Pregnancy is a beautiful event in a woman's life that some women are fortunate enough to experience. The ability to grow a tiny human being is one of the greatest feelings imaginable. Every sonogram, the sound of a little thumping heartbeat, and feelings of their perfect baby moving around is the highlight of every mother's pregnancy. However, after a long while, moms-to-be are simply ready for that little monster to come out. Pregnant can be uncomfortable, embarrassing and all around annoying at times. Between the all day nausea, itchy bellies, swelling, gas, and backed-up plumbing, women are excited when the end is in sight.
Now the common time for a pregnancy is around 40 weeks, but it is not uncommon, nor bad if women go beyond that. In fact, 80 percent of first-time mothers can go 1 to 2 weeks past their term. To be honest, pregnancy is not overdue until the 42nd week. A lot of women expect to go into labor on their due date, and may even try looking for alternative methods to get the flow started. Women become tired of all the pressure down below, the sleepless nights and severe heartburn, and simply want to give birth to their anxiously-awaited bundle of joy.
In order to do so, women will research and try some safe home remedies that can jump-start labor, earlier than what the body wants. The recommended time to safely try and induce labor is around 39-40 weeks. For those that are considering beginning the miracle of life before 39 weeks, it can be dangerous and, most likely, won't work. It's important to do an extensive amount of research and discussing natural remedies with a practicing OB/GYN.
Here are 15 things moms-to-be can do to jump-start their labor, safely and naturally.
16 Bouncing On A Pregnancy Ball For The Right Position
Inducing labor means stimulating the body into giving birth. To do so, the baby must move into the proper birthing position.
One common item pregnant women like to use to do jumpstart the birth of their child is an exercise ball.
A few methods to try with this item include; simply just sitting, which helps your baby line up with gravity or bouncing, which can help move your baby’s head down into the birth canal. Rocking and pelvic tilts, which can help move him or her into the correct position, or you can just try rocking back and forth on hands and knees, which may help move him or her and position, but it can also help encourage faster dilation and effacement. There are also wall squats which you can try, which help to open up your pelvis, create more room for your baby to move through your pelvis and position the baby to travel down into the right spot to start labor. This method is the best use when the baby is already starting to travel downwards though, it will speed up his or her journey. All you must do is place the ball between your lower back and the wall, and then gently roll downward, as far you comfortably can, while bending your knees and then back up.
15 Get A Gentle Rub Down On Those Pregnant Feet
For centuries women have been receiving foot massages to get their labor going. There are specific pressure points in the foot that can directly affect the womb. When women get a foot massage, the masseuse will rub those specified pressure points which send signals to the brain to start contractions. With most massages lasting anywhere between 15 to 20 minutes, it is an excellent time to allow contractions to begin and, hopefully, start the labor process.
If an expecting mother is past her 38th week and she is looking to evict her baby from her womb, as soon as possible, then a simple foot massage once a day will work wonders. This is an excellent time to ask daddy-to-be to put his hands to work and relieve some of those pressures in the feet, so he can meet his baby sooner also!
Here is a helpful tip: When labor does begin, it is a good idea to ask for a nice relaxing foot massage to help increase and strengthen the intensity of the contractions. The stronger and more consistent the contractions are, the more the path will open up for baby to come right out.
14 Congratulations, It's A Pineapple!
If you find yourself impatiently waiting for the birth of your child, one healthy labor hack would be eating and drinking pineapple juice! Best of all, making a fruit smoothie with some fresh pineapples can be an excellent on-the-go snack or breakfast idea. Pineapples have a proteolytic enzyme in them called bromelain. Bromelain can help soften the womb's walls, induce labor and can make delivering the baby easier for moms.
Make sure they are fresh, as only fresh pineapples have the enzyme needed to start up the labor process.
However, it's important to note that an expecting mama should not eat too much pineapple. Fruits like pineapples, mangos, kiwis, and papaya all have certain medical benefits when eating them due to the proteolytic enzymes they contain. Overeating on pineapple can help with anti-inflammatory properties, while also helping with the digestive system. Eating too much of these fruits may cause additional pregnancy heartburn or have her running to the bathroom.
13 Siracha Lovers, Rejoice!
Spicy foods have a giant green light for go when it comes to jumpstarting labor. Although there is no medical proof that spicy food, or technically any food for that matter, will bring on labor, women who have tried this method highly encourage it. There is a theory that the baby is actually the one who sends his mom's body a signal that says he is ready to come out into the world, which then brings on the joys of labor.
If the spicy food theory is correct, then it may be for many different reasons, as every woman's body is different. For example, the ingredients in spicy foods tend to stimulate or irritate the digestive system. When the stomach of a pregnant woman become irritated, then the womb will start to contract. However, there is a chance of moms-to-be rushing to the bathroom, which can cause dehydration, this is known to cause contractions in an unhealthy manner.
