I used some EPO at the end of my last pg vaginally and orally in hopes of ripening my cervix (it didn't work), but I don't think I started using it until 39 weeks. Is it something I should be starting now at 37 wks? Or is it best to wait? To those who have used it, did you do it vaginally, orally, or both? And how much did you take at a time?
As for black cohosh and red raspberry leaf, should those be reserved for 40+ weeks? I remember a thread ( I think on the June BB) about RRL and people taking it early on. I have looked for it in the tea and vitamin sections of a few stores and have not seen it. Do you have to go to an herb shop? The EPO and cohosh are everywhere--saw both at Target today.
I've taken EPO with my last 3 births. I started at 37 weeks taking 1 orally & 1 vaginally. I would pop the capsule before inserting it so that it would absorb quicker & seemed to make the snail trail slightly less annoying. Once I hit 38 weeks I increased it to 2 orally and 1 vaginally.
I've never taken cohosh's but generally, yes, it should be kept until your at your edd although I know some who begin in their 38th/39th week. What form are you wanting to take the RRL in? Tincture or Tea? I drink RRLT throughout my entire pregnancy and then drink a quart of super strong tea in early labor. I buy loose leaf tea & yes I go to my local herb shop, but you can pick up bagged tea at most large chain grocery stores & possibly even smaller local stores, I guess it depends on your area. If your wanting the tincture I would imagine most herbal/natural health stores would carry it.
I don't know about EPO or black cohosh. I was thinking about trying EPO but I haven't yet. I do drink RRL tea though. I started pretty much as soon as my morning sickness cleared up (around 20 weeks). I get mine at a local herb shop (it's a pregnancy tea blend with RRL, Alfalfa, Nettles and Lemon balm). I know Yogi teas and Republic of Tea make pregnancy teas as well, but it's a bit more expensive to do it that way.
I'm going past a New Seasons tomorrow for my massage and final doula mtg, so I'll look there first for the RRL. I know blue and black cohosh were used in the old days to terminate an early pg or expel a m/c, so I figured it worked kinda like misoprostal. I'll wait until I am actually "late" to go that route. I'll get the EPO either today or tomorrow.
The thing is that EPO and Red Raspberry Leaf tea are NOT going to induce labour. They create favourable conditions for labour. EPO causes cervical softening (ripening) but not contractions. RRL tea tones the uterine muscle so that when contrax do kick in, they are more effective than if you hadn't taken the EPO. Neither will cause contractions and can be taken well before your EDD. RRL tea can be drunk for an entire pregnancy safely and EPO can be started anytime after 36 weeks, both orally and vaginally.
Blue and Black Cohosh are oxytocic herbs and WILL cause contractions. I took them when I hit 42 weeks with my first baby. They did cause contractions, but my son was also born with severe meconium aspiration. I've read some studies recently that link the cohoshes with meconium staining...although in my case it's hard to discern if it was because of my being postdates or using the cohoshes.
Thanks Emily---That is what I thought, but I often don't trust myself to be correct...lol. I started EPO last night. Just one 500mg vaginally. I may do one orally today. I am not looking to induce myself at this point--just help "ripen" up. The cervix was my big stumbling block last time. I also got the red raspberry tea but felt so nauseous last night that I didn't drink it.
You can take 3000mg daily! Starting at 36 weeks I take two 500mg capsules morning and 2 capsules at night..as well as inserting one vaginally morning and night. Now, I don't have my babies until well after 40 weeks, but I definately feel that it helps soften stuff up...I've always been almost completely effaced long before labour kicks in. HTH!