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Preparing for labour: Epi-No device

July 27, 2010

2 years ago, I was meeting a pregnant friend (who also happens to be a celebrity chef btw!) for lunch when the topic of labour popped up. Please note at this stage I wasn’t even contemplating or planning a pregnancy yet!

It went something like this:

“I was totally prepared for my last pregnancy, I used this device which is basically a balloon you insert up yourself and inflate.”

“WHAT? That sounds weird…How can that be possibly safe? Where did you get it from?”

“I ordered it via the internet. It really worked as I suffered no tears and needed no stitching. I’m definitely using it for this one as well.” (Points to her pregnant belly).

As I started eating my lunch I decided not to ask anymore questions as assumed it was some kind of gimmick being sold through some eBay seller captialising on the fears of childbirth. I wasn’t totally convinced that inserting something that expands would be safe during pregnancy anyway.

So I forgot about the whole thing until last weekend when I had lunch with another girlfriend who told me her friend swore by it. Which at that point my DH looked at me to say “You better do some research into this”.

I’m trying not to think too much about labour as it scares me. It doesn’t help when everyone else I know who has been through it gives me a sympathetic look followed by their ‘horrific’ birth stories.

So even though I’m doing my pelvic floor exercises, practising pregnancy yoga and ordered Juju Sundin’s ‘Birth Skills’ book off Amazon, I can’t help thinking that maybe I should do a bit more to prepare.

So via a rather simple Google search I came across this site – and assume this is what my gfs were talking about. On their website they state:

“German innovation is making natural childbirth easier.   EPI-NO Childbirth Trainer reduces the risks of tearing, & episiotomy (stitches) during a natural birth. Used early in pregnancy to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, EPI-NO exercises change after Week 36 to prepare the perineum…EPI-NO is clinically proven to significantly increase the chances of an intact perineum, increases control during delivery, and is more effective than perineal massage.”  

I’m currently 27 weeks so I still have time to purchase this ($179 Australian!!) in time for 36 weeks to do the ‘insert/inflate’ exercise! *shiver*

What do you guys think? Has anyone else used this device with positive results?

Image courtesy of Epi-No

6 Comments leave one →
  1. July 28, 2010 3:24 pm

    Found this letter on their site as well –

  2. July 28, 2010 8:26 pm

    Oh god I have to say this sounds horrific- but if your friends swear by it must be worth a try- very interested to hear your report back!!

  3. July 29, 2010 10:01 am

    i never used it or did any ‘perineal prep’ and I didn’t tear either time (bit of grazing this time).

    You could always try perineal massage and see if you think you would then like to move on to the epi-no. It’s an uncomfortable feeling and something you might like to experience only the once (during actual childbirth)

  4. July 30, 2010 12:31 pm

    Good point Lori – better than investing in something which I’m too scared to even use! I have a couple of weeks to think about it anyway.

  5. DesertDarling permalink
    August 10, 2010 6:43 pm

    It does sound rather horrendous, but would be very interested to know how you go with it.


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