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Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

I've heard so many different tips for inducing labor on my own. Does anything actually work?

Re: I've heard so many different tips for inducing labor on my own. Does anything actually work?

The Bump Expert

Sorry, but... no. Not really. At least, nothing that's been proven both safe and effective. Some of the methods you may have heard about:

Sex
Orgasms may bring on contractions, and there's also prostaglandin (which induces contractions) in semen. Studies on the subject differ -- some have found that sex at term can lessen the need for induction, while others have shown that sex has no effect at all. That being said... if you're still up for it, go right ahead, trouper! You've got our admiration.

Castor oil
The reasoning behind this one: Castor oil is a strong laxative, and bowel stimulation may cause contractions. Still interested? Well, there's no proof it induces labor... but strong experiential evidence shows that it doesn't feel to great on the stomach!

Nipple stimulation
Labor-inducing oxytocin is released when your nipples are stimulated, but this is pretty risky to try at home. It's actually possible to overstimulate your uterus, which means your contractions and baby's well-being need to be monitored.

Herbal remedies
The general rule for whatever herbal remedy you're offered: There's no evidence that it works. And, like nipple stimulation, some herbs carry this risk of overstimulating your uterus. Some herbs may also hold additional dangers for baby's health.

Paula Kashtan

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Trying anything is better than using Pitocin which can also led to strong contractions which can hurt the baby and the mom. And although Pitocin may be regulated, it's still very easy to give too much and then have to back down when it is often too late. Also, sperm has something in it which can help induce labor. I can't remember the exact thing, but there is a medication which doctors use that has this same chemical in it. And no, nothing has any science behind it, but when the medical world uses medicines that have the same chemicals to induce labor, I think that says something.

moose10 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

most are mainly rumors or extremely unsafe to do on your own. I say let your little one decide when to come out. i know its hard to wait, but learning patients is a big key role in parenthood and its the healthiest and safest way to bring him or her into our world.

murchury15 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Evening primrose oil is a natural cervix softener, and can be taken orally or vaginally starting around 38 weeks. There is also an acupressure point on the top of your shoulder, in between where the end of your clavicle is and the point where your shoulder starts to curve upwards to your neck. Squeeze the top with a wide pinching grip, hard enough to border on deep-tissue massage sore/uncomfortable. Squeeze and release after a few seconds. My mom was applying pressure to these points minutes before my water broke. Granted, I was sitting on my birthing ball on my EDD, the day that my membranes were stripped (ask your midwife about this!), and after a few hours of light contractions. But a massage feels good anyway! And I think that all of the above helped me with a smooth natural delivery.

Lithigin |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

At my last check-up before my due date my Doctor "swept my glands". pretty darn painful. However was definately some kind of "natural induction". My water broke within 24 hours!!!

dayonjes18 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

I had my membranes stripped, had lots of sex, used primrose oil, two sessions of cervical softening and then I had TENS Acupuncture (electrodes set up to the needles in my four gates) when I wanted to get things started and after that session I had my son less than 12 hours later - my labor started around midnight and I had my son at 6:50 am - it was quick, by the time I got to the hospital a little after 5 am I was 9 cm dilated, no drugs needed and was not that painful! I highly encourage those who are serious about labor induction do what works best for you, but Acupuncture is what helped me, I had my son 8 days early - he didn't have to have his birthday on Christmas!

SweetYean |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Eating fresh pineapple did it for me. After eating a few slices, I started feeling crampy, and a few hours later, my water broke

palita |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Your baby will not come unless your body is physically ready to deliver a baby, which is usually after week 38/39, so nothing can really bring on early labor. Once your body is at that point, exercise can sometime get labor to progress faster and it can make for an easier delivery if you exercise through out your pregnancy. Prostaglandins in semen, which are released by the man during orgasm can cause contractions to help jump start labor. Nipple stimulation releases hormones that can help labor slowly progress for some women.

amrosenbaum@viterbo.edu |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

My Registered Massage Therapist swears by the pressure points around your ankles and wrists. We tried it in August for our darling baby (I was 40.5 wks at that point), and sure enough, not even 3 hours later, I started having contractions. Check out the pressure points online, so if you do have a massage (of which I highly reccommend during pregnancy), they know not to touch them. (Two other gals in my Husband's office went for pedicures on a thursday, and one started labour on the sunday morning, and the other 10 days later....)

jp03 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Acupressure can induce labor as well as relieve pain during childbirth. Acupuncture points have multiple functions so if your partner or doula/midwife learns points that are useful for pain relief, he/she can use the same points to induce labor. Here is an article that talks about labor and acupressure http://www.secondspringhealth.com/acupressure-to-relieve-pain-during-labor

viktoriyasd |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Lots of sex worked with my first baby! The trick is to do just about nothing else for a couple of days. I think it took 12 times in 3 days, but it worked! Also, my doc had given me the go-ahead to try that method because she was ready.

amberb1283 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

my due date was september 13, 2011. i have done nipple stimulation, sex, walking so my doctors are talkin about induction or c-section now

jessicajo87 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

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watson012 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

The only natural labor induction method is to allow your baby to come when it is good and ready! Just remember there is no such thing as a permanently pregnant woman!

jennjenn5158 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

Can someone do something about all the spam posts on this page? As for the actual topic at hand, any method of induction should be discussed with your doctor, midwife, and/or doula. It is important to realize that few natural induction methods have been thoroughly studied. Most evidence for and against these methods is purely anecdotal. Am I saying I think none of the methods are valid? Absolutely not, I am saying that you should talk to your healthcare professional and find out how they feel about these methods and what experiences they have had before rushing into anything. I personally think that all of these methods probably do work, but not necessarily for everyone or in every situation.

jasandseth |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

I am 40 + 3 weeks. I've been 3cm dilated and 70% effaced for 2 weeks. I have tried spicey foods, lots of sex, evening primrose oil, acupressure, massages, pineapple, and castor oil, Nothing has worked.

sallyrose80 |

Q&A: What are some natural labor induction methods?

I went for my 39 week apt. I was 0cm dilated and 10-15% effaced :/ My doctor told me to start taking Primrose oil. I take one in the AM orally and one in the PM vaginally. After TWO days of taking it I woke up and lost my mucus plug!

gijaneac |