If your midwife or OB/GYN in Logan, Utah has recommended inducing labor, there are likely a few questions and unknowns you have when it comes to the process.
Most moms-to-be have envisioned the labor and delivery of their child and how it will all play out. A precisely laid out birth plan is part of that anticipated scenario for many women. However, it doesn’t always turn out exactly as expected.
Don’t worry—having a different birth experience than you’ve envisioned doesn’t mean you can’t play an active role in what you want for your labor and delivery. It also doesn’t have to be excessively stressful. In fact, labor induction—or the process of stimulating contractions before labor begins on its own—actually happens for 20% of women in labor.
It’s important to take the time to process any emotions you might be feeling if labor induction becomes a necessary or unexpected part of your story. It’s also helpful to educate and empower yourself as much as possible about when and why inductions are needed, what they can entail, and the potential risks and benefits.
As always, we invite you to keep in mind that the goal of your OB/GYN in Logan, Utah at Cache Valley Women’s Center is always the health of you and your baby and a positive outcome for each patient.
Why Might Labor Be Induced?
Each situation is different and there are a number of reasons why your doctor might recommend inducing labor. Common examples include if you’re around two weeks past your due date or if your water has broken but contractions aren’t starting or progressing. Induction may also be encouraged if you have high blood pressure, placental abruption, or low amniotic fluid levels.
What Are The Methods For Inducing Labor?
Your OB/GYN in Logan, Utah may use one or multiple methods for labor induction.
Some common examples include:
- a membrane sweep (when the doctor inserts a gloved finger into your cervix and “sweeps” the membranes that connect the amniotic sac to the uterine wall)
- a foley catheter (a small balloon inserted into the cervix then inflated)
- prostaglandins (a synthetic form of a naturally occurring hormone that helps soften and open your cervix)
- Pitocin (a synthetic form of the natural hormone oxytocin that helps the uterus contract)
- amniotomy (when your doctor uses an instrument to break the amniotic sac, or “break your water”)
What Are The Risks And Benefits Of Inducing Labor?
There are some risks associated with each method for labor induction. This can include a decrease in fetal heart rate, higher C-section rate, heavy bleeding, and uterine rupture. Women who may be particularly at risk are women who are attempting a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean), have placenta previa, or if your baby is breech.
However, some studies show that induction at 39 weeks can actually lead to lower rates of C-section, infant mortality, blood pressure problems in the mother, and NICU admissions.
It’s important to discuss the risks and benefits with your OB/GYN in Logan, Utah in order to determine what’s best for you and your baby.
OB/GYN In Logan, Utah
When it comes to labor, each situation is unpredictable and unique. But by arming yourself with the right information and knowing which questions to ask, you can feel comfortable and empowered when it comes to your birth story.