Tips for Labor Inductions | A Printable for Your Birth Bag
Today we’re sharing tips for labor inductions and we’ve included a FREE (shortened version) printable for you to grab at the end! At The Jacksonville Baby Company we help parents just like you prepare for birth and early parenting! In our classes we touch on these and many other topics, tips, and cool facts! Let’s jump right in!
Plan for it to take a while.
When discussing tips for labor inductions we feel it imperative to mention that it can take a long time sometimes. More times than not actually. Induced labors can take longer than a spontaneous labor, especially if it’s your first labor and if your Bishop score is 6 or less. What’s a Bishop score? It’s a measuring system used by medical professionals to determine how likely you are to go into spontaneous labor on your own.
Eat a nice meal before you arrive. It will probably be the last until after your baby makes his/hers/their arrival. This may mean no food for over 24 hours or more.
The check-in process, blood work, taking of your vitals, more paperwork, and time to begin medical inductions can take a couple of hours. Letting your birth partner rest before labor picks up is good way to ensure they show up refreshed and ready to support you best. Depending on your specific needs you may not want support for the first several hours. Support looks different for everyone! Maybe you have a lot of anxiety surrounding the intake process and need a support person upon check in, that’s okay to! Again, support is very individual so talk about this before the day comes.
Labor (especially induced) is a marathon, not a sprint. For this reason, once you’re settled try to get some sleep! You’ll need the most energy between active labor (the longest stage) 5-6cm-10cm until after your baby makes their debut!
What approach will be taken and what inductions methods will be used.
Talk with your doctors about which drugs and non-pharmaceutical methods they prefer to use. This gives you time to learn about those drugs/methods, possible alternatives, and also allows time for more discussion with your doctors before the big day if need be!
Different doctors often prefer different drugs/methods so make sure you have it charted if you have a strong preference. Even if the doctor you prefer is there when your induction begins it doesn’t mean they’ll be there to manage your entire labor and vice versa. Get to know the doctors in the practice you’ve selected.
Likewise it’s important to learn about how alternate methods such as nipple stimulation, movement, and environmental factors play into labor and birth!
Plan to labor exclusively in or near the hospital bed.
Labor inductions require closer monitoring of both you and your baby. This often means being in or most definitely near the bed. You’ll be attached to several monitors, an IV, pulse ox, blood pressure cuff, and possibly a catheter. Learn about positioning and comfort techniques that are helpful in bed and at your bedside.
Discuss pain medication before the day of your induction.
If you don’t know your options, what options do you have? Even if you have your mind made up and you don’t want any pain medicine, labor is intense and induced labors can be even more intense. Another thought is that you aren’t always a good candidate for certain pain medications/methods. So you would certainly want to know that ahead of time that way you know what’s on the table and what’s out of the question completely. Talking through your options before you need something is a good way to feel better informed and clear about what you would want versus making a decision on the fly you may later regret.
Take a well-rounded birth class!
Classes like that teach you and your birth partner about ALL of the different options, not just how to labor quietly, are priceless. Being familiar with certain terms and learning several different techniques can help you pull what you need when you need it most. Beware of method based classes.
Labor and childbirth unfold in a number of ways. It’s never one-size fits all. Not doing your due diligence doesn’t mean you will have an unfavorable birth, it doesn’t mean you can just go in an let your doctors do there thing, and it certainly doesn’t mean you can’t just use your intuition. However, it could just as easily be a set up for disappointment when there’s no reason to be.