Inducing Labor Naturally

You’ve reached the end of your pregnancy. Your due date has passed and still no baby. Fortunately, there are some safe non-invasive ways to give your baby a gentle nudge down the birth canal. When should you consider self-induction and what methods work best? Today we’re separating fact from fiction.

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Preggie Pals
“Inducing Labor Naturally”
Episode 10, July 1st, 2012

Please be advised, this transcription was performed from a company independent of New Mommy Media, LLC. As such, translation was required which may alter the accuracy of the transcription.

[00:00:00]
[Music]
Dawn Thompson : You have reached the end of your pregnancy. Your due date has passed and still no baby. Fortunately there are some ways non-invasive ways to give your baby a gentle nudge down the birth canal. I am Dawn Thompson, Doula and founder of http://www.improvingbirth.org and today, we will explore ways to induce labor naturally. This is Preggie Pals, Episode 10.
[Theme Music/Intro]
Sunny Gault : Welcome to Preggie Pals broadcasting from the Birth Education Center of San Diego. I am your host Sunny Gault. We would love for you to become a part of our show. Simply visit our website http://www.preggiepals.com for more information. You can send us comments or suggestions through the contact link on our website or you can call the Preggie Pals hotline at 619-866-4775. Preggie Pals is also looking for pregnant women to join our blogging team. Send us an email through our website if you are interested. Alright, let’s start with our introductions and Kelli wants to kick things off.
Kelli Auld : Hi, I am Kelli, I am a kindergarten teacher. I am due end of June, 23rd with our first and it’s gonna be a surprise. We don’t know it’s a boy or girl and we are having a natural home birth.
Cherri Christiansen : Hi, I am Cherri I work in Market research. I am also due on the 23rd of June. It is our first. We are also waiting for the surprise and we are planning a home birth.
Sunny Gault : You guys are just so patient waiting for the baby’s gender and having a home birth “I am like get the baby out now”. I’m in awe really.
Cherri Christiansen : You know what it’s funny because people will ask me all the time about how can you be waiting? How can you be waiting and until this point I’ve waited so long, what an extra 4 or 5 weeks. It’s nothing you know.
Sunny Gault : Yeah, that’s true.
Cherri Christiansen : And it’s exciting actually the longer I waited the more exciting it’s become. And what’s really funny is I have been watching this random videos on YouTube of these women having these home births where it’s like a couple of minutes after the baby is out and all of a sudden someone is like what is it? Like the mom hasn’t even looked the baby and they’re so caught up in the baby, they are like “Oh!” and you see them lifting the baby up “Oh! It’s a boy” but it’s amazing because I think people expect that’s gonna be the first second the baby is out and it’s so not.
[Theme Music]
[Featured Segment: Maternity Fashion Trends]

Sunny Gault : Before we start today’s show here are some fabulous maternity fashion trends.