12 Do A Little Jig
Dancing is can be a fun activity to do on a Saturday night or when you're expecting a baby. It can also be a fantastic source of exercise. Nowadays, more and more instructors are coming out with exercise videos that are targeted to help burn calories and work different areas of the body. However, dancing to help place the baby in the correct position and dancing to help bring on labor have now become trending videos.
If you have been on social media, then you have, most likely, seen a number of videos of pregnant women dancing their baby bump off to some catchy music. This is an excellent way to jump-start labor.
Bumping, grinding and twirling those hips can help move the baby into the proper birthing position and standing while dancing can help gravity move the baby into the birthing canal to induce labor.
Mamas, get out there, pick a good song you love to dance to, hold that bolder you've grown and dance it up as much as you can. Just avoid the poles, they can be dangerous to try and do while pregnant.
11 Get Into The Mood
Some alone time with your partner can bring on labor in many different ways. If you are capable of this kind of physical activity, and the doctor has given you a green light to be active, then this is definitely a go-to for a lot of women. When a woman’s body is ready to deliver her baby, it goes into labor, obviously. One hormone that a female body produces, during this pleasurable activity, is called prostaglandin. This hormone is what helps her body go into labor.
Now, men’s swimmers also produce natural prostaglandins and, when they enter into a female’s body, they can help bring her labor game on. A myth that some women swear by, after the deed is done, is women should lay horizontal for a little while. Relaxing with her hips elevated can also help soften and thin the walls to her baby's habitat.
Another great benefit of spending some good O-quality time with your partner is the womb will contract during the big, which is something every couple should do before the baby is born. Once the baby is born, finding time to fit in that wonderf-O feeling will be quite tricky.
10 An Eggplant Parmesan On The Menu
Like spicy food, eggplant doesn’t have any medical proof that it helps bring on labor. There are many women, like those that have eaten spicy food, swear that after eating a dish called eggplant parmesan, they went into labor.
And I thought Italian food was only made for romantic dinners!
Although, eating eggplant parmesan and going into labor could all just be a coincidence, but there are a lot of other ingredients in that specific dish that could have caused it. No one is sure which one, but it's worth a try since it's so incredibly delicious. Specific herbs used to season the eggplant parm include basil and oregano, which are both used to naturally bring on labor. Just because there is no proof doesn’t mean you can’t try it though. Eggplant is healthy, and it won’t harm the baby or yourself if you eat a lot of it.
9 Take A Walk Around The Neighborhood
If you are already experiencing contractions, or at you've reached full term and are ready to give this baby an eviction notice, then staying active and moving around is the best thing you can do. It's important to remember, though, that each person is different and just because a quick walk up the driveway may help some women, it doesn’t mean it will work for you. If your body isn’t ready, then the baby isn’t ready and no home tricks will safely work.
Walking, just like dancing, is another good way to bring on labor. When you are standing upright doing any type of physical activity, gravity helps to encourage the baby to move farther down into your cervix. When this happens the baby stars to put pressure on your cervix, which will then release a hormone that can trigger contractions. If your baby hasn’t moved into the right position yet and you want to induce labor, try walking around the block or down the street a few times. Some women will even take a walk around the mall. It can help to move the baby into the position needed to give birth. Just remember not to overdo it and exhaust yourself.
8 A Toast: To The End Of Pregnancy!
Alcohol is something that should never be ingested while a woman is pregnant. However, there are some OB/GYN who will say one glass here and there is okay, and others who swear that it will give the baby the perfect nudge into labor. Waiting for labor to begin can be a stressful time for any woman.
For women who go past their due dates, and having to lug around their heavy baby bumps longer than expected, can be very stressful.
However, stress can inhibit the ability to go into labor. Some doctors may allow an expecting mother a glass, towards the end, to help her relax, which in return, will help bring on labor.
Above all, wine helps release the hormone called Oxytocin. Oxytocin is what helps mom's parts contract and helps strengthen contractions, which can welcome labor.
7 Try Some Cohosh Plants
Cohosh. You're probably wondering, 'What in the world is a cohosh?' There are two different kinds of cohosh plants. Blue cohosh plant, which is also known as papoose root, and black cohosh, which is also known as snakeroot. When you put together these two cohosh plants they can either jump start labor or slow it down.
Midwives have been using these herbs for centuries to help pregnant women go into labor. However, it's important to note that this method works better when you are already experiencing weak or irregular contractions. Normally, it is used in a tincture form, which a medicine made by using alcohol to extract the substance from the root. But you can also find them in a capsule form or by adding it to teas. Make sure to follow the directions given exactly how they say.
