The Labor Stim Rub Down
The place in which I provide massage offers a “pressure point” session. This is a massage where we press the known pressure points on your body that could help stimulate labor. Every time a client comes in I get asked the same question: “Does this actually work?” There is one response I give these women, who are potentially at their breaking point; “Well, your body does need to be somewhat ready.”
Many doulas get asked this innocent question, but it’s a loaded question. There are so many possibilities: where her body could be at, in the pregnancy, and how her body reacts to different stimulants; because every woman’s body is different. That being said, I wanted to explain some of the techniques that I use to try and help women progress to the early labor stage.
The top thing I like to use are my oils. I’m obsessed, it’s no one’s fault. After doing some research I found the most helpful oils to help “induce labor” were clary sage, jasmine, rose, ylang ylang and lavender.
1. Clary sage in my opinion is the most stimulating to kick start the natural labor process. It is advised to ONLY use clary sage during this time to avoid any medical induction, as it is not safe during pregnancy. As a doula, I also love using clary sage and jasmine in the early stage of labor to help progress faster.
2. Jasmine is known to stimulate uterine contractions. If already experiencing contractions, mama can use it to try to intensify them. Again, just like clary sage, it is only recommended to use this oil at the time of avoiding induction.
3. Rose is my favorite for softening! Just as it does for your skin, it can help soften your ligaments and pelvic floor. By doing so, it can help open up your pelvis, preparing itself to allow baby through.
4. Lavender… we all know lavender is great at promoting relaxation, which, who doesn’t need help with that when preparing for baby? However, did you know that it can be used as a pain reliever as well? I personally, use a lavender roller when I have migraines!
5. Ylang ylang is also another great option for relaxation. What some mamas don’t know, is that sometimes what our bodies really need in order to let go and let labor happen is just simple relaxation!
Aren’t oils amazing and the things they can do for us and our bodies? They can even be beneficial for your sweet baby. I also diffuse these oils during my massage sessions with clients past their due date, and use the roller for those pressure points (Which I can outline on the next post)!
I also like to throw in a little rocking action. Have you ever seen a clip of a midwife or doula rocking their patient’s pelvis? That jiggling can help encourage baby come down through the pelvis. It also takes a little “control” away from mama’s muscles. Mothers tend to clench without even knowing it, they hold their tension in, and if you lift their arm you may notice it doesn’t drop, they will hold it up. When you jiggle it, they and their body realize they need to relax, let go and let things happen.
Last is HEAT. It’s called “starting a fire,” I tell my clients. This sweet little baby LOVES being warm and safe in your womb, this sweet, haven you had made for them. Why would they want to come out to that cold, loud world? They are saying “no thanks, I’ll stay in here.” We have to coax them with a warm invite, by starting a fire on the outside of our body. Mostly, the inner thighs and bottoms of the feet. We do this by rubbing friction against them. You will feel the areas get not just warm, but hot, like a fire! Not only does it heat up, but it jiggles them too!
While I incorporate all of these things into my massage sessions for my clients wishing to “induce” I tell them to go home and practice it as well. These techniques along with squats and side lunges. I cannot promise it works no matter what, but we have had a good amount of women bringing their babies earth side a couple days later! If you want to be really sure you could add that castor oil trick, but I just can’t stomach the thought of ever enduring this myself (YUCK).
That’s about it. Good Luck Mamas! Just remember… baby will come when they are well and ready! When that time comes, they will be a beautiful, amazing miracle and worth every once of trouble that it was getting them here! You can do this.