8 Tips on How to Avoid Labor Induction:
1. Start acupuncture at 35 weeks.
To avoid a labor induction and for all the “stars to align” and labor to start on its own and go smoothly, your hormones need to be balanced and your baby needs to be in the optimal position. Beginning acupuncture at week 35 of your pregnancy can be very helpful in helping your baby to get into the right position before labor begins. It can help you relax and tune into your sympathetic nervous system, so you’ll be able to turn inward and relax during contractions in labor and birth. Your cervix needs to ripen before labor can begin and acupuncture can help your body produce the prostaglandins that help your cervix loosen up and get stretchy, so as labor progresses your cervix will open, open, open!
2. Eat 6 dates a day in the last 4 weeks of your pregnancy.
Avoiding a labor induction can be as simple as eating 6 dates a day! Though researchers don’t have conclusive evidence as to why this is so, the women who ate dates daily in the last month of pregnancy had less need for both induction of labor, and any need to speed up labor with artificial hormones. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21280989
3. Have sex (semen has prostaglandins that help ripen the cervix).
Both orgasm and semen on the cervix stimulate the uterus to contract. The prostaglandins in the semen also have an affect of ripening the cervix, or softening it to help it shorten and open (efface and dilate). This makes it easier for labor to begin and progress on its own without help from artificial hormones. Both the semen and an orgasm can help you avoid a labor induction. So have a bit of fun.
4. Take a Uterine Tonic
Taking a uterine tonic is known to strengthen the uterus and help prepare it for an effective labor. This can help you avoid an unnecessary labor induction. In our modern culture, women sit a lot more and exercise a lot less. So 5W and the others, below, are known as a uterine tonic. Nature’s Sunshine 5-w Herbal Combination Supplement Supports Glandular and Reproductive System 100 Capsules Each (Pack of 2) It helps to encourage the uterus to contract and prep the cervix to open. To avoid the use of needing a uterine tonic, walking 2 hours a day and practicing yoga can help. But when I was pregnant the first time around, the herbalist, Keith Smith, told me if I take the herbal combination 5W in the last 5 weeks of my pregnancy, my labor would be 10 hours or less. It was 8 hours! So I am a believer as long as you consult a certified herbalist or midwife first. You can order it here:
Consulting a certified herbalist may be very helpful if using a uterine tonic: American Herbalist Guild
5. Take Ultimate Vaginal Flora 50 billion probiotic.
It will prevent yeast infections and boost your immunity. My students have also reported that it has cured their heartburn, nausea, and constipation. Having healthy flora in the vagina can also help prevent the bag of waters from rupturing before labor begins, helping to avoid a labor induction.
6. Keep your bag of waters intact.
Eat lots of foods with Vitamin C , eat 80-100 grams of protein daily, eat dates, take the probiotic to keep your bag of waters intact. All that good vitamin C can help you fight off infection too.
7. Walk (or swim) daily.
According to spinningbabies.com, both exercises tone the uterus, help position the baby correctly, and physically prepare you for the athletic event of labor.
8. Practice yoga 3 times a week.
Research shows that practicing yoga in the last 10-12 weeks of your pregnancy both shortens labor and reduces labor pain. You can find my Prenatal Yoga classes at Yoga Download.
Remember that there is no wrong way to birth your baby. But if your goal is to have a normal, natural healthy, an safe birth the above list of things to do can give you confidence that you did all you could to create the best birth possible for your own baby.