‘Natural’ methods of labour induction – do they work?

When we first fell pregnant and I heard stories about people wanting to induce their labour because ‘they’d had enough’… I thought they were crazy. What could be better than being heavily pregnant, ripe with the knowledge that soon you would be bringing a new life into the world?

Now with two days to go, I would be lying if I said I hadn’t considered using ‘natural’ methods to bring on labour. I dream of a time when I could tie my own shoes, do my own pedicure, sit through a whole movie without needing to pee (or a whole advert for that matter), and let’s not even mention the fact that pregnant women could probably hasten the decreased reliance of the world on fossil fuels. (If I have to explain what that means, you’ve never been, or have never had a partner who’s been, pregnant).

(Don’t worry, I know – the baby will come out when he’s ready) but I’m still curious as to whether there is any evidence to support ‘natural’ methods of labour induction…

The main forms of ‘natural methods of labour induction’ that are mentioned most frequently¬†include: sex, acupuncture/ acupressure, oils (eg. evening primrose oil), nipple stimulation, castor oil,¬†and spicy foods/ curry. I know there are more out there, but these seem to be the main ones.

So for our next couple of posts, let’s see which of these (if any) are ‘evidence-based’…

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