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Castor Oil Inductions By Gloria Lemay

Posted August 18th, 2011 in birth, Fresno birth, Fresno Birth Doula, labor, Uncategorized by Kathryn DiPalma

I am often asked what I think about using castor oil to try to get labor started.  From all that I have read this is not a good idea.  Labor does begin when the baby is ready to come.  Playing with these types of things is something that I don’t recommend to anyone.  This article was found on Gloria Lemay’s birth blog.

Castor Oil inductions

Posted on December 17, 2008 by gloria

Inducing with castor oil isn’t safe. Once swallowed the castor oil is hydrolized by intestinal lipases to recinoleic acid which stimulates intestinal secretion, decreases glucose absorption and increases intestinal motility. Castor oil is used in lipsticks, too. Many women who can tolerate the oil quite well on their lips get a reaction on their mouths if the oil converts to recinoleic acid. My question to a midwife who says castor oil is not absorbed is ‘Would you please provide me with references for that statement’.

It’s not so long ago that birthing women were given soap suds enemas (high, hot and a helluva lot) because someone started a rumor that soap was not absorbed through the colon. We know this is not true and that this black page in Obstetric history is best forgotten. Too many women have turned from saying ‘My doctor says’ to saying ‘My midwife says’. Take responsibility for your and your family’s health. It is fine to respect professionals but ask for references on everything you’re not l00 % sure of and use your internet to scope things out. There is so much crap that passes for science without anyone questioning it.

On the subject of all the women in a hurry to get their babies born: I was 3 weeks ‘overdue’ with my oldest daughter. What really helped me was that I had lunch with a friend at about 8 months pregnancy. Her son had been born 6 months before. When she saw me walk in the restaurant all hugely pregnant she said ‘Oh, Gloria, when I see you I miss my pregnancy so much’. I knew that one day I’d be saying that, too, so I made up my mind to enjoy it as long as possible and I’m so glad I did. Six months from now you’ll be wondering what the rush was. I worry about women taking castor oil because you also give your baby castor oil when you take it through the gut. This means the baby will get diarrhea and pass meconium, too. Then you’re into all the transports for meconium.

– Gloria Lemay

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