There are many reasons that medical professionals decide to induce labour, but regardless of the case it is not recommended unless a severe health risk exists to induce labour until the 39th week of pregnancy. While inducing labour at 39 weeks has become extremely popular, bear in mind that due dates are not always accurate based on each woman’s unique ovulation period and that the average length of pregnancy is considered to be 42 weeks making it worthwhile to consider waiting a few more weeks for birth to occur naturally.
However, in some situations inducing labour at 39 weeks cannot be avoided including if the baby or birth mother is facing a critical health situation that needs to be remedied. Hypotension, kidney disease, and diabetes in the birth mother are all viable reasons to induce the birth of a child. If your water breaks and labour does not begin many times a woman will be induced to reduce the change of infection to the baby and within the mother’s uterus.
If your doctor decides to induce labour at 39 weeks a variety of measures may be taken to encourage the start of labour including the use of medication or other techniques that have been proven to stimulate the body into beginning contractions. A doctor may choose to insert medication through prostaglandins into the vagina or via a Foley catheter that is filled with water to help strain the cervix so that it naturally dilates and labour contractions begin.