Kristen Stewart : Hello, Preggie Pals I am Kristen Stewart maternity fashion expert and founder of Borrow for your Bump or you can buy or rent designer maternity styles on a monthly rate. So, why don’t we have a way for making things look easy. Jennifer Garner, Jennifer Jones, J’Lo all the latest celebrities do sport bumps and look good by doing it. Sure they have a maternity stylist but in this segment we are gonna share their maternity style secrets. First, shop for transitional pieces that will take you beyond 9 months, long gone are the days that the feeding blouse that’s great for maternity. The tennis gown and many designers are craving styles that can be worn beyond the expecting 9 months for example a dress with an empire waist is great throughout pregnancy and even post baby. Most empire waist dress styles are made of a stretchy or flowing material and also include an adjustable bow is great for comfort, creating curves and adjusting to your changing body size. You can also include items out of your closet too that will fit you in a new shape think open cardigans and long tunics. Second don’t forget to show off your assets. Just because you are pregnant does not mean you need to cover yourself up in a Moo Moo. As your bump grows so other parts in your body and it is time to show it off. If you have never had cleavage before try a V neck top or dress or if you are still a little self-conscious about the changes up top you always have your fabulous legs which can be shown off in a maternity mini dress. We like the short dress by the maternal America. This V neck above the knee dress offers some alternative coverage with three quarters sleeve and it is available in feather red or navy colors. Third secret is give yourself some shape. Not all maternity styles are form fitting, sometimes a cute type dress can just look flattering. Just don’t forget the power of the belt. By adding a belt below the bust you create an empire waist which is the most flattering look for a growing bump. Don’t forget a belt can work under the bump too. Try this with fun tunics and monk tees and even maxi skirts. A perfect celebrity role model that rocks the belt with different looks is story spelling you can be named as an expert of pregnancy. She does had baby number three and just 6 weeks after giving birth is pregnant again. Just remember don’t pinch that belt too tight. Being stylish is making it look easy and comfortable, not painful. Keep your signature style. If you are known as the edgy dresser, don’t stop looking the part just because you are expecting. You make it work by substituting those sky high skinny heels and mini dress for some flat over the knee boots and a shoulder tint dress. And if it is still pull off the outragious six inch heels like J’Lo during her trimester, well then you go girl. If you want to make your edgey look comfortable just pair skinny jeans, a fitted T and a blazer. This is also a fun time to experiment with some new looks without getting too crazy with the acid washed jeans. You can create retro look as simple as adding a red blip in a sweeping hair style with some black skinny jeans and a white T- think Gwen Stephani. or get into the summer love look by wearing a comfortable maxi and flat sandals. You can add a head band or side braid if you really want to complete a hippy chick look. But be careful if you’re petitte though because sometimes the long maxi and a bump can be overwhelming to such a small frame. Overall get comfortable with a new look whether it’s with bold make up or a skinny jean. Try one trend at a time and once you get comfortable you can start mixing and matching and you can try bolder looks. By adding a few of these style secrets, you feel fabulous with new trends with the confidence of the A list celebrities. Don’t forget to check out more celebrity styles at http://www.borrowforyourbump.com and be sure to listen to Preggie Pals for more great pregnancy tips.
[00:06:22]
[Music]
Sunny Gault : You have waited 9 months for your baby and despite being past your due date your baby has still not made his grand debut. There are many wide styles about ways you can induce your labor but what really works? Does anything really work? And is it safe for you and your baby? Dawn Thompson, a Doula and founder of http://www.improvingbirth.org is here to help us separate facts from fiction. Welcome, Dawn.
Dawn Thompson : Thank you very much. I am glad to be here.
Sunny Gault : Okay, so first of all I wish to just ask a general question. Are there ways to safely ,induce your labor naturally?
Dawn Thompson : Well, I think that there is probably a question of safe, yes you know I think whether or not you get what you would like to have happened is a whole another question all together.
Sunny Gault : Okay, so there are things we can do that aren’t going to harm us but are they really gonna get that baby out, does it depend on our bodies too?
Dawn Thompson : Absolutely, it depends on whether or not you are really ready. You know, good portion like something like 72% of first time moms go 7 to 10 days past their due dates. And so if you are trying at your due date probably not gonna work. If you are close, really close to giving birth and usually I would say only to choose the majority of these things if your body is showing signs. So, like you know, you are already having irritable uterus meaning like, it’s contracting often and but nothing is consistent and sending you on to the next, the next level but if you have got nothing going on, most of these things are absolutely useless.
Sunny Gault : I did hear someone told me I think, it was actually my last OB, he told me that even though it was my second child that the baby you know, didn’t have any chances really of coming early you know you hear that “Oh! What’s your second child” So you probably not go past your due date. What has been your experience with that Dawn? I am just curious.
Dawn Thompson : Well, I think that there is no way to pin point that at all and it’s you know, there is probably the statistics that show that some second time babies come like, right around the due date. But if you have a longer cycle generally you know, if you are, if you are natural cycle is 30 days you’re probably gonna go to 41 weeks at least and that range is true for women who are first time moms too. If you have a longer cycle you are gonna have a longer gestation probably. So, that’s something unfortunately that, that little wheel doesn’t take into account.
