The latter days of pregnancy can be the most irritating. The pregnant woman's body is being pushed to the limit and the baby is weighing more than ever. The baby’s size can make eating, drinking, breathing and sleeping very difficult for the woman, and the bed is often where she spends most of her time. When resting in bed, mom may search for the fastest way to self-induce labor from home and may come across some interesting prospects along the way:
Sex to Induce Labor
Some doctors call this method a myth while others prescribe sex to patients who want to self-induce labor. Sex combines the effects of prostaglandins and Oxytocin which are both necessary for labor.
Spicy Foods and Castor Oil
Spicy foods will not induce labor to start any earlier than Mother Nature, but castor oil may help speed up the process a bit. There have been research studies proving that castor oil, with its laxative and intestinal effects, may help to start labor. Unfortunately, there are no set guidelines for castor oil consumption while pregnant, so pregnant women should stay away from the oil for the safety of baby.
Exercise may help to induce labor, but not because of all the jumping up and down. When the body becomes dehydrated, a hormone similar to Oxytocin is released to preserve water stores in the body. This hormone can cause labor-like symptoms which is probably why pregnant women feel contractions when exercising. While exercise is often permitted up until the 40th week of pregnancy, it is important to keep heart rate below 125 and stay hydrated. Less water for the pregnant woman means less hydration for the baby. Dehydration is a common cause of early labor symptoms.
Despite the fact that most hospitals have pregnant women walking around during labor, there is no proof that walking before labor has started will cause the baby to come any faster. The movement will help to move the baby further into the birth canal, but that is about its only effect.