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Easy Ways to Go Into Labor

By Hannah Rice Myers ; Updated July 18, 2017

Going past your due date is quite common, and according to the website, 7 out of 10 babies are content to wait an extra week or two before making their appearance. You can coax him out using easy techniques, but as Marjorie Greenfield, M.D. suggests, it is safer to wait until you are at least 40 weeks pregnant to ensure his health outside of the womb.

Sexual Intercourse

For many pregnant women who are in their final stages, sex is the last thing they think about according to Dr. Greenfield. This may be due to excessive vaginal pressure, or simply feeling awkward because of her belly. It is, however, one of the options when wanting to trigger labor. As Greenfield states, the semen has the ability to stimulate contractions. adds that sex releases oxytocin, a hormone that causes the uterus to contract. Oxytocin is a natural form of pitocin, a drug doctors use when inducing labor in the hospital.

Take a Walk

Walking is an option for women who may be having contractions but who are not in full-blown labor. Not only does it help bring the baby in the position for delivery, it also helps move the baby into the pelvis from the gravity of the upright position.

Nipple Stimulation

Another means of releasing oxytocin, some women find it helpful to massage their nipples to release this hormone and induce their labor. Again, this may cause contractions which can eventually turn into labor.

As Greenfield points out however, many doctors do not promote this method of natural induction because it can lead to longer, stronger contractions. These, in turn, can result in a slow down of the baby's heart rate. Before using this method, talk to your doctor, as he may only allow it if he can monitor the baby closely.

Membrane Stripping

This is often done during a prenatal exam. Similar to a pelvic exam, according to Greenfield, your doctor will place a gloved hand inside your cervix and sweep away the amniotic membranes. This may release prostaglandins, hormone-like substances which can help prepare your body for labor.

This process can be painful and cause slight cramping, although it only takes a few seconds. Some medical experts believe it begins the labor process, as Greenfield explains. While it does not cause your water to break, it also does not cause any complications. In addition, patients having this procedure done are less likely to go past their due date.

Blue and Black Cohosh

An herbal treatment, blue and black cohosh are often used for labor induction. Greenfield states that they are more effective for women experiencing weak or irregular contractions. The blue cohosh strengthens contractions, while black cohosh regulates them. They are more effective when taken together.

Greenfield suggests discussing the safety of these herbs with your doctor before taking them, as no evidence currently exists concerning this matter.

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