Sunny Gault : And you know what wheel she’s talking about, right? [laughter]
Cherri Christiansen: Okay, you know what amazes me about that magic wheel by the way is that three different people have given three different dates with the same magic wheel. So, I don’t know how much magic there is in the wheel.
Sunny Gault : So, it’s not very magical. It’s like the magic eight ball. It doesn’t really work. [Multiple Speakers]
Cherri Christiansen : They all ask me for the same thing you know, the first day of my last period that didn’t, I didn’t give them three different dates. I don’t buy that one at all.
Dawn Thompson : I mean the problem with the due date was it never meant to be an exact science. It was meant to be an estimate really original person who did the 40 weeks thing with the due date also prefers that it was you know a two week window you know, a 40 to 42 weeks you know. And so, it never meant to be an exact science so, it was always kind of a crazy one. People except the baby to come on the day that they are due or even a day after or you know, I mean statistically speaking it just doesn’t happen. It’s a very, very small percentage of women who have the babies on their due date.
[00:09:46]
Cherri Christiansen : So, many people have asked me when are you due? When are you due? And I say on June and When? “In June!” You know like it frustrates them but I am like “In June” you know, give or take second, third week somewhere around that. I don’t want to take how funny other people feel like, I have to have that exact date. Are you writing this down so you can call me on my due date to see if I am in labor or something you know.
Sunny Gault : Or check in Facebook.
Cherri Christiansen : Which is a part of reason why I just say June.
Dawn Thompson : I always tell people to turn off their cell phones after their due date because they are gonna get 25 calls every single day.
Sunny Gault : Is the baby here yet?
Dawn Thompson : Exactly.
Sunny Gault : So, what are some good reasons for inducing our labor? I mean, are there bad reasons? I mean, obviously we do wanna wait till our past due dates because, right?
Dawn Thompson : Exactly.
Sunny Gault : Because you can get in trouble there.
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, for sure and I think the other important thing to consider is are we looking at, are you stirring at your 42 weeks? That to me would be the only time to try natural induction processes or if you are really you know, irritable, you’re just not sleeping you know all of those things. At the end that might be an Okay time but typically I would say don’t do any of these things until you are at least 41 weeks past. You know and you can do some of these things or talk about eating pineapple and spicy foods go for it. You might deal with heartburn, ladies but you know, I mean that’s, that’s certainly not gonna be only harm that will do is you know probably will give a heartburn.
Sunny Gault : And have you helped women in the past and induce themselves and what’s your policy on that?
Dawn Thompson : Sure, I mean there is definitely I think that I have learnt more over the years and I am certainly less inclined to do it. I will just share you know one experience of a mom of that she was a first time mom, she was two days past her due date desperately wanting to you know, go into labor and she called me and said what do you think about doing castor oil. And I said “Don’t do it” you know, it absolutely can cause an irritable uterus because what it does irritates the bowls which will in fact give you Diarrhea. The Diarrhea then irritates the uterus which sometimes than can make it go into labor wards then it starts contracting. The problem with it is often will hyper stimulate the uterus and this was exactly she hung up the phone with me and did it anyways.
Sunny Gault : Oh! No.
Dawn Thompson : And I warned being with her for 36 hours because she did in fact go into labor and she went to into like 3 minute apart searches that were you know, to her very, very powerful and in the end it never went away. It just lasted for you know, two days. And you know when you see that sort of things you just see “Don’t do it, it’s not worth it”
Sunny Gault : Yeah.
Dawn Thompson : If you are saying that, I say, castor oil absolutely can work and if you are staring down at that 42 weeks and you are with an OBGYN and you know that you are having to fight for every minute, hour, day to not have an induction with pitocin so you know go down the whole list. That’s the only time I would recommend it.
Sunny Gault : Yeah.
Kelli Auld : And that was recommended to me and this was sort of a you know you are like a day away from being induced and you wanna avoid that and then the last resort would be the castor oil.
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, and I wanna be really clear unless it’s medically indicated 42 weeks, that’s the deadline not 41 weeks, not 41 weeks and 2 days, 42 weeks that’s what A Cock says, that’s what all the journals put out but unfortunately many OBGYNs do not practice that way.
