Written by Ambili Kartha
With the technological development in medical science, medical practitioners are using several new procedures and techniques to simplify or resolve complex situations. Even during the delivery of a baby, doctors take advantage of modern technologies. Entonox for labor is one of such advanced techniques used during delivery.
In many countries, doctors use Entonox or the gas and air method to reduce labor pain. This method provides relief to the patient indirectly by reducing the anxiety and tension involved in this situation. Not only in other countries, but this method is also now gaining popularity in India as well. This article will provide you the ideas on the Entonox process, how it is conducted, what are the pros and cons, and more.
In This Article
Entonox is a mixture of an oxide and oxygen, which is used to reduce the tension and anxiety of the patient during the delivery process. The oxide used is a nitrous oxide that is mixed with oxygen. Usually, 50% nitrous oxide is mixed with 50% oxygen to create Entonox. Nitrous oxide is also famous as laughing gas. It does not reduce the labor pain, but the effect of this laughing gas helps the patient to relax.
At the time of delivery, it is very common for a woman to get nervous and panicky. As the panic level increases, the pain increases and this cyclic pattern of behavior are also known as the “fear tension pain cycle.”
But whether Entonox is really helpful to reduce the pain during delivery or is it safe?
As per the studies of the National Library of Medicine, Entonox is safe during delivery and provides significant pain relief. This study also suggests that Entonox can be used during painful labor.
Doctors use Entonox whenever there is painful labor and even you can also ask for the same. This procedure requires you to breathe a mixture of air and gas through a mouthpiece or mask. Below is the step-by-step process of using Entonox.
To get the desired results, you need to practice for around 30 seconds. The reason behind, it usually takes this much time to build the gas in the bloodstream. Initially, you need to take deep breaths to enhance this system and then become normal.
The effect of Entonox starts very quickly. Usually, it only takes 2 minutes to start reflecting its effects. When you take your first few breaths of Entonox, you can feel the effect immediately.
Similarly, the effect also ends fast, as soon as you stop taking in the gas, you will not feel any effect of it.
Due to its several advantages, this is now attracting the attention of would-be parents and the medical fraternity. Here are some of the major advantages of Entonox.
Though Entonox is advantageous as every process has its own drawbacks or is not suitable for certain people, you must know the problems related to Entonox before you opt for it.
This mixture of Nitrous oxide and oxygen is not harmful to the baby and also does not have any ill effect on the mother. Due to the properties of this gas, you may feel uncomfortable and dizzy which will stop once you stop inhaling the gas mixture.
During pregnancy, Entonox gives you a light-headed feeling which in turn causes some side effects like dizziness, nausea, or vomiting. If you overdose on it, you might feel dizzy or briefly unconscious. But that is for some minutes only. The body removes this gas within 5 minutes, and you get back to normal.
Labor pain is one of the most severe types of pain and with the use of Entonox for labor, it can be reduced significantly. This mixture is effective in reducing the stress level and anxiety of the patient, which is very common inside the doctor’s chamber. Entonox is affordable, safe, and easily available.
Though it has some minor side effects, during painful delivery, doctors use this as a quick and safe remedy. Along with the analgesic effect, nitrous oxide is effective to reduce the duration of the active phase of labor which provides a happy and pleasant experience for a mother.
As per experts, Epidural analgesia gives more relief to labor pain. Entonox helps to reduce the stress level and anxiety, but cannot help to reduce the pain in the later stage. Therefore, Epidural analgesia is usually more desired.
Though there are not many extensive studies and research available on this, Entonox is considered safe for the baby and does not have any side effects.
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