What Can I Do to Make Myself Go Into Labor?

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
What can I do to make myself go in to labor? I have family coming from across country and I want to give birth while they are here.

What are some safe things I can do to make me go in to labor? I have heard of walking, but is there anything else?

ANSWER

Intercourse and nipple stimulation are also good. But the biggest thing you can do is to relax and enjoy your company. Anything that stresses you or makes you anxious or worried causes you to make adrenaline, which stops labor (you wouldn't want to be having a baby when you were being attacked by a tiger, right? so your body stops it). You will definitely have your baby by two weeks past your due date (which is when they should come, because that is when you will really need them so they can help you with the baby) and that is the date you should focus on. Before that, just have fun!!!

--Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

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Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.