Sunny Gault : And is that because the placenta starts to deteriorate at that point?
Dawn Thompson : There is a possibility of it but unless there are signs showing them that’s happening most placentas are just fine.
Sunny Gault : Alright, Okay.
Cherri Christiansen : Then is that the baby’s size, that was one thing that was being told to me that is that they were worried about the baby getting too big if it’s staying in there for too long.
Dawn Thompson : Well, there used to be, you know, the thought that the babies would gain half a pound a week and that’s absolutely not true. You are talking about a couple of ounces and if you see you know, as a doula we see a child that 7 pounds 2 ounces and we see a child that’s 7 pounds 8 ounces you can’t tell the difference. There is not you know, when you are talking about the physiological portion of the body the head is not growing.
Sunny Gault : Alright.
Dawn Thompson : Alright, the chub which is very squishy and moves right through the vaginal canal just fine doesn’t change. The heads are comfortable and at a point it doesn’t change which is the biggest part of the baby that is coming through. So, the whole the baby is getting too big is totally….
Cherri Christiansen : To go from a 7 pound baby to 10 pound baby you know waiting for a week or two.
Dawn Thompson : Or a couple of days. I mean even if you are waiting for 40 to 42 weeks, you are probably not still not gonna get this you know, your body knows to do, ladies.
Kelli Auld : When the moms are begging to…[Laughs] [Multiple Speakers]
Dawn Thompson : That’s exactly what most of the time happens.
Sunny Gault : Well, let’s talk about what’s happening within the body when labor does start I mean medically Dawn, what happens within our body is to kind of kick start that labor process?
[00:14:57]
Dawn Thompson : Well, there is an intricate hormone you know, thing that happens that we really don’t clearly understand. But you know we are not sure if the baby releases the hormone or the mom releases the hormone but somebody releases the hormone that triggers the labor. And you know, if you, that’s a problem with synthetic induction, doing pitocin is that you are forcing the body by putting pitocin or a synthetic form of the drug but it is not coming from the brain and the baby has not really potentially the hormones that they need to release in order to give birth.
Sunny Gault : Okay.
Dawn Thompson : So, that’s why pitocin is so dangerous. The other thing that I have experienced too is with a mom of it you know, who is being induced for preeclampsia is that her body you know, their body is, your body is also sending off all of these hormones beyond the oxytocin it’s, it’s this huge intricate dance, right? And a lot of those are relaxants and when you are having induction in 40 weeks or 39 weeks which is unfortunately very frequent these days, your body hasn’t got other relaxants to allow the pelvis to open so, a lot of these women will dilate to 8, 9, 10 centimeters but their baby can’t come down and then they are told “Oh! That’s because your pelvis is too small your baby was too big” No one says it’s actually because we artificially started this labor, your body is not giving out all the hormones that it needs to open and relax and open your vagina, open your pelvis and so, your pelvis is static. It is staying in the place because it doesn’t have all the relaxants to do that so, whenever you are trigging even some of these imitation things, you are still you know, some of these supposedly safe things, you are still running the same risk.
Sunny Gault : So, what do we do if we are in that position? How do we avoid something like that?
Dawn Thompson : We wait for your body to do what it is supposed to do.
Sunny Gault : Unless the doctor is like “No, it’s coming out now”
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, I mean well yeah for sure. I mean, if you are dealing with that and you are looking at 42 weeks, there is some risks once you pass 42 weeks. But that’s the key as the risks go up when you pass 42 weeks not 41 weeks, not 40 weeks.
Sunny Gault : Alright.
Dawn Thompson : 42 weeks.
Sunny Gault : Yeah, well I am excited to dive into some of these ways to induce labor. When we come back we are gonna discuss the most common ways women try to induce labor and we are gonna find out if any of these actually work? Will be right back!
[Music]
Sunny Gault : Welcome back everyone, we are talking about ways to induce labor naturally which I think there is probably a lot of women out there who are at the end of their due date or couple of weeks passed that are like “Come on guys, let’s get this baby out” So, what are some of the common ways on that women try to induce their labor and is it safe?
