Natural Childbirth – Have Fun With Old Wives Tales!

Well ladies, I have written many articles on pregnancy, natural birth, natural induction and breastfeeding.  So I thought I would write a fun article with a few old wives tales! 


Firstly, the biggest question I get asked is how to tell what sex my baby is!!  There is really no sure way to determine your baby’s sex unless you have an ultrasound.  Although, even now ultrasonographers have to say that  it is not 100% accurate.  Some women have been told they are having a girl and out pops a boy!!  You can imagine their surprise when they realise that they have to put this beautiful boy into pink jumpsuits!


I have been looking after birthing women for a decade and I always try and guess the sex of the baby and do you know what, I am usually right.  What I base my decision on is the baby’s heart rate.  A higher heart rate, above 140bpm, can indicate a girl and below 140bpm a boy.  Now, if you are listening to your baby’s heart rate before 20 weeks then it will most likely be high anyway, so this is not accurate.  Also if you hear your baby’s heart rate for a short time, say a minute, it is not long enough to get a base line.  If you are in labour and your baby’s heart rate is listened to for over a minute you can get a base line, it is this baseline that I base my decision on.  I know this sounds silly, however, I am right about 80% of the time!


Another old wives tale is to do with heart burn.  A lot of women suffer heart burn during pregnancy, this is caused by a few factors.  Your hormone relaxin relaxes your muscles this includes the muscle around your stomach that prevents food from coming back up once swallowed.  When this relaxes you may find that some stomach acids come back up and cause a burning sensation.  Now enough of that boring stuff……what I wanted to say was that old wives believe that the more heart burn you have the more hair your child will have.  I hear this every day and do you know what……it is almost always WRONG!  And I am a testament to that, I had terrible heart burn with both my babies and they were bald until they were 18 months old.  Let me know if you can dispute this!!


Does drinking castor oil induce labour?  This has been around for a while and women do partake in this horrible exercise.  The fact is that it does work, for some women!  When giving advice on natural induction methods it is all on the basis that it may work.  It is hard to measure as labour could have started anyway if you exhaust all your other options.  Castor oil works by causing your bowel to become stimulated, this in turn can stimulate your uterus and contractions may start.  Personally I would not try it, however, I have not been over 2 weeks over due and really adamant on not having a medical induction.  It is amazing what women would try……..women and mothers are the strongest people on this earth and if drinking castor oil will get them the birth they want then bottoms up!!


If you have any questions or want to tell me about your old wives tale from your own experience or your great, great grandmothers then drop me a line through my blog.  If you want to learn some great factual ways that you can have a fantastic empowering birth then take a look at my book on how to have a natural birth without fear, pain or worry.  Take care and enjoy your pregnancy.


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