I'm 40 weeks pregnant today. While I know that the baby will come when she's ready, I was wondering what your thoughts are on using natural methods to induce (acupressure points, castor oil, etc). I'm on the fence because I believe that I should trust my body and to try to induce before spontaneously going into labor is not very trusting of my body. On the other hand, I'm READY to see my baby girl and experience my labor.
Although, a few more days/weeks shouldn't be that hard after waiting a full 40, right?

Opinions?

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My son was due April 24 and I didn't have him until May 2. I tried acupuncture and acupressure. I was SO ready to deliver! At my midwife appointment on May 1, she stripped my membranes and while she was in there, showed me what a contraction felt like. I said, "Oh, I've been having those today!". I did some shopping with my mom and continued having contraction throughout the day until they stopped at 10pm. I also took a natural laxative (midwife-approved) to get labor going. Labor started at 1am and I was holding my son 9 hours later!
I don't see anything wrong with natural induction methods. Of course, I believe babies come when they're ready and that's an important thing to wait for. My son probably would have been born on May 2nd without the methods I tried! It's probably more to make us feel a little better, you know?
Good luck! I'm due again the end of this coming April and four months feels like a long way off!
I found bumpy roads to be extremely helpful :-). So was going for a walk. But above all, I would make sure you are well rested and eating really well. It's well worth it to kick back with a glass of red wine (guinness is supposed to start labor too), and a hearty dinner only to have labor start in the wee hours of the morning after a good nights sleep.
Don't rush it, just take really good care of yourself in these last few days. Enjoy your babies feet kicking your fingers, all too soon you'll find you miss the feeling. God bless.
I would LOVE a glass of red wine, but I think the heartburn would probably knock me over. I haven't been able to manage even one sip for most of my pregnancy. :(
I am pretty sure that wine/beer is recommended to relax the uterus and stop contractions. That's why in the BOBB Kara recommended that Abby have a glass and get in the tub--both can stall early labor--because she was early and Kara was trying to prevent/stop labor. Ladies--if I am wrong please correct me :)
From what my midwife has told me, a glass of any kind of alcohol can help stop the uterus from contracting (there's a pretty hilarious story about that in Spiritual Midwifery). I was also told that sometimes just being able to relax yourself and not be uptight and nervous/excited about upcoming labor can in fact help your labor get started. Both of my labors started after a big cozy dinner with family and wine :-).
So it's not so much that the wine starts your labor, it just helps you relax enough to let labor start on it's own.
That makes sense since stress and fear can both slow/stop labor. Thanks! :)
I know they used to use alcohol iv to stop labor. They haven't done that for years, but there probably is something to it.
My understanding about natural induction methods is that if your body is ready they will work. If your body is not ready then they won't work. If you think about it, even medical inductions don't really work if your body isn't ready. It's called a failed induction, and then you're facing emergency surgery.

Of any induction methods, I would prefer to do it naturally, but I don't feel it's really necessary. I understand those feelings at the end of pregnancy when you are just SO ready to have a baby, and sometimes doing something, anything, to try to get things going just helps put your mind at ease a little bit. However, if it doesn't work you might find yourself even more frustrated. I went through that with my latest pregnancy. He was born 5 days past the due date, and I think it was simply because of his position (he was breech). We tried some natural things like evening primrose oil, sex, etc. and when it came right down to it he wasn't coming out until he was ready.
There has been some research that shows that nipple stimulation might be a good way to induce naturally. This is because it produces oxytocin(the natural hormone that pitocin is made after). I'm trying to remember the research I read on it. It seemed like you could use a pump 30m a day. I don't remember the specifics though. I would try it and see if it starts any contractions. The thing I like about this method is that if your contractions are getting too close together(more that 2m apart) you can stop. Things like caster oil, you can't stop it...your body just reacts to it.
I forgot to mention that one. For me nipple stimulation always seemed to help make existing contractions stronger, but I don't think it ever actually got labor started. It has broken my water more than once ;)
I am only really for the invasive ones(castor oil, cohosha and so on) if a medical induction is being force, and even then it is case by case. Things like having sex, brisk walks, nipple, stim and acupuncture seem to only work when the body is ready. At this point I personally would only go out walking if you had planned to already and would only have sex if you are in the mood for it(if you do have sex ejaculate has prostaglandins in it which helps prep the cervix). Otherwise I would spend my time and energy doing labor/birth prep. Like drinking red raspberry leaf tea for uterine toning, taking/inserting evening prim rose oil for cervical ripening, doing hands and knees for positioning, and perineal massage for stretching.
Yeah, I was 2 1/2 weeks overdue with my first son, and the midwives were getting nervous, because of the 3 weeks over rule in Oregon- then I would have to go to a hospital. I just knew they were wrong on the ultrasounds though, and that he needed more time to grow his lungs. I did light acupuncture, only enough to stimulate him IF HE WAS READY. I think that is so key. And he came 4 hours later. :) His lungs were perfect! He was supposed to come way later. My friend tried castor oil, jumping off beds, etc, and nothing works until that baby wants to come. Plus, she had terrible pains from the castor oil, so I wouldn't recommend that. Good luck! Just take it easy, go on daily walks, and enjoy the last few weeks.

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