Dawn Thompson : Well, let’s go through some of these you know, these list of things because some of these things have great incredible benefits that are beyond induction. So, one of the first things here listed is Acupuncture. Acupuncture has a lot of amazing benefits beyond induction. It gets the body flowing in all the right directions and but it’s probably, probably one of the most effective ways that I have seen labor get going is through Acupuncture. Acupuncture is also really great for helping with breach babies and things of that nature. Having sex and having orgasm and just say you know those are two separate things and sometimes they need to be separate things. I encourage my mamas to have you know get a little comfortable with yourself and because orgasm sends oxytocin to your body and if your body is ready it can in fact trigger labor. Not to mention the benefits of having inner core is that there is proxi glands in your husband’s semen is great up against your cervix. It can help melt away your cervix. So, you know there is lots of great things but again the oxytocin is the No.1 thing for sex and orgasm so, absolutely No. 1 thing to keep doing at the end of pregnancy is when a lot of women stop doing it.
Cherri Christianesen : No matter how big and awkward you may feel.
Kelli Auld : Absolutely it sounds like the worst idea.
Dawn Thompson : I know, right. But listen, it’s self-stimulation though because it is really more about the orgasm than it is about inner course. So, I mean the proxi glands are in the semen but you know the orgasm is really the key and so even if it is more comfortable to get you know have self-stimulation and not have your husband involved. That’s really “Okay” or have him involved but it is a clitoral stimulation and not necessarily an internal, orgasm is totally fine. Nipple stimulation is great. It can also again though hyper-stimulate the uterus so being careful just you know, mild stimulation. The great thing about nipple stimulation is that if it does start labor and it gets a little too intense you just stop doing it and it typically will back off the surges.
[00:20:03]
Kelli Auld : Not to be too graphic with that but a question I mean what, I keep saying that nipple stimulation, I hear but it. What does that really involve?
Dawn Thompson : We are tuning in Tokyo.
Kelli Auld : Is it more of a pinch or a rub or….?
Dawn Thompson : No, it’s a twisting, turning you know I mean it’s definitely,
Sunny Gault : Is it supposed to feel good?
Dawn Thompson : I am on radio I can’t, I am listening what’s going on here today. No, I mean it’s definitely more aggessive.
Sunny Gault : Does it supposed to feel good?
Dawn Thompson : No, Okay, okay.
Sunny Gault : I think that’s big-- I think when you hear stimulation I think a lot of people feel it supposed to feel good.
Dawn Thompson : I mean it suppose it could you know, I think it depends on where you are mentally, right? So, I mean I absolutely think that you, you know it could feel good but I am just saying to be effective…
Kelli Auld : Is this something we are doing for 30 seconds or 30 minutes?
Dawn Thompson : It depends on what you are trying to get going you know, I mean it depends on if I mean, nipple stimulation is usually used when labor is already in progress and has kind of died down a little bit, not so much of getting labor started.
Kelli Auld : Okay, gotcha.
Dawn Thompson : But it could,
Kelli Auld : So, you would know pretty quickly if it is helping or if it is not?
Dawn Thompson : Absolutely,
Kelli Auld : You will be able to tell us.
Dawn Thompson : Absolutely, yeah long walks, galloping.
Sunny Gault : I saw galloping online it was actually video on it, if you guys Google it I think,
Kelli Auld : Galloping like horse galloping?
Dawn Thompson : Not riding a horse but just skipping.
Kelli Auld : Yeah, right.
Dawn Thompson : Skipping along,
Kelli Auld : With the big belly.
Dawn Thompson : You know I think what happens with that is what it does is it helps bring the baby into the pelvis, the giggling and that’s probably you know I mean you could obtain that in many other ways other galloping. You know imagine your baby is getting a little jarred in there it wouldn’t be that pleasant but you know I would much rather see mom do lunges you know, like we call it the “Captain Morgan Lunge” were you know the Captain Morgan he has got his leg up on the chair on the bow actually……
Sunny Gault : Oh! Yeah, yeah.
