Is there really a method that induces labor naturally?
As the due date approaches, many couples are anxious to see their baby. Although many possible techniques are heard to trigger labor, in most cases they are hearsay and their reliability has not been proven, and they could even be potentially harmful. Before using any of these methods it is important to consult with a doctor, and never use them before 38 weeks of gestation.
Among the methods stand out:
- Acupuncture. This is a method that has been used for centuries in some parts of Asia to trigger labor. Although it is a method that is still being investigated, a small study from the University of Northern California found that 70% of women who received acupuncture after the 39th week of pregnancy went into labor on their own, versus 50% of those who received standard care. Furthermore, it also appears that it reduced the probability of cesarean delivery.
- Sexual relations Sperm contains prostaglandins, natural substances that act in a similar way to drugs used to induce labor in hospitals. Prostalglandins help the cervix to ripen. In addition, oxytocin is released during orgasm, which can also trigger contractions.
- Nipple stimulation. Massaging the nipples for a few hours a day can cause oxytocin to be released, leading to uterine contractions.
- MassagesMassage increases the production of oxytocin, and therefore can cause contractions.
- Walk. When walking, the force of gravity and the movement of the hips help the baby to fit in the birth canal. The pressure that the baby exerts on the pelvis favors the start of labor.
- Spicy foods Some people believe that spicy food irritates the intestines and that this can cause the uterus to contract.
- Eat pineapple. Pineapple contains the enzyme bromelain, which is believed to help soften the cervix and cause labor.
- Castor oil. Its effect seems to be based on the stimulation of the intestines on which the uterus is supported. Castor oil produces spasms in the intestines, which irritate the uterus and eventually cause contractions. It can cause severe diarrhea that causes dehydration, therefore it is important to consult with your doctor before taking it.
- Cohosh This plant contains compounds that can act like estrogens in the body. Given the lack of studies on the safety of this plant during pregnancy, its use is not recommended.
- Evening primrose oil. They seem to act by favoring the softening and dilation of the cervix, and therefore favoring the beginning of labor.
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