For nine months, you eagerly wait for this precious moment. And if your due date is approaching, you become more impatient, though all you can do is to be at ease and patient. Sometimes, before reaching to the hospital, the pregnant women take several home remedies in order to induce labor themselves. If the induction date is near, the ever-impatient would-be moms feel like giving their babies a gentle nudge to come out. There are several methods to induce labor during the final days of pregnancy.
Here are some of the home remedies for would-be mummies, to naturally induce labor while they wait for that awesome moment.
This may sound a bit scary, but trust me it is effective in inducing labor. Piercing needles into your body may sound difficult, but is actually not. When the needles are fine, it hardly pains. Though, it is also true that labor induction through acupuncture is not always successful, but it may work sometime. In order to induce labor through acupuncture, you should have reached to your due date of delivery or after, unless it is recommended by your doctor. Acupuncture is safe for the mother and the baby, and even helps in speeding up the natural processes of your body. If you don’t like getting pinned to soft needles, you can go for the method of acupressure.
2. Nipple Stimulation
This is one of the best ways to induce labor if you are undergoing a smooth and easygoing pregnancy, without any complications. Nipple stimulation is simpler and has high chances of inducing labor as it releases oxytocin, a hormone which causes contraction in the uterus. Nipple stimulation may work well, if you are more than 40 weeks of pregnant. You have to do it thrice a day, for an hour. But, make sure you are gentle while doing nipple stimulation. Also, avoid this method in high-risk pregnancies, like gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia and high blood pressure.
There are possibilities of a natural labor induction through walking. As being in an upright position encourages your baby to move down towards your cervix. And while walking, the rhythmic force of your baby’s skull on your cervix stimulates the release of the hormone – oxytocin, which will eventually cause your uterus to contract. Be careful of you don’t walk too much or exhaust yourself as you will need this energy later. Walking may also help your baby to attain a much better position, if your baby’s head has not moved down to the pelvis. Besides walking, just moving around might also help to induce your labor while you are in an active labor’s period.
Pineapple may also help in inducing your labor as it contains an enzyme called ‘Bromelain’ which softens and ripens the cervix. If you have completed 40 weeks of pregnancy, then you can help yourself by eating fresh pineapples. But, you need to be careful because excess intake of it may cause diarrhea, and you would surely not like to have an upset stomach while being in active labor. Avoid pineapple in the form of juice as juicing destroys Bromelain content in it.
5. Raspberry Leaf Tea
Raspberry Leaf tea may not help to induce labor, but it is actually beneficial in many ways once the active labor period has started. You may take it in the form of tea or tablets, once a day in the beginning, and then increasing to at least 3 cups a day. It is advisable to start taking raspberry leaf tea once you have reached 32 weeks of pregnancy, but not before that, as it strongly helps in stimulating the muscles of the uterus. Raspberry leaf acts as a natural toner, as well as a good iron tonic for the womb, while helping the anemic would-be moms.
6. Spice up Your Food
Most women love spicy food, and especially during pregnancy as their taste buds start longing for delicious and spicy foods. So, curried food is also believed to induce labor, though it is also not totally proven. Garlic is the most important ingredient that helps in inducing labor. It plays a major role in stimulating your bowels and eventually causes loose stools. This will stimulate your uterus and result into contractions while an empty bowel provides more space to the baby to move downwards. It would make it easier for your baby to arouse labor when he/she is ready.
7. Make Love
It is partly believed that making love may also trigger the contractions in the uterus. Though there is no evidence to this, but many moms claim that they were induced to labor after making love with their partners. But, there are some basic reasons as to why it is assumed that love-making stimulates labor. The released semen while intercourse softens (ripening) the cervix (neck of your uterus) in order to dilate as soon as the labor starts. Semen contains prostaglandins, a chemical to relax the tissues, thereby softening the cervix. Having sex also releases oxytocin, it is a hormone that starts up the contraction in the uterus walls. It is also believed that the uterus gets stimulated even by having an orgasm as it directly triggers the muscles’ contractions. Be careful; do not have sex if your waters have already broken down, as making-love after your waters break down may result in high risk of infection.
8. Castor Oil
Castor oil is highly laxative and can induce labor in some cases. Only after counseling from your doctor, you can try a small quantity (114 ml) of castor oil mixed with orange juice. The oiliness of castor oil stimulates the stomach and causes loose stools, which automatically triggers in the uterus contractions. Remember, even a small quantity will make you feel nauseous. You cannot rely completely on this method to induce labor as there have been times when using castor oil has been absolutely useless. Apart from causing an upset tummy, castor oil will not harm the mother or the baby in any way.
9. Try Homeopathic Remedies
Homeopathy works well in order to induce labor. As many women have tried and said it to be effective in inducing their labor. You can try homeopathic remedies like Pulsatilla and Caulophyllum, which helps in triggering the labor. These homeopathic remedies are the diluted versions of very strong substances. Homeopathy is not harmful to the baby or mother. Have a word with your doctor or midwife before using any of these homeopathic remedy. If you want to use a homeopathic remedy for inducing labor, consult a registered homeopath.
10. Have a Relaxing Bath
Relax in a warm water bath, and you may be induced to labor. As your emotional state will also play a great role in triggering the contractions in your uterus. Be careful, the water is not too hot as it will stress out your baby because he is inside you where the temperature is already high. You can even add 1-2 drops of Lavender Essential oil, which will naturally relax your body, thereby boosting your mood too.