Going into labor naturally? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 02:31 PM - Thread Starter
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From what I've read it is now thought that something in the baby's brain actually triggers labor (or signifies to the mother's body/brain that labor may or needs to commence soon).

But I'm wondering about other factors. Mostly - stress. I've heard that possibly a large reason many women go into labor at night is because they are more relaxed, older kids in bed - can focus on labor and birth.

I've gone almost to 42 weeks with both my previous pregnancies and am sort of hoping to go a little sooner this time - but no inductions here .

I've also heard of some women sort of "thinking" about being in labor and going into labor. ??

Heard things like Red Raspberry Leaf Tea can help labor start (on average) earlier. But of course that didn't help me last time (but I still feel was beneficial to take - starting labor wasn't the purpose I took it for).

Anyways - I'm a little stressed of late. Hoping that I can get my stress level down and maybe that will help in not hindering labor from starting when baby is ready.

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#2 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 03:28 PM
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Interesting. I've always gone into labor in the morning, with contractions progressing throughout the day. Mine were all born between 8 pm and 11 pm. I wonder why??

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#3 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 03:37 PM
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My labor with one started in the evening and my labor with the other started early in the morning. #2 was born before #1 even woke up.

I went over with #2 (after having #1 before 40 weeks) so I know how you're feeling. Hang in there and remember that no one stays pregnant forever, you'll be holding your little one soon.

Do update us here when you get a chance!

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#4 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 04:07 PM
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I too have heard that extreme stress can inhibit the onset of labor. I remember reading, I think here on MDC, of someone not going into labor until her MIL was out of the house!

I went to 41W 4D. Even though that's well within the realm of 'average' for a FTM, I felt sooo late because I was convinced I wouldn't even make it to 40W (I know, I know, stupid of me!)

I remember how tough that time was - dreading the thought of induction, not even having any BH Ctrx & fearing my uterus didn't even work! It was awful.

Well, when I emailed my doula about that stress, she made a comment about, "try to relax, stress can inhibit labor."

I sorta took that to sorta mean, "Meg, it's kinda your fault you're not in labor, so you need to chill to make it happen."

Um, yeah, not a good message to have given me at that point in time!

While I do not disagree with the theory that exreme stress can inhibit the onset of labor, I vehemently disagree with the assertion that those of us who are stressed/frustrated because we are not YET in labor are further delaying labor because of that stress.

So there! Stop feeling guilty!
Seriously though, the wait is hard enough, you don't need to beat yourself up over the fact that you're frustrated.

As I wrote on a thread, I think "fearing labor won't start" I actually went to a shrink because I was so upset over this. She said, "Is there any way you can be more gentle with yourself?" That really resonated with me. Yeah - the wait is hard enough, don't beat yourself up over the fact that the wait is stressing you - i.e. don't feel stressed over the fact that you are stressed! I really don't think the mechanisms that start labor are that sensitive.
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#5 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 04:17 PM
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In my experience, labor started only after I had given up all hope of ever giving birth and resigned myself to being pregnant forever. But you can't fake it, you have to actually get that desperate.

All joking aside, I think stress can have an impact on when you start your labor, but it's not going to prevent it altogether. One of the most generally stressed-out women I know has gone into labor naturally with each of her many children...if the "no stress = no labor" rule were true, she would still be pregnant with the first one, who is now 15.

Three out of five of my labors started at the same time...eerily, it was about 4:45am every single time, give or take 5 minutes. One of my labors technically started with a slow amniotic fluid leak on a Monday, followed by acupuncture/herbal laxatives/walking around for ages/whatever other natural induction techniques my mw suggested until I woke up to a real live contraction at about 3am Thursday morning. I had puttery contractions before that but the one that stopped me in my tracks was early in the morning.

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#6 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 04:22 PM
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I think stress is a factor. I also loved Ina May's 'sphincter law' chapter (women going BACKWARDS in labor when confronted with stress). I don't think it will keep you pregnant forever though.

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DS born Dec 2010 Pregnant with #2, having another !
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#7 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 04:46 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm more leaning towards the idea of trying to help my husband understand that, with two toddlers, a messy house, and all the aches and pains of end of pregnancy - I feel a bit overloaded and stressed right now.

He's been coming home hoping I'm going to have the baby soon (because then he'll be off work, home with us). While I understand and am SO glad he gets to be with us during this special time to bond with us as we grow as a family - I feel like there's even more pressure to have the baby - yet he's not helping me out much with the stress factor. I think if he "REALLY" wanted me to have this baby he'd be more tentative to my "end of pregnancy needs" (put your feet up, let me help you out with this or that - don't get me wrong - he sure does help - but doesn't realize I need help with just about EVERYTHING right now! - It's hard to breathe, bend over, walk, have patience with the kids, etc.)

I was hoping someone would chime in with, - "oh yes - you need to be relaxing right now and taking it easy and make sure someone in your home is helping you".

This is the toughest pregnancy I've been through - mostly because it takes SO MUCH energy to look after/clean up after these two little ones I am blessed to have. But I really feel I need HELP right now - at least 'til a few weeks after baby comes.

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#8 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 05:13 PM
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I definately think stress is a factor. I've even heard of women going backwards in dilation due to stress. Giving birth makes you "vulnerable to predators" so if you're stressed, the body won't want to send you into labour.

Also, I heard it was the baby's lungs that signal labour. When they are mature a substance is produced that makes it start? But I guess that's controlled by teh brain, so yeah.

Mom to angel baby, grew wings at 5 weeks in May '07, William, born Dec '08, and another angel who grew wings at 8w4d (lost at 11w) in Oct '10. Rachel born Feb 2012, Another angel Lost Sept '13. New bean due Nov '14!
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#9 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 06:23 PM
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Hmmmm....I think that stress caused me to start my labor a little earlier than my body was truly ready & before my baby was optimally positioned. And then stress during labor slowed things down and maybe even caused me to "go backward" though I'll probably never really know for sure.

It seems like stress probably has some relationship to the start of labor, but perhaps that varies from person to person and depends on the type of stress.

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#10 of 11 Old 07-29-2010, 06:26 PM
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You need to take it easy and make sure someone is helping you!

Seriously, they just don't get it. I am in the privileged position of having my due date smack bang in the middle of my teacher husband's summer vacation and I can't WAIT having him at my beck and call (school's out tomorrow!). The house and garden are a mess, there is laundry all over the place, there is still a huge to-do list and he just does not get that when I ask him to do something it is something I would normally do myself right that instant and it stresses me hugely knowing that I will have to ask gain and ask again and probably ask again the following day.
and he's already sent out emails for summer workers for a building project he's wanting to start over the summer - I told him ANYTHING needs to be droppable at a minute's notice and the to do list will HAVE to be done. So no pouring concrete...
I probably had a stress-related premature birth last time; this time I feel like I could not go into labour with the house such a mess and so much stuff not done yet.
Can you ask him to do a big clean-up over the weekend, holding out the carrot that the strong satisfaction of your nesting instinct might trigger labour?

MeDH DS1 10/06 DD 08/10 DS2 10/12with SB and
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#11 of 11 Old 07-30-2010, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by nova22 View Post
In my experience, labor started only after I had given up all hope of ever giving birth and resigned myself to being pregnant forever. But you can't fake it, you have to actually get that desperate.

This has been my experience as well.
Hoping this lo breaks the trend .

Meghan : Kayla~ 10/19/04 Jack~ 5/27/07
Evelyn~ 10/9/10

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