Castor oil to induce labor: Risks and dangers. Over the years, people have tried many different methods to help induce labor naturally, from eating spicy foods to bouncing on an exercise ball. Some people may be tempted to try castor oil as a way to induce labor.
Those who plan to use castor oil to induce labor should try to find out about its effectiveness, especially the safety concerns associated with its use for this purpose, before trying it. Indeed, there are significant dangers.
Read on for more information on the risks and dangers of using castor oil to induce labor, that labor induction is a good idea, and other ways that can help those who wish.
Castor oil to induce labor
Castor oil is an extract of Ricinus communis. R. communis is originally from South Asia.
For centuries, people have used castor oil for various ailments, although most applications have only anecdotal evidence. Few scientific studies have focused on the effectiveness of castor oil in the treatment of health conditions.
Castor oil is a common ingredient in soaps, coatings, lubricants and other commercial products. It contains several allergenic proteins, including ricin, which research indicates that it is a potent and dangerous plant toxin.
However, after eliminating these potentially dangerous substances, people can use castor oil for pharmaceutical purposes. For example, castor oil can help with constipation. Learn more about castor oil and constipation here.
Castor oil also has potential benefits for the face and skin. Read about them here.
According to the University of Texas Southwest Medical Center, castor oil will likely cause uterine contractions and irritation. Although they may appear to be labor contractions, they are more likely the result of digestive distress than actual labor.
In fact, they go on to say that women who take castor oil by mouth are no more likely to get into work than those who do not.
However, a recent study found that there is a link between taking castor oil and getting to work. The study concluded that castor oil can cause labor within 24 hours if a woman is 40 weeks pregnant.
The researchers conducted the study using women in their 40th and 41st weeks of pregnancy, over a period of 5 years.
A smaller study, this time from 2000, revealed that 57.7% of women who took castor oil went into labor within 24 hours. Only 4.2% of women who did not receive castor oil started work within 24 hours. The evidence from this study suggests that castor oil may help induce labor.
However, a 2009 study found no link between taking castor oil and inducing labor. This study included more than 600 participants during week 40 or more of their pregnancies. The study concluded that castor oil had no effect on the time of birth. Nor does it seem to have any harmful effects.
A Study 2018 have found that castor oil induction is more effective in women who have already had babies. The researchers did not report any adverse effects on their sample of 81 pregnant women.
Another Study 2018 thought back to women who had used castor oil (when she was 40 to 41 weeks pregnant) under the care of their doctor, and found that it was effective in inducing labor within 24 hours for most women.
Although the results of the studies have been mixed in terms of the work induction capabilities of castor oil, none of these studies has examined safety issues for the mother or fetus.
In previous studies, researchers found no known risks to the fetus.
However, the mother may experience side effects from ingesting castor oil. Some potential side effects could include:
Women with sensitive stomachs or other gastrointestinal conditions should avoid taking castor oil. In addition, those who have had a caesarean in the past should never attempt to ingest castor oil during pregnancy. Find out why below.
In most cases, the body will cause labor when it is ready to give birth. Some women may have premature labor, while others may have labor later than the expected date of delivery.
Above all, women who have had a cesarean delivery should never attempt to induce labor. This is due to the fact this can cause uterine rupture.
the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine describe the trip in the following way:
- 37–38 weeks and 6 days as “early term”
- 39 to 40 weeks and 6 days in “full time”
- 41 weeks to 41 weeks and 6 days in “late term”
- 42 weeks and later as “post-mandate”
If a woman is at term or beyond and has not yet given birth, a healthcare professional will likely consider giving birth or possibly planning a cesarean.
Some other reasons why a doctor may choose to induce labor include:
- rupture of the placenta
- uterine infection
- a lack of amniotic fluid around the fetus
- contractions without breaking the water
- the fetus has stopped growing at the expected rate
- have high blood pressure, diabetes or another condition that can put your mother or fetus at risk
There is no proven way to induce homework. A doctor or health care professional may cause work in the hospital or other clinical setting.
That said, there are other methods of inducing labor that can be effective. These include:
- nipple stimulation
- eat spicy food
- walking and exercise
It is important to note, however, that none of these methods is scientifically proven.
Anyone concerned about the onset of labor should speak to a doctor or health care professional before trying a method themselves.
People should avoid using castor oil in an attempt to induce labor, as there is no scientific evidence to prove its effectiveness for this purpose. It is much safer to work with a doctor if it is time to induce labor. The induction of labor before 40 weeks poses a risk to the fetus.
No studies have found direct risks or dangers to the fetus using castor oil, but in the mother, it can cause diarrhoea, false contractions, dehydration and other side effects related to the stomach.
People who wish to induce labor should speak to a doctor about their concerns.
There is no proven home-based method to induce labor, but a doctor or health care professional can help induce labor in a clinical setting if there is a need.