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Pain Management During Labor and Delivery

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Your pain management options at St. Luke’s

We know each mom-to-be has unique needs and desires. That’s why we want to give you all the information you need to make an informed decision about how you’d like to manage the natural pain that comes with labor and delivery. At St. Luke's Birthing Center, we offer a variety of pain management techniques ranging from non-interventional to pharmacological (medication-related). Below is what you need to know about each option.

Non and low-intervention

Many women want to have a natural or low-intervention childbirth. This means they’d rather find alternatives to medication for managing pain. At St. Luke’s we can provide a natural birth experience while still offering the safety of a Birthing Center. Here are some of our non-pharmacological options for managing pain:

Nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide is one of the most popular non-invasive pain management options. This tasteless, odorless gas is administered through a mask, giving delivering moms the control over how much they take in and when. This option is considered a lower intervention because of how quickly the medication enters and leaves the system. This pain management option is safe for both mom and baby.

Nitrous oxide will not be available during the COVID-19 pandemic due to safety precautions.

IV pain medication

IV pain medication is meant to be administered during the early stages of labor to help ease the pain of contractions. This pain management technique is also appropriate for those experiencing prolonged labor by providing a sense of relaxation and relief.


An epidural is when medication is administered through a spinal injection for ongoing pain relief throughout labor and delivery. This pain management option causes a loss of feeling in the lower half of the body while mom remains conscious and alert.

Spinal anesthesia

This pain management option also provides pain relief by injection. Similar to an epidural, spinal anesthesia numbs the bottom half of the body during a c-section, also allowing mom to remain alert throughout delivery.

General anesthesia

If spinal anesthesia is not working properly or if mom or baby’s health is a concern, general anesthesia may be administered during a c-section. If general anesthesia is used, mom will not be conscious during the delivery.

Labor and delivery in Duluth, Minnesota

At St. Luke's Birthing Center, we are committed to providing you with the customized birth experience you’ve always dreamed about. To do this, we make it a priority to exceed the highest standards of care and seek the training we need to best serve our patients.

To learn more about St. Luke’s Birthing Center or establish care with a provider, visit our website.