not increase nearly as much. According to Siw Alehagen, this indicates that birthing stress is not primarily physical but mental.



Siw Alehagen also found that pain and cortisol levels rose in the course of delivery in women who did not receive epidural anesthesia. Women who did receive this anesthesia initially experience less fear and pain, and evinced lower hormone levels. However, in the final phases of delivery, pain and fear also increased among these women.

Those women who were most frightened before receiving anesthesia were those who had the most negative impression of birthing afterward. Women who were truly frightened viewed birthing as a threat, experienced it negatively while it was happening (regardless of anesthesia), and saw it in retrospect as something unpleasant or terrifying. Siw Alehagen sees this as a justification of efforts in maternal care to identify women who are afraid of their approaching delivery and to offer them support and treatment. Care during delivery should be flexible and individual, geared to bolstering the self-confidence of the woman, thereby reducing her fear.

Ingela Björck | alphagalileo

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht The end of pneumonia? New vaccine offers hope
23.10.2017 | University at Buffalo

nachricht Scientists track ovarian cancers to site of origin: Fallopian tubes
23.10.2017 | Johns Hopkins Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Salmonella as a tumour medication

HZI researchers developed a bacterial strain that can be used in cancer therapy

Salmonellae are dangerous pathogens that enter the body via contaminated food and can cause severe infections. But these bacteria are also known to target...

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

3rd Symposium on Driving Simulation

23.10.2017 | Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Microfluidics probe 'cholesterol' of the oil industry

23.10.2017 | Life Sciences

Gamma rays will reach beyond the limits of light

23.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

The end of pneumonia? New vaccine offers hope

23.10.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>