Dawn Thompson : So, you know in those situations you want your belly facing forward and your leg out to the side and what does is helps open your pelvis and if you lean like if you are using a chair or whatever and you lean into the chair you know your knee going to the back of the chair making sure you are holding onto the chair, ladies. The balance is a little crazy but what that does is it really helps open the pelvis and get the baby in the pelvis. And then in turn what that does is that then it puts the baby’s pressure, the baby’s head against the cervix which then can cause labor to start because it helps start releasing proxy glands.
Sunny Gault : Okay, swimming?
Dawn Thompson : Swimming, I don’t know that, that’s an induction. I think that’s it’s a fantastic thing to do to relieve pressure.
Sunny Gault : What about just getting your heart rate up. I think that’s kind of where they are going with some others whether it’s a long walk or galloping. That doesn’t really do much to get your heart rate up?
Dawn Thompson : No, I think that it’s certainly a lovely thing to do at the end of pregnancy though to release all the pressures on the body, it feels great to be in there. It’s a great thing to do if your baby is in a funky position though. Dangling the belly in the water because ultimately gravity works right in and if your baby is posterior or if you have got a breach baby, swimming is fantastic.
Sunny Gault : Oh! Nice.
Cherri Christiansen : I would just in general be a little bit heard so many things that has involved exercise and that sort of thing but for someone like Kelly and I who are doing this at home and un-medicated I would be worried you know people say “Go for this great long hike” and then I get home and I am exhausted and now I am going into labor now I need all my energy. But you know I just hiked for the last 3 hours I would wanna try and do something that was like a little less strenuous first.
Dawn Thompson : I mean I would say go for a walk on the beach you know, it’s superb and relaxing. I suppose the people who are listening are like walk on the roads of San Diego. So, anyways stretching, squatting I have just talked about that absolutely because again what this is doing bouncing on the birth ball?
Cherri Christiansen : Is that different to the squatting?
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, it’s essentially the exact same thing. You are getting the pelvis open and what happens is it allows the baby to drop into the pelvis which then puts pressure on the cervix which then can trigger everything to get going. Meditation, visualization and telling your baby to come out I don’t know that this is an induction but it certainly can help from an emotionally stand point. A lot of times there is emotional barriers. There is fear that can absolutely prevent labor from coming and so I think that’s really important to do from a mental stand point. It’s not necessarily going to induce the labor but you know, it’s certainly a healthy practice no matter what.
Sunny Gault : I thought it was interesting to tell your baby to come out. You know, it’s like does the baby really listening but as you said it’s more of like a process for you.
[00:25:01]
Dawn Thompson : Absolutely.
Sunny Gault : This is gonna happen, this is natural.
Dawn Thompson : What I think that it puts you in a place of being ready you know, because by telling your baby that you are ready that you are ready, that’s part of the getting ready process, right? It is going like Okay, I am embracing this because ultimately you have to embrace labor to come, you have to. You know, this is much mental in the beginning as it is physical.
Sunny Gault : Alright.
Dawn Thompson : Let’s say pressure points so I probably, this is probably the thing that I use the most as a doula. If I have a mama that’s having a lot irritable surges and like they were up the whole night before with surges that kept waking them up and I call them surges instead of contractions so, just a nicer word, yeah. If you know, there is a lot of that and they might be having it for days on end I will come over and do pressure points for them and including with the foot massage or whatever just a help. Sometimes it is to help them just relax and that will do it enough but then also work in the pressure points but, that absolutely works.
Sunny Gault : What are pressure points? Are there any specific areas of the body that you just apply pressure?
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, absolutely there is pressure points that has to do with Acupuncture or Acupressure points in your body. And if you go online you could pretty much just do Acupressure points for labor and you will get a whole slew of them and which directions on, where they are probably the most common one is on the inside of the leg about 3 inches up from the ankle bone that’s probably the very No.1 spot. And it’s very easy to find because there is a dent in your leg and when you are at the end of pregnancy,
Sunny Gault : We are all looking at our legs.
