Labour & Delivery

The Simple Comb Trick That Reduces Pain During Childbirth

For some mums, childbirth can be a beautiful, enlightening experience.

For most mums, however, childbirth is extremely painful. Like “get-this-baby-out-now-before-I-hit-you-over-the-head-with-those-forceps” painful.

I fell into the latter category with all three of my babies’ births. Sure, I love my kids, but I hated childbirth. It was messy and it bloody hurt, even with #allthedrugs.

But there is a simple tool that, apparently, can help you through the labour pain and contractions. It’s a drug-free childbirth pain relief option and makes your birthing experience more bearable (enlightening, even). No, it’s not a TENS machine or a device to transfer your contractions over to your husband (wouldn’t that be GREAT!!?).

It’s a comb.

Childbirth pain relief a comb? Apparently so! 

That’s right – a cheap hair comb is the latest must-have item for your labour bag. And no, it’s not for your hair. Labouring mums are holding it during labour to help them ride the painful waves of each contraction.

According to the now-viral post on the Fox Valley Birth and Baby Facebook page: 

When gripped in your hands, a comb can help hit acupuncture points in your hands. 

It also plays into the gate control pain theory. This theory states that the brain can only focus on a select number of sensations. Because the nerve endings are closer on your hands they reach your brain faster helping your body forget about the contractions.”

The combing effect 

It’s all about transferring the pain to something else, similar to when we tell our kids to pinch themselves when they hurt a body part.

Fox Valley Birth Centre even shares a helpful photo of how to hold the comb in your hand to ensure you are hitting the right points.

childbirth pain relief using a hand comb
Source: Facebook

As all mums know, labour is certainly a pain point for us mums and the post has been shared well over 40,000 times with thousands of comments from mums who have tried it or are planning on trying it.  Many doulas also agree that, yes, the comb theory works.

And, if the labour comb trick doesn’t work for you, well, at least you have another item to throw at your husband when the time comes.

Bottom line – if you’re expecting a baby, pack a comb! It’s bound to be useful at some stage.

Looking for more things to pack in your labour bag. Have a look at our handy hospital bag checklist. 

Avatar of Jenna Galley

Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe. When the mum-of-three is not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach, bouncing her baby to sleep or nagging her older kids to put on their pants.

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