Here's my story: I am almost 36 weeks along and have a fairly severe case of preeclampsia. My doctor is going to induce me at 37 weeks. (As it is safer for both the baby and me to have him out instead of in.) HOWEVER he is a bit concerned that I have not dilated on my own and that, if we do an induction, since I have not dilated and my cervix is not "ripe" that the induction won't work right and I will end up needing a C-section.
I have been having regular, intense contractions for three days now. My doctor said they are the real thing - not Braxton Hicks, but that they're not causing me to ripen or dilate, for some reason. Also the baby's head is very low.
I'm wondering if you know of natural ways to soften the cervix and cause dilation. I don't need things that bring on contractions, as I am already having those. I just need to get my cervix soft and ready! I don't want to be induced if I'm not ready, only to end up needing a C-section.
The ways that I have heard so far are sex, nipple stimulation, red raspberry tea and evening primrose oil tablets. My husband and I have tried all of these. I just started the raspberry tea and evening primrose oil last night.
Do you have any other suggestions? And know how long they take to normally get the cervix ripe?
Thank you so much in advance!! I know it's not "normal" to be wanting/needing to ripen the cervix when you are only 36 weeks along. But because of my preeclampsia and needing to be induced soon, it is better.
at 35 weeks braxton hicks contractions can be very regular and stron and canbe mistaken for the real thing, even the doctors can get mistaken by them. Do thewy settle down once you have had a warm shower or bath? If so then they will be braxton hicks. Raspberry leaf T is exceelent so your on the right track there, the problem you face is that your body is not yet ready, so you could try reflexology or acupucture. Most of the natural remedies only really work if you are around you due date but you could give those last 2 a try and see how you go, good luck
don't worry, must of us understand completely why you're trying to ripen your cervix right now - if you have severe preeclampsia, the typical rules for "too early to be trying to induce labor" just don't apply to you..so you don't need to justify yourself! <3
have they spoken to you about techniques they can use a few days prior to the induction, like cervadil? there's also something called cytoteq that they use to open the cervix, but it won't help soften it like the cervadil will...sex is the best HOME thing I can recommend, to be honest.
Stacey had some good ideas as well, but unfortunately NEEDING to be induced doesn't mean your body is READY for labor, so there just may be nothing you can do to soften it on your own and that's OK - a c-section is a better outcome than the alternative of the preeclampsia putting you both in danger for longer...so try not to go into the induction disappointed no matter what the outcome is.
BUT I really would talk to them about the prostaglandin gels that they can put into your vagina to artifically soften your cervix a few days before the induction..combine that with the dilation "balloons" and stuff like cytoteq, and a careful doctor who is mindful of trying to avoid a c-section will give you the best chance possible to avoid one. most of all try to relax - studies have proven that relaxation does the same thing for your cervix that it does for your rectal sphinctor - it helps to open it!
best of luck hon..keep us posted, will you? when is the induction scheduled?
Are you taking the evening primrose oil vaginally or orally? You can do both. Kinda a messy process but it's more effective if you use them vaginally. Also, sex is supposed to help...the sperm has properties that soften the cervix. EPO is an alternative to using sperm.
Thank you all so much for your responses and most of all for being understanding. The contractions I do have don't go away if I change position or walk around or take a bath. BUT they're not consistent.
Currently I'm taking the evening primrose oil orally. If I take it vaginally, do I just insert it like a tampon? And would I need to poke a hole in the pill first so that the oil gets out? Or would it just dissolve on its own?
We have tried sex and I actually haven't been checked for dilation since. So I don't know if it has helped. We shall see!
Its a rough situation you are in and I hope things work out for you because your options are more limited.
I honestly cant tell you what would work, I went into early labor two weeks ago and dilated to 3 CM and then stopped dilated... I have tried everything to move the process along and nothing is working, which is hilarious to me since I am already dilated, my baby is super low and engaged, and my cervix is mostly thinned out and extremely soft?? On the bright side, you are just trying to soften your cervix so your induction is more likely to be successful while im trying to push myself into active labor naturally so your job might be easier... unfortunately my regular strong contractions stopped after 3 days.
This is what I have learned over the last couple weeks..
