Inducing Labor Naturally

You feel like you've been pregnant forever and even though you've had the odd contraction, things aren't moving quite fast enough for you. If your body is ready to go into labor, and both your body and your baby know when the time is right, inducing labor using natural methods is a great way to get things into motion. It is not invasive and carries very little risk. However, don't put the cart before the horse and be sure to check with your care provider before proceeding with any type of induction method.

Does Sex Induce Labor?

Perhaps one of the most common questions a care provider hears from a woman who is quite tired of being pregnant and wants to see her baby face-to-face is, "Does sex induce labor?" While the idea may be less exciting for a woman than it is for her partner, the answer is that it may help. There is no hard and fast data on the role of sexual intercourse as a method of induction.

It's The Hormones

Actually, it isn't sex itself that is associated with getting labor started. Semen contains natural prostaglandins which help to ripen, or soften, the cervix and cause it to open. When the semen is deposited and it rests against the cervix, it can help it to dilate. It is a good idea to just lie down after sex and allow the prostaglandins to remain against the cervix for as long as possible.

Additionally, the hormone that causes contractions is oxytocin, which is the same hormone that is released during orgasm. The more orgasms a mother has, the more oxytocin that is released. Together with the prostaglandins, sex makes for a good hormone mix which could stimulate labor.

When Intercourse Is No Recourse

Some women have complications which make intercourse too uncomfortable to try or unwise to attempt. Sciatica and pubic symphysis dysfunction are just two of a number of possible circumstances that could affect intercourse. For these situations, there may be an alternative method that could work well. This particular method could also be used by women who are too tired from work and running after their other children, too uncomfortable to even try, or just plain not interested in sex at nine months and waiting.

The alternative is to collect semen in a condom. a diaphragm or an Instead cup (usually used during menstruation to collect menstrual blood), and hold the semen against the cervix. The same effect is obtained in terms of prostaglandin, although unless the woman has an orgasm or applies nipple stimulation, there will not be a release of oxytocin.

At this point, there have not been any studies completed to verify the effectiveness of this method of inducing labor but it might be fun trying.

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