The end of pregnancy drags on and on. Every day can feel like a month when you are waiting for your baby's arrival. Many women have concerns about being overdue or even going to 40 weeks of pregnancy. Doctors will sometimes induce a woman at 39 weeks if it seems that the baby is big enough. Induction is not without risk, however. Any mother considering an induction needs to arm herself with all the information she can about the risks, process and possible outcomes of an induction at 39 weeks before convincing the doctor that it is a good choice for her and her baby.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Bishop's score
- Medical history of previous labours
Research the facts before asking to be induced. It is important to know the risks associated with an induction, such as a higher chance of needing a C-section. Learn about the Bishop's score. This score relates to how favourable your cervix is to induction (see resources). You do not want to tell your doctor that you would like to be induced if you have an unfavourable cervix. Your induction could fail and end in an emergency C-section, which is much harder to deal with and also costs more than a vaginal birth.
Prepare a list of reasons why you believe an induction is the best choice. Doctors will take you more seriously if you are prepared and educated on the topic. Some good reasons to be induced at 39 weeks include: large babies in past pregnancies; very fast labours in the past; a favourable Bishop score, and damage to the SI joint during past labours and deliveries. If you were induced in a previous birth and it went very smoothly, you have a better chance of having a good experience with a repeat induction. If you are a first time mother, your doctor will not likely agree to an induction unless you become sick or have a family history of very large babies or difficult births. Reasons such as "my mother is in town and will be gone next week" are not good enough. Never put your baby and yourself at risk for an induction for social reasons.
Talk to your doctor. Tell him you are concerned about going all the way to 40 weeks or longer. Give him all your reasons. Discuss your current Bishop's score (which may have changed since the previous appointment). Remind him of any past pregnancies and which medications were given to induce labour and how your body responded to them. Tell him that you understand the risks but that you really believe the benefits outweigh the risks and you believe being induced is the best choice for you.
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