Taking Castor Oil to Induce Labor? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 06:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Have any of you done this and with what kind of results? Any regrets?

I am nine months pregnant and a few people have suggested that I do this.. just curious if it really works!
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#2 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 06:42 PM
 
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Why would you want to jumpstart Nature??? Ignore their advice.

Your body will know when it is ready to start labor, it doesn't need any help!

Patience, patience, patience.........
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#3 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 08:16 PM
 
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I've just heard that it will give you horrible cramps and diarrhea and then labor will start when your baby is good and ready anyway. No need to try and rush labor, it will happen when it's time.

Malinda, partner to Ryan, Mama to Super-Holden (Nov 2006) and my new little bundle, Declan (Feb 2010)
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#4 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 08:30 PM
 
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yep, cramps and diarrhea, that's what my friend got from it, no start of labor either. Another vote for wait till the baby is ready, you could always have lots of sex!
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#5 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 08:34 PM
 
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I would not even consider it without serious medical reason for induction.

-Angela
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#6 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 08:38 PM
 
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We tried it. It had been 24 hours since my water broke and we were trying for a home birth.

We ended up having to go to the hospital anyways and the castor oil just helped in making me more uncomfortable then I already was. I'll leave some of the details out, I wouldn't do it again.
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#7 of 29 Old 02-23-2008, 09:45 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Jwebbal View Post
Another vote for wait till the baby is ready, you could always have lots of sex!
Yup, worked for us, but not on purpose with the second one no doing the deed 1 month from due date!
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#8 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 01:31 AM
 
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Yes I did it twice when I was facing other far more invasive things if thigns didnt get moving.. I was 2 weeks overdue both times though. The first time it gave me wicked diarrhea and lots of contractions but they petered out.
The 2nd time I vomited 6 times, immediately. I really think my body remembered what it was and wanted it the he!! out.
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#9 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 01:40 AM
 
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We tried sex and it didn't seem help me, but what really did it was red raspberry leaf tea (up to a quart a day says my OB). I drank one cup on Thursday, two on Friday and went into labor early Saturday morning.

BTW the tea is also great for toning the uterus during pregnancy.

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#10 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 01:45 AM
 
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I did a version of the castor oil "induction" with DS3 because I was knocking on 42 weeks and wanted to keep the homebirth option open and angsted over the decision.

I wouldn't do straight castor oil. My mix had a very small amount of castor oil combined with a protein (almond cream), lemon verbena, apricot juice, and champagne, similar to the method mentioned on the GentleBirth archives. Supposedly it originates with German midwives. It does not result in the horrid cramping/diarrhea/vomiting that larger doses of straight CO causes. The protein binds the CO so that it travels through the intestines more slowly and produces a slow release of your own prostaglandins.

This type of method only works if your body is ready for labor and I would only help nature along if the alternative is truly unacceptable to you or would pose greater risks to your health and the baby's health.

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#11 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 02:06 AM
 
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i induced with castor oil 4 days before my due date and it worked. we were otherwise going to be induced at the hospital because we had very low fluid. i wanted to be able to have a water birth. well..... we didnt get the water birth, but that had nothing to do with castor oil.

so.... it worked exactly like we hoped, but it was definitely gross. i vomited the moment it touched my lips. it was VERYYYYYY hard to even get it down. i mixed it with orange juice and vanilla ice cream and it was still the most vile and disgusting thing i ever could have imagined.

blah blah blah.... it worked.
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#12 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 02:55 AM
 
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I say nature knows what is going on trust it, trust your body trust your baby, you will poop enough during labor why would you bring on more poo? I have never tried it but with my first I got anxious and tried black cohosh and my labor started but was horrible erratic and ended in c-section from home birth to hospital bad times, trust your body mama

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#13 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 03:03 AM
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I never tried castor oil, but I have used Evening Primrose Oil, cohosh, and Red Raspberry Leaf tea. Right now I am doing EPO and RLT.

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#14 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 10:48 AM
 
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I tried it with my first when I got close to 41 weeks. It tasted disgusting and didn't do anything in terms of starting labor. I wouldn't use it again.
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#15 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 10:54 AM
 
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Honestly I dont think anything really works unless your body is ready for it. Because I have done it ALL and none of it worked for me.
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#16 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 02:20 PM
 
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i wonder the same thing...i have a friend who took castor oil while she was already showing signs of an impending labor and it definately kicked started her labor. she said she had to constantly go to the bathroom to empty her bowels and the contractions were very intense. the entire labor all she felt was the need to empty her bowels...

i hear more stories of it causing more intense labor than it not...i will definately try other natural inducing methods (accupressure, sex, walking, etc.) if medically necessary before attempting castor oil.
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#17 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 02:53 PM
 
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I took castor oil after 41 weeks, and still just ended up with diarrhea :P

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#18 of 29 Old 02-24-2008, 03:02 PM
 
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i took it at 42 weeks with my ds. my midwife put TONS of pressure on me to do it. i had already tried acupuncture, acupressure and a few other things to start labor but got nothing more than some contractions.

i basically had crazy intense diarrea, while having contractions, for about an hour, then a fast labor and birth. then for the next 3 days i woke up in the middle of the night with crazy diarrea. not really great when you are trying to snuggle up next to your newborn in bed, if you ask me. i really felt like i had no other options at the time. i could have switched midwives, but that sounded really bad to me at the time. it was such a struggle.

