Are you 37 weeks pregnant and curious about inducing labor? You’re probably considering the pros and cons of this medical procedure. Labor induction is when your health care provider uses medications or other methods to help start labor.
The Pros of Inducing Labor
Inducing labor can help pregnant women who are due for delivery but aren’t in labor yet. This can happen when a baby is overdue, when a woman’s water has already broken or when health concerns arise. By inducing labor instead of waiting for it to start on its own, it reduces the risk of certain life-threatening scenarios, like an infection, to both the mother and baby.
In addition, inducing labor helps with recovery as the physical and hormonal changes shortly after delivery cause stress to the mother’s body. This also allows the mother to plan ahead and make decisions that help during any hospital stay after the birth.
The Cons of Inducing Labor
Some of the cons of labor induction are that it can negatively influence the health of the mother and baby. In some cases, this can mean the mother is at a higher risk for complications during delivery. Inducing labor can also lead to a longer and more painful labor than if it were to happen naturally. The baby is at risk of breathing complications during delivery if the labor process is too rushed.
Tread Lightly with Inducing Labor
Before deciding whether or not to induce labor, your health care provider should perform a number of tests and run through the possible outcomes. When you’re aware of all your options, you can make an educated choice. Overall, inducing labor carries risks, but keep in mind that when the benefits of inducing labor outweigh the cons, the procedure may be the best option.
At the end of the day, it’s important to know that medically induced labor doesn’t always have to mean a painful and long delivery process. Your doctor can fill you in on all the details that you should know about the induced labor process, so don’t be afraid to ask questions, no matter how small.