There are so many ways you hear about to induce labor naturally. I've tried them all. There was one method I tried with my second and 12 hours later she was here!!
Like I said, there are a ton of ways that are recommended to naturally induce labor! YES, I tried pretty much all of these to naturally induce my labor. But when I went in at 40 weeks and my doctor said my baby was turned and not engaged, I immediately went to the miles circuit and spinning babies to get her into place and IT WORKED! And I went into labor that night.
No clear indicators
I will tell you, no matter how many videos you watch, articles you read, advice you get, there is nothing definitive that is proven to make you go into labor. And that is SO frustrating! Plus, there's no real good indicator of if you're close to going into labor.
My midwife and I had this conversation…with all of the advances in technology and medicine, there is nothing that can tell you if you're close to labor. Dilation isn't even a clear indicator. I know people that were sitting at 3 cm dilated for THREE WEEKS. The only thing that is a good indicator is your water breaking. IF that happens, it's typically within 24 hours to prevent an infection. But your water might never break. Or, you might be like me and it will break 5 minutes before you have your baby. And mucus plug…I lost might about 10 hours before both times, but I had a friend who lost hers weeks before.
AND you can just start to think that everything is an indicator..I'm tired today, does that mean I'm going into labor? I'm really hungry, is that a sign?
Trying to decide if your belly has dropped, if losing your mucus plug means you're close, if you're dilated enough, and the other million things that could mean you're close will drive you crazy. Moral of the story…there's no clear indicators so don't focus on that. And stop googling.
Things I tried
Before the miles circuit, which is what ultimately worked, I tried a load of other things that *may* have helped. And honestly, whether they helped or not, it was worth a shot. Because let's be real, when you're ready to get that baby out…you're READY!
- Eating dates – with my first I started eating dates at 37 weeks which is supposed to “ripen” the cervix.
- Diffusing clary sage – not even sure exactly what this is supposed to do but apparently it can help
- Drinking red raspberry tea – this is supposed to be good for your uterus and uterine health
- Sex – you often hear sex is supposed to help bring the baby sooner, but what I found out is that it is actually the semen, which is supposed to ripen the cervix as well
- Curb walking – with my first, I was super ready to get the show on the road. I curb walked which is exactly what it sounds like…one foot on the sidewalk, one foot up on the curb. It's suppose to move your pelvis so your baby can engage
- Spicy foods – I tried some Chipotle and other spicy foods. That's apparently supposed to help too
Recipe for success
Again, not sure if any of that helped, but it certainly didn't hurt. With my second, I'm convinced the miles circut, spinning babies, and hypnobabies was the recipe for success.
I did a spinning babies class (the only baby class I took) which taught me a lot about the ideal position for the baby to be in. Highly recommend.
Okay the Miles Circuit. I think this was the ticket. A friend of mine said her doula swears by the Miles Circuit. She said to make it work, you need to do the full 1.5 hrs, but people never do it all the way through. Game on.
While the babysitter was with my toddler, I sat upstairs in 3 stretches for 30 minutes each. My babe was not engaging in my pelvis so what this circuit does is open things up and try to get your baby in position.
And I have SUCH good things to say about hypnobabies. I have a ton of videos about this on my YouTube channel, but seriously this had me SO mentally prepared for labor, both times. This is a game changer for the mental game to help baby come out.
Overall, my advice to induce labor naturally is this: eat the dates, drink red raspberry tea, sex (if you're feeling up to it), you can try nipple stimulation. And the MILE CIRCUIT. Give that a go! See if that works for you. I mean who knows, but I really do think it worked for me.
If you're reading this, you're likely super close to the end of your pregnancy. So first, CONGRATULATIONS! It's like the weirdest time right? Because you're like wow it's close to the biggest day of my life but I have no idea when it is. But I hope this has been interesting and helpful for you and that your baby comes soon!