Here at Trinity HQ we are waiting with baited breath with for the arrival of royal baby number two. The Duchess of Cambridge was due to give birth last Thursday and as she approaches being a week overdue, we wanted to find out a bit more about inducing labour. We spoke to one of our clients, director and fertility expert at Harley Street Fertility Clinic, Dr Geetha Venkat, about some of the things Kate could do to ‘help things along’:
Eating healthy with lots of fresh fruits can be useful for inducing labour as they produce oxytocin, which is a natural hormone to bring on contractions. Fresh pineapples and dates are said to be two of the best but eating a rounded and nutritional diet will always help.
The ‘fun’ way
There is medical proof that having sexual intercourse with your partner can help to induce the labour. There are hormones in the male semen called prostaglandins, which can be transferred to the woman’s cervix. These prostaglandins can help to dilate and soften the cervix. This is a fun way to try and induce labour but it isn’t fool proof, and some women may find it too uncomfortable in the later stages of their pregnancy.
Staying fit and active
Going for walks and doing light exercise is not just good for your health but can also help to induce labour. Exercise and activity can stimulate the uterus to contract and help prepare it for giving birth. Anything that can lightly increase abdominal pressure and increase the muscle contraction, possibly even blowing up balloons, could help.
‘Curry on contracting’
Eating a hot curry has been an age-old method that many women have sworn by when trying to induce labour. The spice can stimulate the bowel muscles and, in turn, make the uterus muscles contract. Although, don’t force yourself to eat really spicy curries such as vindaloo, as this could upset your bowels and make the women feel more discomfort.
Herbal and fruit tea
Raspberry leaf tea is another great way to improve the chances of inducing labour. It is rich in vitamins, minerals and tannins – all which can help open up the cervix and speed up labour. This can also enrich breast milk and some women are given it to reduce inflammation after birth.
The usual period for gestation is 40/41 weeks and then after that the baby becomes overdue. Doctors will normally wait until a baby is one week overdue before stepping in to help with inducing labour. After one week, the placenta function can start to go down, which can have implications for the unborn child and the mother.
We would love to hear your stories about inducing labour, so feel free to get in touch. In the meantime, everyone here is wishing Kate and William all the best and our money is on it being a boy!