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What Are Labour Inducing Risks?
Inducing labour depends on the health condition of the baby and the mother. You can consider inducing labour if you are only a few days due or if the baby is a week late than the due date. In these cases, there is no complication or risk to the infant or yourself. However, your doctor may consider inducing labour artificially if the baby is distressed or if you face certain health conditions. However, it comes with a few risks. Let us look at some of the risks that artificially induced labour can bring along with it.
1. Causes an Elevated Heart Rate in the Infant
The natural process prepares the baby to survive out of the womb automatically. Inducing labour means that you are actually artificially trying to get the baby delivered even before he is ready to take birth. This puts a lot of pressure on the baby, and it can cause fetal distress in them. Also, in an artificially induced induction, the contractions tend to be much more painful and longer than the ones that occur naturally. This might lead your baby to stay in a position that can make your labour longer and more painful.
2. Increased Risk of the Baby Being Admitted to the NICU
A baby born out of artificially induced labour is clearly not physically developed to survive on its own. They are more likely to have trouble eating, breathing or even maintaining a steady and normal body temperature. In such cases, they would need additional support and would need to be kept in the NICU. This restricts his contact with his parents or other caregivers, which is very much needed for a newborn infant. It also delays and makes it tougher to start him on breastfeeding.
3. Chances of C-section
The amniotic sac protects the baby from infections. Once the amniotic sac or the water breaks, the delivery should happen immediately. If the baby is not in a favourable position to be delivered vaginally or the doctor detects fetal distress in the baby, he will have to perform a Cesarean section to get the baby delivered. This will increase your duration of stay at the hospital. A C-section also has a longer recovery period than a normal vaginal delivery.
4. Increased Chances of Getting Jaundice
Jaundice in newborn babies is common. Jaundice is the inability of the liver to break down red blood cells. Babies born before they are ready for delivery usually tend to have an immature liver. This increases their chances of getting jaundice. Jaundice is absolutely treatable and fully cured, but this also means that the infant has to stay in the hospital for a longer duration for the treatment.
5. Increased Need for Pain Medication
Inducing labour artificially can cause your contractions to become stronger and more painful than they would naturally be. You might need to take epidurals to manage and reduce your pain.
6. Low Heart Rate
The primary medications used to induce labour, prostaglandin or oxytocin, may cause excessive contractions that can reduce oxygen availability to your baby, leading to a lower heart rate.
The decision to induce labour or not to induce labour artificially depends on the risk of developing complications during childbirth. It is entirely based on individual health requirements. The risk is assessed based on how long you are overdue in your pregnancy, your age, and how big the baby is. Artificial induction of labour should only be considered when there is more risk for the baby to stay in the womb than outside. Go for regular check-ups and always consult your doctor to know what is best for you and your baby. Have a happy pregnancy!