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How To Avoid Tearing During Labor

Most folx tear (or have perineal lacerations) during labor when the head comes down the vaginal canal & it is too large for the vagina to stretch around. Folx who are having their first births or going through labor too quickly tend to tear. But not at folx tear.

The following this can help prevent deep tearing:

During Pregnancy

🔸Do deep squats during the last trimester to allow the weight of the baby to put pressure on your pelvic floor muscles, including your perineum. In a way, this is like a warm-up stretch for childbirth.

🔸You can also try perineal massage using your favorite warm oil. Perineal massage is the act of stretching and manipulating the perineal tissue using one or two fingers

🔸Ask your doula doctor or midwife about this relaxing, pre-birth ritual.

🔸During your pregnancy visits, ask your doctor how they deal with tears and if they have recommendations on avoiding tearing.

🔸Also ask if they routinely perform episiotomies. 🚩 🚩 🚩 🚩

Routine episiotomies are no longer recommended. From this conversation, you will get an idea if they will help you during labor to do all they can to help you prevent tearing.

🔸Hire a doula. If you’re nervous about childbirth, hire a doula. We are well-trained birth assistants who are with pregnant folks during pregnancy to discuss their birth plan. They may also be trained in perineal massage.

During delivery day

🔹Spend some of your labor in warm water/shower. It will keep you relaxed & reducing your chances to tear.

🔹Keep perineum warm. Ask a partner, Midwife/Dr. or doula to help you by providing a warm compress. The warmth allows the skin and muscles to relax, making the perineum more likely to stretch open for the baby’s passage.


🔻If you can pant and give small, short pushes or slowly exhale as your push while doing your best to keep your pelvic floor muscles relaxed, you will be able to reduce your chance of tearing.

Avoid Episiotomies

Lastly, make sure your birth partner knows your wishes about avoiding an episiotomy. The statistics show that episiotomies increase the risk of a third or fourth degree tear.

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