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How To Safely Induce Labor Using a Midwives Brew

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Once you’re past your due date, every day is more agonizing than the last. The pain and discomfort associated with pregnancy just become worse and worse as the days drag by.

If you don’t want to medically induce your labor, a midwives brew is an excellent alternative to get those contractions started!

Safety Precautions To Take When Using A Midwife’s Brew

Although these are a popular at-home remedy when you’re ready to meet your little one, it’s always best to take a few precautions. This guarantees that you will be safe and that your little one will be safe. 

Consult With Your Doctor Or Midwife First

There are certain medical conditions that can make pregnancy complicated or high risk. Starting labor before your body is ready can add to that risk.

If your little one is underdeveloped, it could also be a good idea to wait until they are ready to be born, even though this is uncomfortable for you. 

A doctor or midwife can also review the ingredients that you would like to use with you. They can confirm whether something will be safe for you and your baby.

Doctors are also full of useful tips. They might be able to recommend a particular brew that they have seen be successful before. 

Wait Until You’re Past Your Due Date

Although it can be tempting to drink one of these once you hit the 39-week mark, it’s best to wait until after your due date. The baby might not be ready to be born yet.

There is also a bit of last-minute development that takes place in that final week. It can be hard to deal with that last week, especially if you’ve had a miserable pregnancy, but it can be well worth it in the end. 

Make Sure You’re Hydrated Before And After

The main ingredient in a midwife’s brew is castor oil. This also the primary active ingredient that will help induce labor. One of the side effects of drinking it can be quite a few bowel movements.

You want to make sure that you’re hydrated before drinking it. Also, stay hydrated after drinking it just in case you wind up with a case of diarrhea.

If you are mildly dehydrated, a few extra loose bowel movements can make you severely dehydrated. Then, if you go into labor, it’s going to be pretty miserable. Instead, drink plenty of water for a few days beforehand. 

Only Drink A Little Bit At A Time

When you’re dying to go into labor, it can be tempting to chug plenty of castor oil in an effort to get contractions started. However, this can be very dangerous.

Castor oil is also used as a laxative. Common side effects can include diarrhea, vomiting, and intense stomach cramping.

If you do experience these side effects, they will be worse if the amount you drink is more. Instead, start off slow and drink a little bit at a time. 

How To Take Castor Oil To Induce Labor

Although this article is about using a midwife’s brew to induce labor, it’s important to understand how to take castor oil. This is the only active ingredient in the drink.

It’s the only thing that is going to induce labor. Other ingredients are to make it taste better or easier to drink. They have no impact on whether labor is going to start soon. 

Only Take Two Tablespoons At A Time

You should never overdo it with castor oil. It’s better to start small instead of winding up with horrid side effects that can make labor more painful, and make you sick.

Castor oil by nature can also be rather dehydrating. It’s always better to stay on the safe side. 

Take It Once Every 24 Hours, And No More Than That

When using castor oil to induce labor, it’s important that you not take too much. Once per 24 hours is more than enough. There is also a delayed effect with castor oil.

It can start labor in 2-6 hours after you take it. In other situations, it can take up to 24 hours. This is why it’s recommended that you only take a midwife’s brew to induce labor once daily. Make sure that you take it at the same time. 

How To Make A Midwife’s Brew To Induce Labor

midwives brew

When you make your brew, you can include quite a few different things. There are tons of recipes available online to help you make a delicious drink. It can be as simple, or as extravagant, as you would like for it to be. 

You Need Two Tablespoons Castor Oil

This is the main ingredient and the only one that genuinely matters. Castor oil is what induces labor. The rest of the ingredients are to make it taste amazing. Start off by putting the castor oil in the cup first. 

Other Ingredients To Add To Your Midwife’s Brew

You can add almost anything else into your brew. This is wonderful because it can be catered to your individual taste. These are some common ingredients you’ll come across if you want to make this brew: 

  • Almond butter
  • Apricot juice
  • Pineapple juice
  • Tea (any flavor that you like)
  • Mango nectar
  • Ginger ale
  • Juice (any juice that you enjoy will work)

These are common ingredients, but you can come up with your own if you like. Have some fun with this and create your own recipe!

Midwife’s Brew To Induce Labor Recipes

I’m a big fan of having fun with things and being creative. However, I’m also not 40 weeks pregnant and miserable. When I was, having fun or being creative was not on my mind.

If you’re leaning a bit more towards the way I was when I was pregnant, check out these recipes: 

You can also use: 

    • 2 tbsp castor oil
    • 6 drops lemon verbena oil
    • 2 tbsp almond butter (make sure to put it in the blender to guarantee that it’s smooth before adding it)
    • 6 oz pineapple or apricot juice

The main problem that people have is figuring out what lemon verbena oil is. It sounds like an essential oil. However, you can just buy the tea with that ingredient and it’s the same thing.

They sell it at most grocery stores and even department stores that have a grocery section like Walmart or Target. If you can wait, you can order some, too. 

Things To Keep In Mind

This is one of the most popular ways to naturally induce labor at home. If you choose this method, there are quite a few things that you need to keep in mind. 

It Doesn’t Work For Everyone

This method of natural labor induction has a very high success rate. As with everything, it doesn’t work for everyone. If you haven’t started labor within a few hours, don’t drink more.

This can make you sick. If labor hasn’t started by 24-48 hours, you can safely drink more. However, you might not go into labor as quickly as everyone else. 

Don’t Use This Method To Make Labor Quicker

If you’re already in labor, it’s understandable that you want it to be over quickly. Drinking castor oil to make that happen is not a good idea. This can make labor much more painful due to the side effects of castor oil. 

You’re Going To Have A Bowel Movement Or Three

Even if you don’t get diarrhea, you’re still going to have a bowel movement. Most people have a few of them. It just depends on how much crap (literally) is inside of you.

You are also more likely to have bowel movements during labor. I know that sounds gross, but it happens all the time, and there’s no need to be embarrassed about it.

However, you should mentally prepare yourself for that beforehand, especially if you’re using castor oil. 

This Can Also Be A Sedative

On top of the other side effects, some people report feeling very tired after drinking a midwives’ brew to induce labor. Keep this in mind before you drink one.

Take the day off work, if possible. Make sure that you clear the day so that you can get plenty of rest. There’s nothing wrong with taking a nap while you wait on those contractions to start! 

In Conclusion

If you’re determined to go into labor quickly, a midwife’s brew is the way to go. These can be effective in under 24 hours so that you can finally get the relief that you need. Remember to be safe, don’t drink too much, and make sure that you’re hydrated!

Medical Disclaimer. All content and media on the MomInformed Website is created and published online for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice.

My name is Amber Dixon. I am a mother to three wonderful children, and recently welcomed a beautiful grandson into the world as well as into my home. I've learned a great deal about raising children through my own experiences as a mother, but also from several other places. While working at a daycare full time, I learned about childhood development, teaching children, and more. Through earning degrees in Social Work, I was educated about human development, including a great deal about children and childhood development. My education and experience combined have taught me a lot about children of every stage and age, and I hope that I can help you on your journey to becoming the best parent that you can be!