Castor Oil Induction:
Is It Safe For Mom & Baby?

Castor Oil Induction

If you search castor oil induction, you'll find conflicting information. Most medical professionals will discourage you from trying natural methods to induce labor, including taking castor oil.

Others, like midwives, may even recommend it to you.

Castor oil can cause fatal distress and make you very sick and dehydrated. This is not the best way to begin labor. Also, some studies have linked fetal distress with meconium being passed during labor.

Meconium is the first stool passed by baby after he or she is born. If the baby is in distress, meconium can be passed before delivery.

If this happens, the baby can breathe amniotic fluid mixed with meconium into the lungs causing meconium aspiration syndrome, a very dangerous condition for baby.



What Is A Castor Oil Induction?

A castor oil induction consists of taking castor oil orally in the attempt to induce labor naturally. Among all the home remedies for inducing labor, castor oil to induce labor is the most popular, but also the most controversial and often dangerous because it can cause vomiting and severe abdominal pain, that not always leads to labor. In fact, only 57 % of castor oil inductions go into natural labor.

Is Castor Oil To Induce Labor Safe?

Many women will swear by it, while others who have done it, will tell you not to do it. If you are considering taking castor oil to induce labor, make sure to talk to your midwife or doctor before. Medicinally, castor oil has been used for centuries as a laxative because castor oil (Ricinus communis) has a very strong effect on the stomach and intestines.

In medical herbal medicine, castor oil is not recommended in large dose and it is used for constipation, even if there are milder herbs like Senna that work much better than castor oil for this purpose.

The health benefits of castor oil are due to its external uses as castor oil packs to cure arthritis, rheumatic pain, PMS, fibroids, ovarian cysts, breast cysts, etc.

How Does a Castor Oil To Induce Labor Work?

Castor oil is a very powerful laxative that stimulates the bowels and gives you diarrhea in some cases quite severe. As the bowels contract under the stimulation of the castor oil, so does the uterus putting a woman into labor.

Usually, after taking castor oil a woman will go into labor within 6-8 hours. Please note that even if labor starts, the bowel contractions may not. So, you will be in labor and you will have the runs.

Some women report a positive outcome after using castor oil to induce labor, while others have very unpleasant experiences. This is because every woman's body is different and if you are not really overdue, castor oil will only give your severe diarrhea and no labor.

Choosing to take castor oil to induce labor, is a decision that should not be made lightly. My understanding is that women can resort to castor oil to induce labor only if everything else fails, and they are really overdue and already dilated. Do not take castor oil unless you are past your due date by 10 days.

Why Castor Oil Induction Is said to Work?

The bowel stimulation by the castor oil induction triggers the production of prostaglandins, which are hormones that contracts the smooth muscles of bowls and uterus.

My Advise On Castor Oil Induction

If you are seriously thinking of using castor oil to induce labor, please consider the following to help you make your decision:

1. This should be your last resort, after having tried everything else.

2. You must be really overdue (41 weeks of pregnancy or more).

3. You should have some signs of prodromal labor like mild contractions that come and go.

4. You should be dilated a least 2-3 centimetres.

5. You should have medical support and consent.

6. You should drink lots of fluids to prevent dehydration.

A Natural Alternative to Castor Oil

If you are looking for a safer and effective technique to in induce labor without having to take castor oil, I advise acupressure. This guide teaches you how to use acupressure to induce labor.

Using pressure points to induce labor naturally can be very effective. There is convincing clinical evidence that proves that acupressure will induce labor and many midwives, medical physicians have noticed that there is a correlation between uterine contractions and the stimulation of certain acupressure points.

How Does Acupressure To Induce Labor Work?

Acupressure for labor induction works by applying firm pressure, or circular motion massage to certain acupressure points on the legs, hands, shoulders and back for a certain amount of time.

Acupressure is what I would recommend for those who are serious about using acupressure to induce labor naturally and to learn ways to ease labor pains. Debra Betts has put together and amazing book-guide and program that describes exactly how to use specific pressure points to induce labor.

Other Ways to Induce Labor Naturally

The safest alternative to induce labor is sex. Sex to induce labor is often overlooked, but it can be quite effective. Male sperm contains high amounts of prostaglandins, who are said to help induce uterine contractions in their overdue female partners. Some say that the woman has to orgasm in order to get into labor. When talking about home remedies to induce labor, it cannot get any homier than that! This option is definitely worth trying before even considering a castor oil induction.

Another alternative to using castor oil to induce labor is the use of evening primrose oil. This natural supplement contains prostaglandins that help ripen the cervix.

Alternative practitioners recommend the oral use of two 500 mg evening primrose oil capsules around 37 weeks of pregnancy. It can also be inserted into the cervix at bed time. Take 1-2 500 mg gel capsule of evening primrose, pierce it and inserted inside your cervix. Evening primrose oil will most likely not put you into labor, but it will help get things started. It is great for first time moms to help soften the cervix.

Remember, babies come when they are ready. And when mom is relaxed!

Take your time. Relax. In the end all will be well...


Many Blessings!





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