Sex - probably the best thing so far.. The day I went into active labor, I was not dilated, had no contractions felt fine.. We had sex that evening then I was making dinner and my contractions were coming every 3 mins... Went to the hospital - dilated to 1 CM, then to 3 over the next day.. Of course, I stopped there but even if you could get to that part it would be a great help. I find sex gives me very consistent intense contractions still but the only issue is that even with doing this several times since that initial night, i dont seem to be progressing despite that at this time so baby must not be ready. but once again you are just trying to ripen your cervix and sex is great for it..
Raspberry Leaf tea- People swear by it, I have been using it over the last little bit and still no luck with it.. What I have learned through research is that the tea does nothing to help early labor but can greatly shorten the pushing stage of labor and it promotes uterine health.. I keep drinking it because whether it puts me in labor or not, the other benefits sound pretty good too..
Spicy food - does nothing for me...
Pineapple juice is suppose to ripen the cervix... i eat alot of pineapple and my cervix is quite soft so who knows...
Reflexology - I had a reflexology massage when things were moving for me.. and it didnt do anything for me but it felt really amazing.. the lady said it wont work for everyone and if your body isnt doing the process naturally then it most likely wont be successful. She did teach me the spot to rub if you dotn want to spend the money... So the inside of your ankle represents your reproduction organs.. the puffy spot around that area is your bladder.. if you use 3 fingers and feel up to a spot where you are just below your pointy bone, that is the spot for the uterus... you should do it on both feet and see which spot is more tight.. She said if something is going on in uterus then you should feel a little crunchy spot where you are suppose to rub.... But if you dont,you can still work it anyways... Her suggestion was to rub it this way: use one finger and rub the crunchy spot or general spot 3 times in a round motion then switch back to the 3 fingers and do 3 larger round rubs of the general area on the inside of your ankle.... repeat this 4 times then give yourself a 30 minute break and do it again..
Walking - do alot of walking especially if you are having contractions.. if your baby is already pushing against your cervix and is low then walking will put extra pressure on the cervix if you are walking... I always found my contractions got more intense and regular while walking so it can definitely help to pick things up...
the easy part for you any progress even if its minimal will greatly aid your induction so i hope some of these things work for you... i have thought about starting evening primrose myself but i also feel a bit burnt out from this trying time and am convinced now that i wont progress further until the baby decides its ready.... who knew I would be 39 weeks today when they were concerned i was going ot have the baby by 32 weeks.
I hope your inductions takes so you dont have to have the c-section
I just wanted to say I'm so glad you got the support and advice you need on here. When it comes to softening the cervix, I have no suggestions myself. I had a scheduled c section and never went into labour. I can compoletely understand you not wanting a c section but, I just want to let you know from experience, they aren't bad at all. I would actually do it over and over again. Best wishes to you!
I was in labor and delivery again last night to be monitored and my blood pressure was pretty high (140's-150's/high 90's). Just as they were getting ready to discharge me, though, I had a really big contraction and the baby's heart rate dropped. So they told me they were going to keep me for another 2 hours to monitor me closely and if it happened again, they were going to induce me right then! I was like, "Um ... I'm not ready for a baby TONIGHT!" :) I had an hour and a half of steady contractions - lasting between 1 and 1 1/2 minutes and coming every 2 minutes apart. I was laboring a lot in my back. But she checked my cervix and I still hadn't dilated so they sent me home.
I'm scheduled to be induced on the 19th!! Which is only 9 days away - so crazy!! I will be 37 weeks and 1 day, which my doctor said is considered technically full term at that point.
I still really want to find some ways to ripen my cervix before then so I can hopefully dilate naturally.
So if anyone else has any more recommendations, send them my way! :)
So perhaps the "home remedies" we've been doing are working. At my appointment today I was dilated to a 1 (I know it's only a 1, but it's progress from Sunday night!) and 90% effaced! Perhaps I WILL be ready to go when my induction date rolls around! Yay!
I dont normally respond to old post, but this is dangerous. Omg honey 34 weeks is way too early to induce labor your baby can be in the hopital for weeks. Dont be selfish. Baby isnt even considered full term until 37 weeks at least.
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