Natural methods to stimulate labour can be safe and effective. Walking is one way to help with the transition. According to Dr. Heather Irobunda, MD, board-certified OB/GYN based in New York City, there aren’t any exercises that have been shown to cause women to go back to work if your body wasn’t yet starting the process. However, it will help prepare your body for what’s to come, according to Dr. Irobunda. There aren’t any exercises that have been shown. If you’re new to work, you may be able to work.
Medical Methods For Inducing Labor
A mother may want to induce: anxiety, the desire for her OB/GYN to be present at the birth (kids create scheduling conflicts before they’re even born), or an overdue pregnancy are all reasons. Fortunately, parents can plan ahead, making labour induction something of a contingency plan.
“When it comes to induction, have a positive chat with your healthcare provider about your expectations and what the doctor recommends and come up with a strategy together,” Auguste says. “When people do that, the induction process is less frightening.” The first step a doctor will take to try and induce labor is called membrane stripping, also known as “meep” in which the doctor inserts a finger into the cervix and performs a “sweep” to separate the uterus and the amniotic sack, releasing those induction-sparking prostaglandins. Doctors will often use a “ripened” cervix to get contractions going, but it’s an uncomfortable-routine natural treatment.
Medical induction is also a possibility, and it’s all very straightforward. Doctors could administer an IV of Pitocin, the most commonly used induction treatment, if a cervix is “ripe” — the start of dilation. It is a synthetic form of the hormone oxytocin. However, doctors can use misoprostol or other prostaglandin drugs in order to start the cervix ripening and getting it ready for contractions.
It’s all very interesting and common stuff, but not something that an expectant mother has a ton of say in. To be a good partner and support in the search for more work in lieu of elective induction, get ready for some leisurely strolls.
Which Exercises Can Help?
So what are the best exercises to induce labour at 40 weeks, and are there any promised ways to boost physical activity?
All Fours Deep Diaphragmatic Breaths This is a great low-impact workout to start off with and one you can do anytime to relax. Breath work is mixed with pelvic floor mobilization in this exercise.
For this breath workout, get down to all fours, with your shoulders over your wrists and your knees aligned with your hips. Each exhale as long as possible, with breath in and out rhythmically through your nose. With a slow-pushing movement, try to concentrate on lengthening your pelvic floor on each inhale. When you exhale, concentrate on bringing the pelvic floor back to life. This activity will naturally soften your pelvic floor.
Getting on all fours to spark labour is unlikely, as simply getting into this position would not guarantee you go into active work, but this action will help get the baby into the right frame to start the process.
Pelvic Tilts Why not try pelvic tilts to stimulate labour? This workout is similar to a common yoga exercise, the Cat-Cow yoga pose. To get to all fours, you must lift your hips and your wrists directly below your shoulders.
Start slowly breathing in and exhaling. On each exhale, gently tilt your pelvis inwards toward your belly. On each exhale, tilt your pelvis outwards toward the sky. You can also incorporate pelvic floor exercises into this workout by releasing and contracting your pelvic floor in time with your breathing.
Many people use yoga to induce labor because it relaxes both the mind and the body, and it doesn’t have to be strenuous.
Squatting is a safe and natural birthing position, and doing regular squats near the end of your pregnancy will show your body that it is ready for labor.
To do squats, stand with your feet hip-distance apart, with your feet slightly pointed outwards. Bend your knees and lower yourself until your butt is about knee-level. If you don’t want to topple over, don’t go too far! To return to a standing position, you can ground yourself through your feet. If you’re secure with your squats, you can try to go lower if you like, or hold the pose at the lowest level and concentrate on your breathing. Holding your squat helps to open your hips and lengthen the pelvic floor.
Cat Stretch This is another of the more subtle suggested exercises to produce labour at 38 weeks and beyond.
For your starting position, get to your hands and knees. Make sure your lower back is straight and that your spine is long by retaining your neck. If you’re doing the workout or not, take a look at the top of the page. To look up, don’t strain your neck.
As you inhale, gently lift your hips back to your feet and bring your hips right back to where they were starting from.
Precautions To Take When Doing Exercise To Induce Labour
Both you and the baby will benefit from exercising to stimulate labour. However, there are some simple steps that will go a long way in this difficult period. Here are a few things you may want to do before, during, and after workouts. Be sure to hydrate yourself.
Make sure you’re wearing a bra that fully supports your breasts and keeps you comfortable.
Keep moving. This does not mean that you don’t sit and relax; it does mean that you should avoid laying on your back or sitting all the time because doing so will cause your muscles to stiffen. You can also benefit from regular movement of your legs, arms, and the rest of your body every now and then.
Regular exercise throughout pregnancy can help your body prepare for a natural birth. They’re also a fantastic way to stimulate labour naturally while still being on alert for the challenges of childbirth. So, don’t hesitate to stay fit and watch your child’s birthing process go smoothly!
ACOG Also Read: How to Induce Labour Exercises During Pregnancy: A Guide to Pregnancy.
Take A Walk!
Consider walking as a warm-up; a short walk has been shown to speed up labors. Walking may seem low-impact, but it promotes uterine contraction, which is especially helpful for mothers who haven’t been so active during their pregnancy. It will certainly help your cervix dilate, while simultaneously helping your baby’s fall further into your pelvis, or it will certainly be relaxing for your mind and body.