In a previous thread, there was a mention of warm compresses and massage during birth, to help the perineum to stretch (actually, it was more of a question).
I'm looking for some evidence regarding the use of mineral oil, specifically. I have heard that the use of mineral oil during 2nd stage labor can actually lead to tears; this belief is generated by the understanding that mineral oil is not good for the skin, is drying, etc. On the other hand, I have heard of midwives who boast of using mineral oil during labor in order to prevent the need for episiotomy.
Is there any evidence for either the effectiveness or anti-effectiveness of mineral oil massage during labor? Or, as Henci mentioned in the previous thread, is it similar to the main benefit of warm compresses--it helps moms feel good, and therefore allows her to relax and open on her own??
Thanks for any leads and/or insights.
Cindy Unger (Doula & HypnoBirthing instructor)