You’ve reached the third trimester, which marks the coming of the end of your pregnancy. Trust me, with everything that went on during this pregnancy (read about it here) I was happy to reach the final weeks. So you’re not alone in wanting to find ways to have an easy labor and delivery experience. I’m sharing some tips to help your process of welcoming your new baby into the world easier.
After I “graduated” from seeing my Maternal Fetal Specialist, and hit 37 weeks, I was given the okay to do things to get things going. My doctor suggested taking long walks, which is supposed to help the baby’s head push down onto the cervix, thus inducing labor. In addition to that, she suggested having sex since there are hormones in semen that can help ripen/soften the cervix. Additionally, sex can also cause uterine contractions.
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Other things you should do are
- Squats to open up the pelvic cavity to encourage the baby to descend
- Kegel exercises to tighten your pelvic floor
Drink Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
During your third-trimester drinking red raspberry leaf tea is thought to help make delivery easier. The tea is thought to help with toning and tightening the muscles in the pelvic area, including the walls of your uterus. During my last pregnancy, I did drink the tea. Although I was induced at 41 weeks, I did notice that the cramping and contracting women experience post-delivery, I didn’t feel.
I purchased Earth Mama Red Raspberry Leaf Tea from Amazon.com.
Prevent Tearing of the Perineum
One of my biggest fears, when I was pregnant with my Mini-Me, was getting a bad tear or having an episiotomy. Guess what? I had an episiotomy. As much as I asked my husband to massage my perineum – the area between the anus and vagina – he didn’t. Yes, there are instructions on doing it yourself, but imagine reaching down there with a huge belly in the way. Trust me, it’s not effective.
A Perineal massage is done during the last four to six weeks of pregnancy in order to stretch the area to reduce tearing during delivery. Olive, coconut, grapeseed, or sunflower oil can be used to do this stretching. Here are step-by-step instructions on how to do a perineal massage: How to do a Perineal Massage.
Eat Dates to Help Soften Cervix
There are evidence-based studies and anecdotal stories of women who have eaten dates to not only ripen their cervix but to shorten labor. Studies also show that eating dates during the third-trimester decrease postpartum blood loss. The recommended amount is between 60 – 80 grams, which is between four to six dates a day.
RELATED: Eating Dates to Start Labor
I love dates! They’re so good with unsweetened tea. On the other hand, I know that due to their sweetness, dates can be offputting. You may want to try having them in one of the following ways:
- In a smoothie
- Stuffed with cheese
- Over a salad
- Wrapped in bacon
Warning: I know people suggest taking castor oil or midwives brew. Don’t do it to yourself. It can give you diarrhea which can lead to dehydration, cause painful contractions, and in some instances cause your unborn child to swallow meconium.
As with anything speak to your healthcare provider first before trying something that can potentially harm you or your baby.