As if preparing for labour and birth in Singapore wasn’t daunting enough without having to worry about birth plans, hospital choices and insurance for you and the baby, let’s add: what products should you buy for your pregnancy and your baby? There’s mountains of information, opinions and advice that makes you wonder: “Am I a bad parent if I don’t buy this or do that?”. That’s why we’re here! Taking a hit for the team, I review the one pregnancy gadget that promises to deliver a seamless birth – the Epi-no.
What on Earth is an Epi-no?
Pop your safe-search on before you Google this one, ladies – NSFW alert. The Epi-no my dears, is a gift to your vagina. In brief it’s an industrial strength balloon attached to a bicycle pump. You insert the balloon up your vagina and slowly pump it up, for 10 minutes each session, over the course of two weeks until it gets to the size of a baby’s head (let’s just pause for a minute to reflect). The idea is to prepare your vagina for the human head that will soon pass through it: without the need for an episiotomy. This gadget laughs in the face of perineum massages.
Ordering the Epi-no is the easy bit
My Epi-no arrived within days! It’s the fastest delivery I’ve had to date (no pun intended). My husband was both intrigued and terrified unboxing the gadget. If, after reading this, you feel game and your vagina hasn’t shut tight like a giant clam, please do order your Epi-no directly from the supplier – this is not the product to be buying from Carousel or EziBuy, and don’t even think DIY hack.
The verdict: Epi-no or Epi-yes?
Before we go on, allow me to clarify that my obstetrician gave me the go-ahead to use Epi-no – I recommend you speak to your Obgyn too. Look, I’m gonna be honest here, OUCH. It almost guarantees pre-labour anxiety! As my doula said (yes, sisters, get yourself a doula!), when you go into labour for real, the endorphins will kick in to ease the pain – the Epi-no is like punching yourself in the hoo-haa without the endorphin chaser. I did however go a little too hard a little too soon (kiasu-mum, right from the start!), so you can go a little slower if you like. You do get used to it, and it’s really not so bad.
Epi-no and kegels: an added bonus
Kegels are the pelvic floor exercise that keep your panties dry. Kegels feel weird, but we know we should do them. The Epi-no can also be used before, during, and after pregnancy to strengthen your pelvic muscles. It’s a real power workout.
The punch line
So how did I go? Well, after stretching my vagina to 7.9cm with my Epi-no, I had an emergency c-section – d’oh! All’s well that ended well.
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