Your estimated due date has come and gone. You are approximately 100 months pregnant...or at least it feels that way! You are probably wondering what you can do to encourage your baby to make an appearance. Keep in mind that any attempt at coaxing baby out is still an intervention. You need to speak with your care provider to discuss the benefits and risks of any induction method, whether natural or otherwise
A quick Google search will yield all kinds of ideas. Suggestions range from eating spicy foods to using essential oils to having sex. Most of these suggestions are based on anecdotal research but there are some methods that have scientific street cred.
1. Having Sex
There have been a few trials to study whether or not having sex helps women go into labor. Some of these trials have yielded mixed results. Our friends over at Evidence Based Birth have a great video about this. They conclude that "Researchers think there’s three ways that sex could possibly affect natural labor induction. The prostaglandins in the semen, orgasm that stimulates uterus activity, and the increase in natural oxytocin from sexual activity." Regardless of efficacy, having sex is a great way to relax and connect with your partner in those final days before the birth of your baby.
2. See Number 1
We know. It's a short list. While things like acupuncture, acupressure, exercise, and chiropractic care are all usually things mentioned as things to do to possibly get labor going, there is little scientific research currently out there that supports a correlation between doing these activities and getting labor started.
The truth is, in low-risk situations, your baby will ultimately decide his or her birthday. The GOOD news is that your baby WILL eventually be born. In the meantime, do things to distract yourself from the wait. Stay off social media, turn off your phone, and invest in some self-care. Go see a movie, get a mani/pedi or massage, go on a date with your partner, lose yourself in a good book, etc. Some people enjoy working on a DIY project for the baby's nursery. Above all, relax, breathe, and know that baby will meet you soon.