There are many natural ways to induce yourself effectively to have labor contractions that will lead to delivery on the estimated due date. Here are the three most popular labor induction methods to try when you’re ready for labor.
It is just starting to be known in the Western world, yet acupressure has been in use in the ancient cultures for ages. It is actually a non-invasive form of acupuncture; it uses the fingers to apply gentle pressure or circular massage at certain points of the body to induce labor. Acupressure is the safest way to increase contractions during labor naturally. It has absolutely no side effects, can even reduce the pain during labor, and can relieve tension as well. There are acupressure techniques you must ask your husband to learn so that he can apply them properly to the acupressure points.
Acupressure points and techniques:
#1: Hoku Point (also called L14) – this is the point found halfway between the index finger and the thumb. Bring these two fingers together and the Hoku point is the muscle that goes up on your hand.
Technique: Adjoining Valley – apply a firm press to the Hoku point, pinch continually to stimulate the large intestines that encircle part of your uterus. This will induce contraction and lessen the pain during delivery.
#2: Spleen 6 Point (also called SP-6, Three Yin Intersection) – to locate this point, measure 4 fingers above the ankle bone on the inside of your leg. This point is that part on the backside of the shin bone that feels a bit tender.
Technique: Three Yin Crossing – rub this area for about one minute to help induce labor, lessen anxious feelings and calm you.
Technique: Big and High – continuously massage the area between your ankle bone and the Achilles tendon, which is the part just above your heel to coax the baby to descend to your pelvis.
#3: Bladder 32 – trace an imaginary line between your buttocks to the end of your spine bone. The small depression that you come across is the bladder 32 point.
Technique: use the thumb and knuckles to apply pressure on the depression and massage until the contractions start coming. Do not use before week 38 or until labor has started.
2. Nipple Stimulation
Nipple stimulation is another holistic way to induce labor by yourself. This is the process of massaging, rubbing or rolling the nipples gently. The action causes your body to release the oxytoxin hormone, which can cause contraction of the uterus. They start out as mild cramping and progress to strong contractions as the stimulation continues.
Nipple stimulation is achieved by the gentle rubbing, rolling, or sucking of the nipples; it may be combined with other natural methods to induce labor. Since this technique can be overdone and can cause too strong contractions, there are certain rules to follow:
- Massage only one nipple at a time.
- Do the massaging or rubbing for only 5 minutes and take a 15 minute break see what happens.
- When you feel a contraction, stop the stimulation.
- Do not use nipple stimulation if your contractions are 3 minutes apart.
- Nipple stimulation can only be done if the cervix is already effaced.
3. Castor Oil
Taking castor oil when your pregnancy is full term is a natural labor inducer. As a homeopathic remedy, the use of castor oil could stimulate contractions and induce labor, but this is advisable only if you have no abnormal pregnancy symptoms and the doctor has not diagnosed you as a high-risk case.
Between 38 to 42 weeks, you may use the castor oil technique to begin labor induction. Take 2 to 4 tablespoons of the substance with some orange juice or milk to minimize the unpleasant taste and strong odor. Otherwise, you may feel nauseated and end up vomiting the stuff. The contractions should start within 24 hours from taking castor oil. This method has been found to be effective in about 58% of the women who tried it.
Castor oil is commonly used as a laxative to help in constipation. The action of causing the intestines to contract and cramp expands to the uterine walls. When the uterus starts to contract, labor is naturally induced and delivery follows.
There are some risks to using castor oil as a labor inducer although these have not been studied thoroughly. Fetal distress, uterine wall rupture, and the baby’s passing of meconium into the amniotic fluid are some of them.
These methods are accepted holistic and natural ways of how to induce labor yourself. They are known to be beneficial and effective, and you can enlist the help of some midwives in carrying them out. If you are experiencing other symptoms and have doubts over the safety of using them, it is best to consult with doctors, who are specialists in the field of obstetrics and gynecology. They can combine natural and medical labor techniques to find the best one that will work for you.