Dawn Thompson : And when you are at the end of pregnancy it’s very tender.
Sunny Gault : Oh!
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, yeah you know, and so there is gonna be directions on how to use that but that’s really great also if your labor is kind of stalling, that’s a fantastic way to keep instead of you know, if you are in the hospital or at home and they are starting to talk other induction that is not so natural, this is a great way of place to go first.
Sunny Gault : Okay.
Dawn Thompson : The spicy food you know, I mean it’s one of those old wife’s tales.
Sunny Gault : I hear it all the time.
Dawn Thompson : I think that there is somebody who said and you know, I mean this is kind of obscure but I have heard there’s some sort of enzyme in the eggplant and in the pineapple, there is discussion here that could potentially do something. But often I think it’s just coincidence you know, because you hear people who have it you know “I have eaten the spicy food, spicy eggplant three days in a row,” you know, you know and “It’s not doing anything you know” And you have got the person like “I told you not to eat spicy food” and now I’m in labor, I mean you just kind of let it go. I think it’s just coincidental, at least that’s my belief.
Cherri Christiansen : Those are kind of related to the milder version of the castor oil, you just getting your intestines,
Dawn Thompson : It’s probably, it’s possibly giving you self-tired.
Cherri Christiansen : Yeah.
Dawn Thompson : That’s probably true, Yeah. And castor oil is definitely you know, Wow! That can really cause a lot of challenges and beyond the facts that it could hyper stimulate your uterus which is usually the side effect that happens but also the diarrhea that comes along with it. There is lots of different policies about how much you should take.
Sunny Gault : I was just gonna tell.
Dawn Thompson : A spoonful is it, I mean I have seen women taking have a bottle and that is not recommended.
Sunny Gault : How do you even choke that down?
Dawn Thompson : We most people put it in juice or whatever, but if you are gonna do it and if you are at 42 weeks and you are getting a tremendous amount of pressure to you know, like tomorrow at 7 am you are gonna be induced with pitocin, then by all means go for the castor oil you know, but understand that there are some negative side effects to that and having explosive diarrhea during labor is probably not gonna be your favorite thing to have happen. Cohos you absolutely can get that sort of thing over counter at Henry’s or general stores.
Sunny Gault : It is an herb?
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, it is an herb.
Kelli Auld : It is blue and black color herb?
Dawn Thompson : Yeah, it is blue and black color herb but I would never recommend doing that without a prescription from your midwife not a prescription but a recommendation from your midwife of OB. Although OB’s typically don’t so I would go, if you are with an OB I would go to naturopath and get clear directions on how to use it and when to use it. It’s another thing that can absolutely be successful. If it’s your second or third baby it can be extremely successful and you know, baby in the car on the side of the road so it can be successful so you gotta to be careful with it and take it appropriately. And then but the other thing, great thing about this is that it will not work unless your body is ready. Evening primrose oil again, it’s not an induction. It’s a, there is a lot of mid wives who suggest taking it in orally the entire pregnancy or 36 weeks taking it vaginally. And what it does is it helps smooth out the cervix so essentially like, I typically discuss it a lot with the cervical scar tissue discussion, alright because if you have cervical scar tissue it will actually help soften any scar tissue that you might have on your cervix. So, there is some great benefits to it. Some women have experienced to get itchy with it and so obviously if it is happening you probably don’t want you know not do it. There is another thing called Borage oil which is basically the same idea but I have heard that people say Borage oil is actually better. It’s a more concentrated thing than evening primrose oil so but, I think again you have to talk to a Naturopath or your mid wife about taking that I wouldn’t go to a store and buy some because it comes in the little tiny pills you know that little sugar pills is one of the ways you can take it. And you don’t the directions on the side of the bottle are not for labor induction you know, so it’s not gonna tell you appropriately how you take it? How much and how often? And all those things so you need to make sure that you talk to the professional about that.
[00:31:05]
Sunny Gault : Good advice.
Dawn Thompson : Thanks.
Sunny Gault : Thank you so much for being here Dawn it was fun talking to you. Tell us some more about http://www.improvingbirth.org.
