Maybe not! Use of peanut balls for laboring women has become common in hospitals in the United States. The peanut ball is shaped like a peanut and fits snugly between the woman’s legs so that both legs are maintained as opening the pelvic outlet to increase the progress of labour and facilitate descent of the fetal head. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000331.pub3, Carseldine, W. J., Phipps, H., Zawada, S. F., Campbell, N. T., Ludlow, J. P., Krishnan, S. Y. and De Vries, B. S. (2013), Does occiput posterior position in the second stage of labour increase the operative delivery rate?. In preparing for this article, I read through over 30 online birth stories that included the peanut ball and noticed a few common themes: Moms who were unmedicated preferred upright positions to the peanut ball nearly every time. Peanut ball use did not alter length of pushing time for either group, p > 0.05. The ball is placed between the woman’s legs to increase the width of the pelvic diameter. How Does A Peanut Ball Help During Labour? Over 170cm (5ft 8in) or you’re a plus size, you might find a 60cm peanut ball most comfortable Peanut balls larger than 60cm are typically recommended only to sit or rest on, and might not offer any more benefits than a regular birth ball. Where to obtain hospital grade latex free peanut balls. The peanut ball is shaped like a peanut and fits snugly between the woman’s legs so that both legs are maintained as opening the pelvic outlet to increase the progress of labour and facilitate descent of the fetal head. © Maternal Focus For example, one mom described it like this: "Being positioned on the peanut ball was excruciating, I couldnt see straight and was howling in agony. Having the wrong size Peanut Ball can cause a few problems: Heather Turner, our authorized peanut ball trainer, produced some very informative videos that are incredibly helpful for learning to use the peanut ball. We experiment with different positions to find a variation that is comfortable, reminding the parents that what they like now may not be the one they like in labor. No. This is where I recently integrated teaching about the peanut ball into my classes. : CD002006. I think it's important that the mom's care team be aware of and comfortable with the use of the peanut ball, so I make sure we talk about it before we try it at the birth. - Sharon Muza, Science & Sensibility Community Manager. If your height is between 160 cm to 170 cm (5 ft 3 in to 5 ft 7 in) use a 50 cm peanut ball. She finds that the ball is "most beneficial for moms who are not able to change positions frequently and utilize gravity (i.e. Art. Use solo or with a friend. She also will occasionally use it while mom is on the bed on all fours as a place to rest mom's upper body that is not as high as a regular birth ball. The peanut ball is most commonly used when mom needs to remain in the bed, whether because of epidural use, complications, or simply because mom is exhausted. Me. If you are concerned that you will fall off the birth ball, consider buying an alternative – the peanut ball. It comes in variety of sizes. In addition, this project was designed to incorporate qualitative data on women’s perception of using the Peanut Ball during labor. Teaching this technique in your childbirth class can help women go back to their care providers and birth places informed about another option that is becoming more and more widely available. In my search, I found one study, presented as a poster presentation at the 2011 AWHONN Convention. Kemp E, Kingswood CJ, Kibuka M, Thornton JG. Clinical implications: Use of peanut balls may reduce total labor time to a greater degree in primiparous patients than multiparous patients having elective induction at ≥39 weeks with epidural analgesia. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD002006.pub3. It’s very important to not let the ankle hang. To learn more about Sharon, you are invited to visit her website, Carly Trythall, a nurse at the University of Utah Hospital in Salt Lake City, has worked with the peanut ball for labor in two different hospitals in her career as a nurse. Best video on the 7 different peanut ball positions. There is not much research out there on the use of the peanut ball. ALSO SEE: The pros and cons of epidurals . Since it is known that babies in an Occiput Posterior (OP) position can increase the length of second stage and the rate of operative delivery (Lieberman, 2013; Caseldine, 2013) the reports of posterior babies turning when the peanut ball is used may be a big reason for its effectiveness. Uses: A peanut ball is like an exercise ball, but is shaped like a peanut. (Women with epidurals usually switch side to side with the same frequency, even without the epidural.) No. No photos may be copied. A shorter labor? A small research conducted on the peanut ball and epidural usage in the year 2015 supported that approximately 21 per cent of women with epidural but no peanut ball usage, had to go for a C-section delivery. Resources for peanut ball in-services . Have you had personal experiences either as a birthing mother or a professional with the peanut balls? Sharon Muza, BS, LCCE, FACCE, CD/BDT(DONA), CLE has been an active perinatal professional since 2004, teaching Lamaze classes to thousands of families and doula-ing through her private practice in Seattle, WA. We allow enough time for every mom who wants to experience the 2 main positions with the peanut to try them. Lawrence A, Lewis L, Hofmeyr GJ, Styles C. (2013) Maternal positions and mobility during first stage labour. Settle right in to the curved saddle seat of our Peanut Ball! The project question was “For laboring women, will use of a Peanut Ball … Some commented that it was difficult to sleep when needing to switch the ball from side to side. The purpose for this capstone project was to use a Peanut Ball, to mimic a sitting or squatting position, for decreasing length of first and second stages of labor.