How To Naturally Induce Labor

by Mark Clair, Childbirth Expert on March 29, 2011

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There are many ways to induce labor in pregnancy, both naturally & medically. Medical labor induction involves taking in drugs and other medication that could be harmful to both the mother and the baby. With more and more women becoming aware of the importance of healthy living, methods to naturally induce labor have come out of the woods and gained mainstream popularity.

Inducing labor naturally is a safe way to stimulate the uterus to contract. It does not introduce chemicals or drugs into the body during pregnancy but instead uses natural methods to induce labor contractions and achieve delivery of a healthy baby.

There are many natural ways to induce labor in pregnancy. But these methods should not be used when the baby isn’t fully developed. Labor induction should be applied when the gestation age has reached the 42-week mark to avoid any unnecessary risk to both mother and child. At the right time, women who are pregnant should try to find the best way that will induce labor naturally if they want to be safe. However, these methods will only work when you’re ready for labor and your due date has arrived.

When you are pregnant, your health and nutrition should be attended with care if you plan to use natural ways to induce labor. A well-balanced diet rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals will keep your body in a good and comfortable condition when the day comes. Avoid high blood pressure and leg cramps associated with pregnancy by eating cereal and potassium-rich meals. Potassium deficiency will weaken your muscles and take away the strength that is necessary for childbirth and labor contractions that come with it.

Women who are pregnant should take vitamins and supplements to ensure that the required daily dose is met. Besides, you can consult with your health care provider regarding the supplements that you should be adding to your diet. Often, Nature’s Sunshine products, food supplements, are of high quality and made with strict adherence to government regulations.

Acupressure to induce labor is safe. It also reduces the pain of labor contractions and has no side effects. The acupressure points that help induce labor are the following:

  • Hoku point (the webbing that is located between the thumb and the index finger)
  • Spleen 6 point (the area that is about 4 fingers above the ankle bone and to the inside of the shin bone)
  • Bladder 32 (the depression located above the buttock line and the end of the spine)

By applying gentle pressure with fingers and making small circular motions, natural labor induction is produced to generate contractions of the uterus. Usually, the midwife or your partner can do the acupressure on you.

There are special techniques in acupressure that induce labor naturally:

  • Adjoining Valley – the Hoku point connects to the large intestine that encircles part of the uterus. Apply pressure to the space between the thumb and forefinger to induce labor.
  • Big and High – press the Spleen 6 point to help the baby to descend to your pelvis and open the cervix.
  • Three Yin Crossing – press the ankle on the inside of the leg to make contractions stronger.
  • Shoulder Well – measure a 4-finger width from the highest point on the shoulder muscle, moving in towards the neck. This is a very tender area and applying pressure here will manage the pain during labor.

Labor naturally with exercise. Walk at your own pace when you reach the third trimester of pregnancy. Walking and being in an upright position helps to pull the baby down to the pelvis by gravity and encourages the cervix to open. During exercising, you should drink plenty of fluids to keep yourself hydrated. Don’t overdo the exercise and rest if your body is stressed.

Induce labor naturally with castor oil. Castor oil causes spasms of the bowels and brings about diarrhea. It also stimulates the uterus and induces labor contractions, thereby helping in the delivery of the baby. Taking 2 tablespoons of castor oil with a glass of orange juice or milk lessens the unpleasant taste and odor. You should feel contractions within 24 hours after drinking castor oil. The risk of taking castor oil is the possibility of your baby passing meconium into the amniotic sac, although there has been no study proving such direct cause of castor oil.

Naturally induce labor by nipple stimulation. You can stimulate labor by gently rubbing and rolling your nipples between your fingers. Do this for 5 minutes and rest for 15 minutes, and work on one nipple at a time only. Nipple stimulation is a potent and strong method of inducing labor as contractions may come in powerful force; therefore, you should use this technique with caution. This method works by releasing oxytocin, which is a hormone that induces contraction of the uterus. Do not perform nipple stimulation if the contractions are coming 3 minutes apart.

Healthy eating is only one aspect of healthy living. The entire spectrum of health care also includes mental health. Too much anxiety is not good for women’s health. Practice relaxation techniques, meditation, and visualization to remain calm. Being physically, emotionally, and mentally healthy will make natural labor induction easier.

Sex is also a great natural way to induce labor. The orgasm the woman experiences will release oxytocin to stimulate the uterus. Prostaglandin from the male semen also helps to soften the cervix and prepare it for opening and effacing.

There are many ways to naturally induce labor during full term pregnancy. Guide to childbirth manuals are available to give you detailed information on how to induce labor using natural methods.

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