How to ease labor naturally, all methods

How to ease labor naturally, all methods
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How to facilitate natural labor

Around the XNUMXth week the pregnancy is coming to an end and she is expecting with increasing anxiety the moment when the contractions will begin. But often, especially in the first pregnancy, the onset of labor can be delayed and the wait becomes unnerving. It will be up to the doctor alone to decide whether to start inducing labor and how. In the meantime, we may find out how to ease labor naturally.

In this article

How to start labor

There are some methods for initiate contractions: the catheter in Foley, a balloon that opens inside the vagina and promotes the production of prostaglandin; an intravenous injection of pitocina, a synthetic version of oxytocin, or a gel based on prostaglandin; rupture of the membranes with a hooked plastic instrument that breaks the amniotic sac. In all these cases, it is a question of medical procedures rather invasive, but there are also more natural and gentle ways to try to induce the onset of labor.

How to induce labor naturally

They are handed down from generation to generation natural methods that can (or seems to be able) to stimulate the arrival of contractions. For example having a sexual intercourse: the sperm contains natural prostaglandins which soften the uterine cervix and the oxytocin produced in the female organism favors the onset of labor; the same way the stimulation of the nipples, thanks to which oxytocin is produced.

Some remedies, on the other hand, remain confined to popular wisdom and grandmothers' tales:castor oil, which has laxative properties and a really unpleasant taste; some food items such as spices, spicy foods and pineapple. Let's see in more detail the main natural methods to induce contractions.

How to stimulate the nipples to induce labor

We often hear it said that a stimulation of the nipples could promote the onset of labor.

Is it true or is it just a popular rumor?

In fact it is very true that stimulating the nipples promotes the release of oxytocin by the neurohypophysis. As we all know, oxytocin is a key hormone for childbirth, but also for the phases following birth, for strengthening the mother-child bond and for milk production (it is no coincidence that it is called the love hormone) . How does oxytocin work? Its main role in childbirth is that of stimulate contractions of the muscular walls of the uterus and therefore to initiate the actual labor. And in fact, as previously mentioned, a synthetic version of oxytocin is injected into the mother intravenously to induce childbirth. But how can the nipples be stimulated to encourage contractions?

You have to massage the nipples with the fingertips for a few seconds every two or three minutes and repeat this operation for about an hour. You can use a clean and wet towel with warm water or natural oil, or, alternatively, you can also do a stimulation with the breast pump.

Of course, this procedure can be implemented only and exclusively if you are reached the deadline and the expected date of delivery: otherwise you run the risk of starting labor too soon.

Exercises to induce labor

Regardless of the type of exercise, it is good to know that any type of physical activity it is good for health, improves good mood and, of course, can promote the onset of labor. Here are some useful exercises to stimulate contractions:

  • walk: a nice walk every day helps not only to feel physically good, to breathe fresh air and oxygen, but it will also help the child to push, by force of gravity, on the cervix and facilitate its movements. It is no coincidence that the pregnant woman is invited to walk back and forth even in the early stages of labor, when contractions have already begun;
  • swim breaststroke: swimming helps you feel lighter and has undoubted benefits on the health and well-being of the back, neck and legs. Breaststroke trains the pelvic floor and can promote contractions

How to make contractions come naturally

However, there are some natural methods, herbal or homeopathic, which could prove to be effective in starting labor. Let's see some of them:

  • Bach flowers: Impatiens, Mimulus or Red Chestnut are recommended;
  • Aperemus granules: Aperemus is a homeopathic compound that stimulates the dilation of the cervix favoring the onset of labor;
  • Warm compresses: according to our grandmothers, a hot bath or a pack with hot water not only relaxes the muscles of the uterus and gives a feeling of overall relaxation, but can also stimulate the production of oxytocin;
  • Tincture of Actea Racemosa: manages to smooth out the uterine cervix and lowers the level of anxiety.
  • Herbal Teas: ginger, cloves, verbena and cinnamon are the ingredients to prepare a natural herbal tea;
  • Acupressure: According to supporters of this ancient practice, exerting pressure on certain points of the body can promote the production of oxytocin and start labor. Which points need to be stimulated? A point is located between the thumb and forefinger of the hand; another is located on the inside of the ankle, behind the bony protrusion; the lower back at the level of the sacrum and the muscles between the neck and shoulders;
  • AnanasThis fruit contains a substance called bromelain, which works by softening the cervix and helping it to ripen.

Finally we remember that the sex it can certainly bring about contractions. This for several reasons:

  • contractions of the uterus produced during the body can be a trigger;
  • seminal fluid contains natural prostaglandins which soften the cervix
Read also: The four stages of labor

How to give birth earlier

A full-term pregnancy is considered terminated at 42 weeks. Before that moment, the gynecologist will not perform any induction, unless there are serious reasons that could jeopardize the health of the mother or child (and in this case he will also provide for a caesarean delivery without too many second thoughts!). What do the experts say in terms of birth induction and timing? The World Health Organization firmly reiterates that induction to childbirth must not take place for mere convenience, but only in situations where specific medical conditions exist and a labor induction rate of more than 10% must not be achieved.


How to get contractions: all methods

How to stimulate contractions? Here are some methods, real and otherwise

Stimulate labor at 38 weeks

The WHO, as mentioned, sets limits for induction to labor and in any case declares that this procedure must not be implemented before the 41st week.

In any case, some of the natural methods listed above can be used since 38th week to prepare for childbirth. For example, having regular sexual intercourse, going for a walk or a swim every day, eating foods such as pineapple or spicy foods that can promote the start of labor, etc. are safe and not at all risky methods.

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