40 weeks. How to proceed? — The Bump
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40 weeks. How to proceed?

I'm due today. My son was a successful bradley birth, no intervention needed. My next appointment is tomorrow, and I know the MWs will start suggesting sweeping membranes, NST, BPP etc.  In theory I'm ok with those things, but worried they might lead to other interventions etc.

What interventions and tests proved worth it to you after your due date? Is sweeping the membranes a bad idea, along the lines of inducing and the potential for it to slow things down? I want to go pain med free again, but even more than that, another medical condition may dictate that in the case of a csection it would have to be under general anesthesia - so I have even bigger reasons for wanting to go as natural as possible. Not sure where to draw the line...

Re: 40 weeks. How to proceed?

  • nst and bpp are simply observational so I wouldn't worry too much about them since if they lead to further intervention it will be because it is needed and can be used to buy you more time to naturally go into labor. Sweeping membranes can be helpful if you're running out of time for a natural birth but it won't start anything if you or baby aren't ready and has a chance of ROM so I would avoid doing so until necessary. How long will they allow you to go "over due?"

    Engaged 10/2/1202
    BFP (a lil quicker than expected) 12/7/2012
    Married to my best friend 12/24/2012
    Beautiful baby girl arrived 8/15/2013
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  • In my experience, nst and bpp gave information to know conditions were good and lo was doing great. They prevented unnecessarily early interventions.
    Membrane stripping started early labor for me, but I had prolonged early labor that contributed (IMO) to the challenges I experienced. Most women report either no effect or a positive experience with it.
    Boy 10.6.13
    Labored at freestanding birth center using hypnobirthing techniques
    Delivered via csection
    SolarzMom3
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  • Let your body decide when it's time. This is the most efficient way to go through labor and delivery. I know it's so, so difficult to be patient in these last few days, but as you well know, worth it. Once you start interfering with a natural process, you run the risk of the intervention snowball, and that's never any fun. Your body and baby will thank you :)
  • Rest now. I would try epo, nipple stimulation and lots of walking and sex if nothin by 41 weeks and you are going to be pressured for induction.
    I would be open to a membrane sweep as a second last resort, the chance of your waters being broken before baby is ready is a little freaky.
    Good luck!! I hope you can rest a bit:)
  • I had a positive experience with having my membranes swept the day after my due date but I was already 3cm dilated and 75% effaced.  If I had not been I probably would have declined a membrane sweep.  NSTs and BPPs are to make sure baby is doing ok and the only way they would lead to more intervention is if baby was not doing ok. 
  • Rest now. I would try epo, nipple stimulation and lots of walking and sex if nothin by 41 weeks and you are going to be pressured for induction. I would be open to a membrane sweep as a second last resort, the chance of your waters being broken before baby is ready is a little freaky. Good luck!! I hope you can rest a bit:)
    This and consider castor oil if your provider is suggesting medical induction. Castor oil worked for me. Wasn't bad at all. PM me if you have questions.
    8.7.04 Married the Man
    7.16.11 Welcomed the Boy (#1)
    8.19.13 Welcomed the Boy (#2)

  • Caster oil is not something you should do on your own without the recommendation from your provider. It is NOT pleasant experience. I would not just through that around. It can cause dehydration and is very uncomfortable spending a better part of the day in the bathroom.
    Yogakittenhalfthetree
  • Unless your doctor is worried, you don't need to do anything. When I hit 40 weeks I asked my MW about an NST or membrane sweep and she looked at me as if I were crazy to suggest that. She wouldn't even consider an NST until closer to 42 weeks. Baby came on her own at 40+6.
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