6 Get The Perfect Peach And Baby By Doing Squats
Squatting is another physical activity that you can do to get the labor process going. If you are capable of getting up and doing any physical activity towards the end of your pregnancy, then this one is highly recommended. According to The American Pregnancy Association, squatting can open the pelvic area by 10 percent. Every time you squat, you are creating more room for the baby to move down into your canal, while also strengthening your leg muscles.
Squats can help ease the backed-up scenario you've been facing, put pressure on the pelvic floor, and even help decrease labor time by 11 minutes.
Now, the thought of doing a squat with a 6-10 lbs baby moving around may be a little off-putting for some. Using a kettlebell to help keep your balance, or ask your husband to help guide and support you. Holding the back of the couch or chair can also give you the extra balance you need to stay upright. Regardless how far along you are, just make sure that you are standing with your feet shoulder length apart and slowly lowering your body until your hips are just a few inches above the floor.
5 Just A Spoonful Of Bananas For Mama And Baby
Bananas, as weird as this might sound, is something you might want to try if you are trying to have labor come early. They are a great source of potassium and can also work as a gentle laxative when needed. When you're pregnant, you need to make sure your potassium levels are in normal range, otherwise, it can offset your labor which is not something you want. If you're already experiencing contractions and want to have labor come faster, then make sure to eat some bananas. Bananas will help strengthen your contractions, which will guarantee a shorter, and less painful, labor. However, too many bananas can be severely dangerous to anyone, including pregnant women.
For me, bananas just aren't my thing. If you're like me, this can be challenging, especially when trying to have your baby come faster. However, I will drink a fruit smoothie, or even a milkshake, with bananas blended into them that my husband makes for me. Unfortunately, if you still can’t seem to stomach it, then consult your doctor for potassium capsules.
4 Be A Kid Again, And Swing
If you are looking to do something physical to help induce labor, but also fun at the same time, then here is a method you might like. Go to your local park and take a trip to the swings. Don’t worry, it is ok to be a kid now and again, so swing away.
There is nothing wrong about an 8-month pregnant woman having fun on the swings.
Swinging on a swing has the same effects as walking and dancing. By using this method, you are more likely to help move the baby’s head down into the canal of life, which as a result, will help your body to produce oxytocin, a hormone used to induce labor. The gravity forces, that are experienced while on the swings, will also help to encourage the little one to come on out if he is being stubborn and not want to come out.
3 Basil And Oregano Tea, Yes Please!
Emmenagogues is a word many people probably have never heard of and even fewer people know how to pronounce correctly. Emmenagogues is a substance that is used to increase or stimulate a menstrual cycle. Some cultures actually use basil and oregano, which have emmenagogues in each of these spices.
If emmenagogues are taken in high doses, this can cause the uterus to begin contracting. For women who are brave enough to try this method, be prepared for the foul taste. Some pregnant women cannot stomach it, and for other women, this method may not work. However, basil and oregano can be added to hot water, and sipped on like a tea, throughout the day. If you are past your due date and have permission from a midwife or doctor, then this method will not hurt you to try.
2 Just A Little Dab Of Clary Sage Oil
Before you try any home remedies to jump-start labor, you should always make sure you do your research on it. For this home remedy, clary sage oil should never be used early in pregnancy. Also, this method should never be used without an experienced person nearby. If misused, it can cause complications and be harmful to you and your baby.
Clary sage oil is loaded with a lot of different therapeutic attributes. When it is used correctly, it can be used as an anti-inflammatory, an antibacterial, astringent, antispasmodic, and even help with digestive issues. The biggest reason women try clary sage oil is that it guarantees the beginning of labor if you have reached full term. In order to properly use clary sage oil, dip a few cotton balls in the oil and keep them under your pillow.
The smell will intensify muscle contractions and help bring on labor.
Another way to use clary sage oil is by applying a few drops directly onto your belly, this can help alleviate labor pain by emitting a feeling of euphoria.
1 Put Some Yoga Pants On And Climb Stairs
Earlier in the article, we discussed the benefits of walking to stimulate labor. Climbing stairs is another method that can be used and has the exact same effect as walking. Climbing stairs have many positive effects that can help with labor. Some being that it helps to activate the baby and enlarges the opening and raises the oxytocin degree within your baby's exiting area. It also helps work your thighs which, in turn, helps make more room for your newborn to pass through during labor
Just make sure you don’t push yourself and over exhaust yourself. Climbing stairs can take a lot out of you. Know your personal limits and pay attention to the signs your body is giving off.
References: wehavekids.com, livestrong.com, healthguideinfo.com, newhealthadvisor.com, pregnancymagazine.com, newhealthadvisor.com, herbs.lovetoknow.com, selfgrowth.com, justmommies.com, herhaleness.com, smartmom.co