Hilarious "Natural" Induction Methods

By 41 weeks pregnant, I had heard more than my fair share of "helpful" hints and tricks from well-intentioned loved ones for bumping baby out a bit earlier. I was mildly entertained by the whole thing and thought I pass the wisdom along to you. ;)

Some of the ideas sound a lot like common sense, while others are downright stupid to attempt without medical supervision. I'll let you be the judge of which is which.

Disclaimer: I am by NO means recommending any of these. Chat with your doctor if you're desperate for some relief. I'm not a doctor and suspect that several of these methods might even be highly dangerous. This list is meant to be a fun read.

I tried to find "natural" methods from both American and French culture and combine them in a list here, adding as I go. Did I try all of them? Absolutely not.

Please feel free to add the crazy stuff you've heard down in the comments below!

1. Special Cuddles - Pretty much every doctor recommends this to their impatient patients. Are there any studies proving that it works? Not so much - the results are pretty mixed, but it helps keep you busy and calms you down.

2. Pineapples - In theory, this is my favorite, but apparently you have to eat 6-7 whole raw pineapples for it to be effective. Ouch. They were on sale at the end of my pregnancy, so I was constantly snacking on them just in case! ;)

3. Bumpy Car Rides - This sent me into very painful false labor that lasted about 7 hours with contractions coming every 2-3 minutes. It was awful, but still no bébé.

4. Essential Oils - I've actually been told to avoid Essential Oils during pregnancy, so this one scares me. But if you're curious, Clary Sage is the one that gets the most buzz.

5. Clove Tea - This suggestion came from a French source, but doesn't sound terrible. I might end up trying it for curiosity's sake. Tried it. Didn't work for me...

6. A Shot of Balsamic Vinegar - This would just make me vomit.

7. Black and Blue Cohosh Tea - A chemical is a chemical whether it's "natural" or synthetic. Please do your research before trying anything. There appear to be studies backing up the danger of these two for the baby, so make sure your well informed!

8. Red Raspberry Leaf Tea - No it doesn't taste like Raspberries. It tastes like leaves and it takes a special palette to truly be able to appreciate that. It does, however, strengthen your uterus (in theory).

9. Homeopathics - I don't believe that these are more than sugar pills, but took them daily from 37 weeks onwards to help "prepare the cervix". They were prescribed by my midwife, I get the prescription filled in a legit pharmacy, and the French government covers the cost. Certainly not how things would be done in the states, but I figure they're harmless and free. Why not?

10. Evening Primrose Oil - There are many wives tales and multiple methods for inserting this correctly. Talk with your doctor.

11. Yoga Labor Induction Dance - This is really just good exercise either way and somewhat hilarious. It mostly just made me laugh. There's a very long thread on Babycenter describing how to do it and comparing results. I will definitely being doing this one again, just to get up and move while laughing!

12. Castor Oil - This works by making you so physically ill (it's a laxative) that your uterus starts involuntarily contracting, if you take it in a large enough dose to induce labor. People have really mixed results with this and you stand of high risk of becoming severely dehydrated.

13. Walking - Ok. This suggestion just seems silly. Who voluntarilly puts themselves on bed rest during the last few weeks of pregnancy? I'm guessing almost no one. Obviously, you're going to be walking. If this one actually gave you more than Braxton Hicks, it wouldn't be recommended before 37 weeks. I think doctors recommend this to keep you busy in a safe way up until the end. But if you're not already in labor, chances are slim that a gentle walk is going to set you off.


What crazy methods have you ladies heard of? Did anyone of them work for you?


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