Naturopathic perinatal care includes supporting the spontaneous onset of labor, which helps to prevent the use of a cascade of medical interventions that may compromise the overall birthing experience for mother and child. “Naturopathic induction” involves strategies that support spontaneous, efficient labor by respecting and working with your body’s and the baby’s natural timing. Perinatal naturopathic medicine is safe and very complementary to the care you receive from your midwives or obstetrician.
If you and your unborn baby are healthy you can choose to do one or more of the following from 36 weeks’ gestation to help bring about spontaneous labor:
1. Have sex!
2. Walk frequently
3. Nipple stimulation
4. Communicate positively and reassuringly with your unborn child
5. Relax or meditate
When desired, women can also choose the following in-office treatments to further encourage spontaneous labor beginning at 36 weeks:
4. Acupuncture (points specific to promote the energy of labor)
5. Botanical medicine (herbal preparations that encourage efficient labor)
These strategies are traditionally used to encourage labor to begin spontaneously and progress healthfully in its own right time. With naturopathic care, we understand that women’s bodies know how to give birth and we aim to work with these inherent rhythms and wisdom.
Naturopathic care is helpful for women and families from preconception to pregnancy, labor, the postpartum period and pediatric health care.
Dr. Elizabeth J. Cherevaty BScH, ND is a registered naturopathic doctor specializing in perinatal health and is an executive member of the Association of Perinatal Naturopathic Doctors (www.apnd.org).