by Guest Blogger Baby Byrd Doula
Many women who are past their due date become very anxious to have their babies and understandably so. The sleepless nights, swelling, uncomfortable feeling, and just plain wanting to meet their babies really motivates some women to try to induce their labor naturally. If you are "over-due" then you've probably tired everything. Some common techniques to get your labor rolling are walking, nipple stimulation, caster oil, evening primrose oil, sex, eating pineapples, and many many other things. One thing that worked for two of my clients, maybe coincidentally, was eating spicy food. The idea behind spicy food is that is gently irritates your bowels (like castor oil) which may cause uterine contractions since the bowels and reproductive organs are located close together in the body.
This is what happened to a client-friend of mine. She was overdue by about a week and I thought it would be nice to have her and her husband over before she had her baby. It was one last opportunity for us to eat together while they were still "baby-free". As sort of a joke we ordered spicy Thai food. I knew that there is sometimes a correlation between spicy food and starting labor. So we enjoyed each other's company and the food and we parted the night around 8pm with a low expectation that labor would start since she had no other signs that labor was imminent.
I was awoken by my phone a 11pm. Her water had broken and her contractions had started. I couldn't believe that it worked! We were so excited that she was in labor. Later that day she delivered a healthy baby. We joked later about the fact that the spicy food worked. Who knows if it really did, but either way we were grateful for the birth of her baby!
Later she said that that she also had a really good cry right before her water broke. Sometimes just an emotional surrender will trigger labor to start. It is almost as if you give in to your body and accept what is about to happen.
So what is my advice for inducing labor naturally? Spicy food and a good cry! But ultimately it is up to your body and your baby. So if you are past your due date, there is hope. I promise you won't be pregnant forever!