The pain of labour: Perspectives of traditional birth attendants in Edo State, Nigeria

  • C.O. Imarengiaye
  • G.U. Otojahi
  • T.N. Otene
  • V.Y. Adam

Abstract

Objective: To determine the concept of labour pain and its relief in a cultural setting using the perspectives of Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs).
Design: Cross Sectional Comparative Study.
Setting: An urban area (Benin City) and a semi-urban town (Auchi) in Edo State, Nigeria.
Subjects: Traditional Birth Attendants in an urban area (Benin City) and a  semi-urban town (Auchi) were identified using  information from a local directory and a respondent driven sampling method.
Results: A total of 58 TBAs (37 in Benin and 21 in Auchi) were interviewed. Most
TBAs, 36 (97.3%) in Benin and 21 (100.0%) in Auchi, agreed that there is pain during labour. Almost all the TBAs, 34 (94.4%) in Benin and 21 (100,0%) in Auchi, reported that labour pain could be severe. Most of the TBAs, 31(83.8%) in Benin and 20 (95.2%) in Auchi reported that their clients request for pain relief in labour. Use of oral herbs was the most common method of pain relief in labour amongst the TBAs, 12(32.2%) in Benin and 20(100.0%) in Auchi. Most of the TBAs in Benin, 19(61.3%) offer nothing for labour pain, when pain relief is sought by their clients.
Conclusion: Labour is considered painful in our culture and most women desire relief. TBAs in semi-urban setting used herbal remedies more readily than their urban counterparts. Efforts should be made at providing comfort to all women in labour irrespective of the location of delivery.
Published
2017-04-18
Section
Articles

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eISSN: 0012-835X