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Your Healthy Family: UCHealth Memorial North, only labor and delivery unit in southern Colorado to offer Nitrous Oxide

UCHealth Memorial Hospital North is now the first hospital in southern Colorado to offer nitrous oxide, better known as laughing gas to women in labor to help manage pain. UCHealth Memorial Hospital North is now the first hospital in southern Colorado to offer nitrous oxide, better known as laughing gas to women in labor to help manage pain.
COLORADO SPRINGS -

UCHealth Memorial Hospital North is now the first hospital in southern Colorado to offer nitrous oxide, better known as laughing gas to women in labor to help manage pain.

Deborah Bopp is a Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist at UCHealth Memorial North who says the more options they can give a mom who is about to deliver, the better.  “A woman's birth experience is one of the most important experiences in her life.  It’s important she creates a plan, or an option list of what she would prefer to have happen during delivery, and we try to listen to that and do what's best for her and her baby.  At the same time we are working to make it an experience that she'll look back on and feel that it was what she wanted.”

Deborah also says that while nitrous is a new addition at Memorial North for labor and delivery it’s something that has been used in the past in other places.  “Nitrous oxide has been part of women having babies for a long time.  It was developed in the 1940's, but it fell out of vogue in the early 80’s.  Europe continued using it and we have seen a peak of interest returning in our women requesting it, midwives talking about it, and there's more about laughing gas it in the circulating literature.”

The nitrous used in a labor and delivery at memorial is a 50/50 mix with oxygen and has been shown to give women additional oxygen levels and release endorphins which can reduce a person's perception of pain.

“Nitrous is a breathing type of analgesics, meaning it's more help with pain it's not an anesthetic like you would use if you had a leg surgery so it'll take the edge off.”

Once the mom is educated about how to use the mask she has total control of when she's breathing it.

“It should only be used by the patient we don't allow family to touch it and even the nurse won't touch the mask it's the mom's decision as to when to put it on her face.  You breathe it in as a contraction ends for the next contraction and then you breathe it in until the next contraction gets to its strongest point and then you let drop the mask and you breathe air breathe all the medicine it's gone in like two or three breaths.”

Alexandra Cordero used nitrous in her delivery in May and says, “It's a mask and I can control how much I take in and if I want to take it off or not it was a lot easier and a lot better so this one I think was ten times better than my first delivery because I was able to control how much I took in.”

Extensive research has shown that nitrous has no effect on the baby and doesn't affect a woman's ability to push during labor coming up Monday in your healthy family we're going to hear more from Alexandra about her experience with nitrous and why it was the right option for her.

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