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Scared of tearing Lock Rss

Hi, im 32 1/2 wks pregnant and the thought of tearing during labour is really worrying me. I know there is not much you can do about it but my Obgyn had told me that our baby will be roughly 9.5lbs and that scares me even more, knowing we are having a big baby. Im trying to keep an open mind but can people tell me how they cope and how long it takes to recover from a tear and how much it hurts in the following days.
Hi, I got a 3rd degree tear with my first child and she was only 7lbs 4oz..... I didn't actually feel the tear happening, as everything else hurts so I just didn't notice it. My tear was apparently quiet bad, but I had no pain or discomfort whatsoever with it afterwards...... I guess the Dr who stitched me up did a good job. It did take a while to heal properly, and the idea of sex after was a bit frightening... but all was well! smile

I am 19 weeks pregnant with #2, and my midwife has suggested I do more pelvic floor exercises, as well toned muscles stretch better, and just explained that with this next birth, it needs to be controlled really well (when she say's don't push.... DON'T PUSH!!!)

Honestly, don't stress about it.... if your going to tear your going to tear, and theres not much you can do about it.... on the other hand, your bub may just sllip right out!! (fingers crossed).... Good luck.
Hi I was terrified of tearing also, especially as I used to ride track work (race horses) and that can make your perineum so tight that you hardly stretch and is common for riders to tear. However my mid wife suggested massaging some grapeseed oil or other completely natural oil into the perineum and then stretching it until the burning feling dissapears every day in the weeks leading up to the birth. Of course its not the nicest thing to do and is quite differcult with that big belly, so helpful if partner to do it. Don't know how much it works, but I had my little boy extremely fast and although I did tear it was really small and didn't require stitches, in fact I couldn't even feel it.

Liams Mum,NZ,14mth boy

Hi there,

I was afraid of tearing as well. I was told about massaging, but also found it to be a bit difficult, so didn't continue trying!! I have also heard that the midwive can help to reduce the risk of tearing as you give birth. I think it has something to do with putting pressure on the perineum or something like that. I was lucky enough not to suffer any tearing.

I also read that it can sometimes be better to tear than to be cut, as a tear will heal a lot better. Good Luck smile

Linda - mum to Riley 13.04.04 (#2 Due 29.12.05)

Hi Leeds, i too was terrified of tearing.I read everything i could on the subject. Unbelievably i got away with not a mark or anything after an 8 hour labour. I swear it was because i spent the whole labour on my hands and knees. I had read about if you lie flat on your back it increases the risk of tearing. I had a bad back so i was in too much pain but i think that being on my hands and knees helped. The midwifes kept trying to make me lie on my side or back but i would have none of it, in the end they just gave up but were really surprised when i started pushing and everything was fine, no tears! Dont want to gross you out too much but when the head starts to come out it will go back in a little bit as well each time. If you let it and dont try and keep forcing it out that may also save it tearing. Hope ive helped, at the end of the day once you see your beautiful bub you will be fine. (easy for me to say i know!)
Good luck, Jen

jen, mum to sahra born 28.6.04

Thanks for all your advice, its great to hear of everyones stories and how each of you coped. Im going to go in with an open mind and just see what the out come will be. Ive heard that you are in so much pain that even if you do tear, you dont feel it so lets wait and see. Only 7 weeks to go and counting....
Take care all and keep messaging.

Leeds and 'Jye'
Hi there!
As a first time Mum I was so worried about tearing too! Every brushed off my fears but I was so paranoid I wanted a c-section instead.
I ended up with tearing inside my uterus due to an underlying medical condition (not likely to happen to you so don't worry!) and third degree tears on the outside as Charlotte came out with her hand above her head the little bugger! All in all I had 47 stitches inside and seventeen outside (I'm only VERY little!). No, I didn't feel the tearing as you go numb after about five minutes of pushing (or at least I did!) and yes, they did hurt afterwards, but panadol worked and by the third day, the only pain is where they grab after the tear heals. The Dr will usually snip one or two and that feeling goes away.
In all honesty, you forget about the pain as soon as you see that wonderful little red and while sriggly bundle! Everything seems like a blur after that. I wish you the best of luck and if you have any more questions, e-mail me at I won't sugar coat anything and I promise to be totally honest about everything. I wish someone had of done that with me!
Hi Leeds

I know how you feel!

I can't give advice re recovering from a tear but can give some suggestions that might prevent it from happening to you.

I was too lazy to exercise when I was pregnant last time, except I made sure I did some pelvic floor exercises every day because I thought it would prevent me from tearing.

Try to stay as upright as possible whilst labouring, and if you have access to a spa use it too because I think it softens the area up.

I was lucky but really, as long as bub's is healthy, a tear isn't such a big deal in the scheme of things.

Best of luck : )

Jennifer, DS 21/06/03, DS 16/10/05

Hi Leeds I think everyone has their opinions when it comes to tears and episiotomies, I was always told tearing was better as its superficial and heals quicker & not as painful. That was until i read about 3rd degree tears and the chance of tearing upwards rather than down gasp The thought of this happening scared the living day out of me.

After failed vacuum delivery and doctors having to use forceps i had to have an episotomy at the time i was upset but afterwards thankful, i don’t think i would have gotten away with delivering an 8lbs 1oz baby without tearing. Healed in no time and with little discomfort.


Hi Leeds,
I went in to my labour not having spent 9 months worrying about the "what if's" - it is hard with everyone asking me as I was getting closer to D Day "are you getting scared" I figured what will be will be as I had not been there before" as it turned out it was a good thing I did not spend all my time worrying as I (luckily) had a 5 hour labour with an episiotimy as I had vacuum extraction - did not have a clue i had been cut and was sitting up waiting for the doctor to visit the very next day - he was very impressed. Dont spend your last days worrying and just enjoy.
It is a wonderful experience and I wish you all the best.

Abbi's mum WA
Hi Leeds,

I think the posts here are right on. As much as you can prepare and research before the birth experience, nothing can really prepare you totally because yours will be unique. The main thing is to feel confident and not too scared if you can. If you are comfortable with the place you have chosen for your birth and trust that you will be given good information, the best care and all the options so that you can deliver safely, that will help you on the day.

I did end up tearing, but honestly, it was such a minor issue in the end when the baby is there!! You will probably feel pretty exhausted and sore in general, (I did!) but the hospital staff had remedies for all the various aches and pains (panadols, frozen packs for the sore 'under-carriage' etc).

Best wishes for the big day!!! (Although you've probably already delivered??)
Hi Leeds,

I am scared of tearing too.. My friend said she didn't feel anything, and afterwards it hurt for like 4 days....

In my birth plan, I am telling my OB to not let me tear (if possible) and if he is going to do an episiotomoy to just do it and not tell me.

Ignorance is bliss I say....

Mandy, VIC, Mum of Hayley Born 02.06.05

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