looking back, i don't really regret anything, it's just the way it happened to me. i am 100% positive that i will not do it again, though. my midwife with this pregnancy has assured me she's not even going to suggest it and that i am free to wait until my baby comes. i feel really good about that.
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#19 of 29 Old 02-25-2008, 04:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Kiddoson View Post
Yup, worked for us, but not on purpose with the second one no doing the deed 1 month from due date!
How nice. We both wanted nothing to do with sex pretty much the entire time I was pregnant.
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#20 of 29 Old 02-25-2008, 05:04 AM
 
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Honestly I dont think anything really works unless your body is ready for it. Because I have done it ALL and none of it worked for me.
Yeah, totally this........
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#21 of 29 Old 02-25-2008, 12:22 PM
 
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My mil drank castor oil when she was overdue and she said all it did is flush her system thoroughly but she did not start labor from it. If I am faced with it this pregnancy I plan on using Evening primrose and drinking RRL tea (which is what I did last time). My feeling is that you shouldn't try to rush into something like labor. Castor oil seems like a very harsh alternative to everything else you could do!

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#22 of 29 Old 02-25-2008, 12:30 PM
 
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I did it and it worked.

I was a week over my due date. I took it with peanut butter at around 9 AM. By 9PM, I was having contractions.

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#23 of 29 Old 02-26-2008, 11:15 AM
 
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YUCK...My labor was stalled because of scar tissue on my cervix, so when I took castor oil all it did was seriously clear out my system, so again I say YUCK!!!
I drank quite a bit of cumin seed tea w/ #2 (some old mw remedy I read about) Not sure if she came out because of the tea or if she wsa just ready. Funny thing is that she was cumin scented
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#24 of 29 Old 02-26-2008, 11:26 AM
 
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I used it 4 times between 42 and 43 weeks. It did not work for me, but my system was well-cleaned out for labor. I also tried blue and black cohosh (didn't work), EPO, nipple stim, sex, RRL tea, etc. etc.

Bottom line, don't get too anxious/overexcited to meet your LO. I only did all of these things on the advice of my midwife.
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#25 of 29 Old 02-26-2008, 11:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *Robin* View Post
We tried sex and it didn't seem help me, but what really did it was red raspberry leaf tea (up to a quart a day says my OB). I drank one cup on Thursday, two on Friday and went into labor early Saturday morning.

BTW the tea is also great for toning the uterus during pregnancy.
With my last pregnancy, I drank about a quart a day of raspberry leaf, combined with chamomile and peppermint (it was summertime, and that was the only cold drink I wanted in the last trimester). The end result was not a speeded-up labor (the opposite at 105 hours, actually), and one of the issues was a super-thick amniotic sac. The MWs ended up breaking my water after 4.5 days of labor, as a last resort before the hospital, and they could barely get the amnihook to break the sac. It was so thickened they were able to hold the placenta up by the sac once she was born. I was told they think I actually had too MUCH raspberry leaf tea.

(On a side note, that's not all that stalled the labor. It also does not help start labor unless your body is ready for it in the first place. But you might want to watch how MUCH of that uterus-toning tea you take in. This time, moderation is my keyword.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MommytoTwo View Post
Honestly I dont think anything really works unless your body is ready for it. Because I have done it ALL and none of it worked for me.
**EXACTLY.** :

I did castor oil more than once, EPO, black and blue cohosh, Master Gland every 2 hours for three straight days, super-concentrated raspberry leaf tea, walking about 200 miles around my neighborhood... the whole nine yards. The baby wanted to come, but my body didn't want the labor. I'd have intense contractions - and then they'd slow down to 1-2 an hour. I was dilating but at an excrutiatingly slow pace.

Bottom line is, castor oil doesn't physically harm the baby (though I can't speak for the psychological harm to the mother - that stuff is VILE) and will clean your bowels out probably better than they've ever been, but if labor is not already impending, that is not going to bring it on.

Good luck to you, mama and best wishes.

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#26 of 29 Old 03-05-2008, 12:14 PM
 
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I took CO in a smoothie when I was a week overdue with my second ds and the Kaiser midwives were talking induction and C-section. I took it around 11 p.m. and within a few hours I had diarrhea, my water broke, and I had a *very* fast labor (an hour and a half from first contraction to birth).

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#27 of 29 Old 03-06-2008, 10:57 AM
 
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I was 11 days late and wanted to wait until 2 wks 'till I would restort to the castor oil! Day 9 my midwife recommended and I tried a blue cohash tincture, 15 drops under the tongue every 15 minutes for 3hours. Nothing happened with contractions but I did wake up the next day with my "bloody show"! That day I took the homepathic version of Blue cohash which is "Caulophyllum", I took 5 every 15 minutes for 3 hours. Nothing happened that night, but i finished off the bottle the next morning and my contractions started late afternoon! Good Luck!
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#28 of 29 Old 03-06-2008, 11:07 AM
 
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I wouldn't do it unless there were a good medical reason to do some (and not just being "late" according to average due date calculations). From what I've read, it seems to me that even these "natural" induction methods bring risks with them, such as starting labor before the baby is totally ready and leading to difficult positioning for labor.

I know practitioners can put quite a bit of pressure on pregnant mamas to give birth by a certain date, some of it for legal reasons. I think a good answer would be to find a caregiver who is more trusting of birth, although I know this can be tough. Often DEMs are more willing to go "postdates" than CNMs or OBs.
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#29 of 29 Old 03-06-2008, 08:16 PM
 
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My midwife said that castor oil can affect the baby and not just you, as in, more meconium in the amniotic fluid than you would have if you didn't use it. Just something to think about.

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