28. Licorice – Try to get the natural kind – it contains more licorice and usually less sugar. Like castor oil, some people claim that the slightly laxative effect can cause cramps in the bowel which lead to contractions.
29. Mandarin oil on heels – Or in a bath. A useful way to try and get things started, accompanied by a beautiful smell and some relaxation.
30. Massage – Find a massage therapist qualified to work with pregnant women. Many will know various points to massage to induce labor. This is why massage is not recommended during the early stages of pregnancy by an unqualified masseur.
32. Nipple stimulation – Needs to be done for approx an hour at a time. One recommendation is to use a wet washcloth for increased stimulation. Alternatively, try either a breast pump or borrowing a friend’s newborn baby (although you might want to be close friends!) For those “shocked” at this idea, remember that till just a few decades ago, wet nursing was a common and normal practice. Read more.
33. Olive Oil – Olive oil has a similar laxative effect to castor oil. Please do your research before taking any natural laxative to induce labor.
34. Oregano – Suitable as a tea or fresh in your cooking.
35. Orgasm – Orgasms cause contractions which is part of what feels so good. That’s why many women enjoy orgasms more during pregnancy! You can try this alone or with a partner… whatever you’re comfortable with.
36. Pineapple – Best taken fresh and raw. Statistically speaking, the chemicals which pineapple contain (bromelain ), which are said to start labor aren’t very high. So that means about 7 pineapples should put you into labor!
37. Quinine – Can aid the release of oxytocin. Dosage should be check with a professional first.
38. Raspberry leaf – Taken either as a tea or pill. Start at about 34 weeks – opinion is divided as to whether it will start labor, but it definitely strengthens the uterus, leading to a (hopefully) shorter labor, because each contraction can achieve more. Drinking large amounts can also increase contractions.
39. Relaxation excercises – Try some relaxing music and just lie back or even join a meditation class.
40. Sperm – If you feel up to sex, this is a good start towards getting ready for labor. The sperm helps soften and dilate the cervix.
41. Spicy food – A very well known labor starter! The reason it works may be because of the upset it causes to the digestive system which then upsets the uterus. Not highly recommended.
42. Squats – Doing a few of these each day often helps to move the baby down and into position.
43. Squaw Vine – Old remedy. Not sure how well it works.
44. Stretch and sweep of membranes – Your midwife or doctor can perform this simple procedure. A finger is inserted into the cervix and a gentle ‘sweep’ of the finger slightly separates the uterus wall and amniotic sac, sometimes leading to labor within hours or days. Some women say it’s an easy, painless procedure, others claim it can be very painful. How well it works can also depend on if you are very far dilated or not. Some women can have it done up to 5 times before seeing results.1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5