Tips to Avoid Induction

Tips for Clients
(Ana Hill’s CAPPA training topic)

No complaining about normal discomforts to your care provider- complain to your doula or your friends- but the care provider often feels the need to “fix” it for you with an induction.

Adjusting your expectations about your due date- first time moms are usually pregnant for 41 weeks and a few days, and moms who have given birth before usually go 40 weeks and five days… so remember your due date is a guess date based on a 28 day cycle. Only 4% of moms go into labor on their due date.

Correcting suspect due dates with caregiver- do this early if you do not have a 28 day cycle- advocate for yourself if you know how long your cycle is- share it early on so that is taken into consideration.

No horror stories told or listened to… they affect your mind body connection as well as how your care provider sees you. Don’t listen to the stories and don’t offer up any for him or her to project onto you.

Chiropractor care and prenatal massage is great for helping the baby to be lined up properly. Gail Tully’s website also offers some great guidelines for aligning your baby for optimal fetal positioning. We also offer a great Line Up Your Baby for Labor class.

Sexual activity- those who stayed sexually active tended to not go postdates. The oxytocin and prostaglandins are wonderful ways to get things going.

Prodromal labor is a problem for many moms who have a malpositioned baby- so optimal fetal positioning is important. But often times it is also some issues that are causing fear that will delay labor beginning and sometimes cause labor to become dysfunctional once it does begin.

Some studies are showing perhaps these things can help:

Vitamin D supplementation- 4000 IU daily is recently been linked to more cesareans and malpositioned babies when the Vitamin D is too low… perhaps considered in the way the pelvis is lubed by doing so…

Fish oil- 400 mg DHA daily…matures baby’s brain and helps the mom prevent PPD.

Protein 80 to 100 grams a day.

Rest and hydration go together… don’t over do in the last week as to go into labor and be exhausted. Some say take your current body weight divided by 2 is the number of ounces you may want to drink of water daily.

Consider your expectations and determine if they are realistic with the birth care you have selected. Perhaps a change of venue and care provider will get you the birth you desire.

Keep in mind induction is not the same as labor. Our bodies being pushed into labor is not the same as our body going into labor on its own. Oxytocin and endorphins work very differently than the drugs used for induction- it does not pass the blood brain barrier. It can be more challenging since it brings on a different labor pattern- contractions much closer a lot sooner- transition lasting longer.

Remember what is controllable and what is not. The method of pain relief may not be as effective. The method of birth may be different. Failed inductions does not mean your body failed. The body’s job is to protect the baby from being born too early. So if your body does not think this baby is really ready to be born, your body will try to work against the induction medicine. Some studies show it may increase your cesarean rate by 50% over the normal rate. So understand what happens if it does not work- you may have a cesarean birth.

Find out what your Bishop score is before you go in so you know what your chances are of an induction that may be smoother.

You can consider acupuncture, a competent herbalist, a chiropractor and a massage therapist. There may be some risks to consider when doing herbal or homeopathic or kitchen sink inductions. It is an oxymoron to say “natural induction.” (these are my therapists- my acupuncturist, chiropractor and massage therapist.)

The bottom line is know what to expect and be a great advocate for yourself prior to going to the hospital for your induction.

Consider these sites if your induction does not go as you had hoped. Solace for Mothers and ICAN.