Dawn Thompson : Well, it’s a non-profit organization that is working to reduce the unnecessary induction and unnecessary C section in this country. It’s currently right now at 32% which means one in three, more than one in three women are having cesareans. And the induction rate is even higher than that, it is 42% so you know we are just trying to bring awareness.
Sunny Gault : Awesome, thanks Dawn.
Dawn Thompson : Thank you.
[Music]
[Featured Segment: Ask The Experts]

[00:31:40]
Sunny Gault : Here is a question for one of our experts.
Heidi : Hi, my name is Heidi and I am calling from Chicago. I am hoping that one of your experts can talk a little bit about the late cord clamping. My husband and I are planning to give birth at a hospital and my OBGYN is pretty traditional when it comes to the whole labor and delivery process. They’re not sold on the idea of waiting to cut the cord and I have heard a lot of benefits in doing this. Can you talk about benefits and any risks that I should be concerned about. Thank you so much.
Sunny Gault : Here is the response from our doula, Care Messer.
Care Messer: Hi, Heidi! Early cord clamping has a lot of information on it I am gonna try and summarize it for you. It is adoptively new it was from 1940’s it was practiced in few countries but it is a standard practice here in America. Study show that half of your baby’s blood vine will remain centered at the time of birth. And think about it, its nature’s way it is slowly transitioning your baby to breathing and surviving on its own and outside the world. Your baby is still getting oxygen through the cord while it’s working on taking the first breathe, adequate blood vine is needed to profuse the lungs, you have got kidneys, skin and the blood transition from the placenta is known as placental transfusion. It is very important especially in preterm infants, research has shown an increased need for blood transfusions and possible brain injuries. Gravity does affect the transfer of blood, the optimal transition for this is baby right arm’s chest till that cord implications stops to know whether the transfer is complete. The process usually takes 3 minutes might be a little longer or it can also complete only 1 minute, it just varies from baby to baby. The risks are believed to be increase in Jaundice because blood will drain back out of the babies when the cord is not clamped and Jaundice is almost when a baby gets through blood there is no evidence or effects from this mild Jaundice. Most of the human babies have some mild Jaundice when the baby is lifted above the uterus clamp like a cesarean blood will drain back in by gravity during the baby receiving less than the expected blood volume. The consequence of this may be an increased risk in breathing or respiratory distress, and several studies have shown this respiratory distress condition which is common in C section babies can be completely eliminated when full placental transfusion is allowed. It also showed that the early cord clamping can increase fetal hemoglobin, baby’s blood volume and increases the long term iron stores in baby so it is really good for them. And the most basic argument for cord clamping is essentially if it were injurous or detrimental to us, then humans would have become extinct long before the invention of clamping of the cord. Leaving the cord alone, it’s been done since time began, it’s all over the world and everybody is still here. You can learn more about the studies finding from the cord clamping watching a short video on YouTube called “delayed cord clamping grand grounds” of Dr. Nick Fogelson, or check out the site http://www.birth-brain-injury.org with some great illustrations and diagrams to explore on that site. Hope that helped with lot of information out there so, good luck and make your decision right.
Sunny Gault : That wraps up our show for today. If you have a pregnancy topic you would like to suggest, we would love to hear it. Visit our website, http://www.preggiepals.com and send us an email through the contact link and if you have any questions about today’s show or the topics we discussed call our Preggie Pals hotline at 619-866-4775 and will answer your questions on an upcoming episode. Thanks for listening to Preggie Pals, “your pregnancy, your way.”
[Disclaimer]
This has been a New Mommy Media Production. The information and materials contained in this episode are presented for educational purposes only. Statements and opinions expressed in this episode are not necessarily those of New Mommy Media and should not be considered facts. Though such information materials are believed to be accurate, it is not intended to replace or substitute for professional, medical advisor care and should not be used for diagnosing or treating health care problems or disease or prescribing any medication. If you have questions or concerns regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your baby, please seek assistance from a qualified healthcare provider.
[00:36:09] [End Of Audio]