It’s very important to talk about induction since 1 in 5 births in UK are induced.
What is induction?
Induction is when your care provider starts your labour artificially.
When is induction needed?
There are several reasons why women might need to be induced, but in this country most the inductions are performed for post dates, that means, your labour hasn’t started naturally by 42 weeks, this is not a medical reason for induction, if you and your baby are healthy.
If you pass the 42 weeks an decide not to be induced you should be offered increased monitoring to check your baby’s health.
Another of the reasons:
-Concerns about the baby’s health
-Your waters have broken
-you have a medical condition such as diabetes, high blood pressure, obstetric cholestasis.
Can I still use hypnobirthing if I’m having an induction?
This is when all the hypnobirthing tools and decision-making process are coming to play a big role.
Make sure that when you’re discussing induction with your care provider you have a full and open conversation about your options, asking all the questions that you might have.
Use your ‘BRAINS’ when discussing choices with your care provider
B – what are the Benefits for mum and/or baby R – what are the Risks for mum and/or baby A – what are your Alternatives I – what does our Intuition tell you N – what if we did Nothing S – Space to discuss your options
What happens with an induction?
There are three steps to an induction. Some women only need the first, some need all three and some may start at step 2 or 3 depending on if their progression.
Step 1 – Ripening the cervix
The cervix needs softening, opening and thinning to start labour. Usually a prostaglandin pessary applied to your cervix is used to promote the ripening of the cervix.
Some women may already be ripening so they can skip this step.
Step 2 – Release of membranes
The next step is to release the membranes around the baby’s head, hopping that when that bubble of fluid around babies head is gone the pressure of the head on mum’s cervix will cause the opening.
After this procedure your baby is not longer sealed in a sterile environment so your health provider might offer antibiotics, this is something you can accept, or decline, depending on how you feel around the infection statistics.
Some women may have already broken the membranes so they’ll go straight to step three.
Step 3 – Artificial oxytocin (syntocinon)
A syntocinon drip is administered; this synthetic hormone causes the uterus to surge. When you are under this synthetic hormone your body will stop producing it’s own oxytocin that means that no endorphins (natural pain relief) will be segregated neither, therefore, surges can be more intense.
So, you have decided that an induction is the best choice for you and your baby, now what?
I understand that if you’ve prepared with Hypnobirthing you were expecting to have a certain type of birth. But actually at this point, when things are not going as planed is when your hypnobirthing preparation is going to help you wonders.
Make from the hospital place a lovely safe place to birth your baby, redecorate it, dime lights, fairy lights, positive affirmations, music, electric burner with essential oils, you pillow (this is a very important one) all is valid!
No time for redecorating? Eye mask, headphones and some drops of essential oil on your wrists will take you away from that room in no time.
Birth Partner, your rock:
Make sure that your birth partner knows your birth preferences inside out, they’ll be there to give you all the support you need and help you to make the right choices.
Birth partner’s to do list:
· Give encouragement: Tell her how much you love her, you’re proud of her, she’s doing a great job and all sort of loving words.
· Physical touch: calming touch, stroking, massage, acupressure, hip counter pressure, cuddles and kisses, all is good to help the production of oxytocin/endorphins.
· Make mum as comfortable as possible – pillows, blankets, towels.
· Offer water often and bites of protein bars or similar to keep her nourished.
· Put to practice all the hypnobirthing tools you’ve learnt, help her with the breathing and visualisations, and use the prompts to trigger relaxation.
Mums: Recalculate and get into the right mindset for this new journey.
You may be disappointed at this point, the birth you wanted has been diverted, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t have a positive experience.
You have made this decision; you know that this is the best for you and for your baby now, so focus on the positive side of it.
It’s time to recalculate, accept and adapt to this new situation, use your Hypnobirthing techniques, to stay calm and relaxed so you can produce the right hormones to help you to go through the process.
Communicate openly with your birth partner and let them know if you need any support or reassurance.
Remind yourself that you and your baby are safe and get excited about meeting your baby soon.
You got this mama! Every birth can be a positive one.