There is a lot to get done before an induction. Some of it is education, but there is also preparation for your hospital stay and for how you will feel before you come home!
How do I know all of this? Hi, I’m Hilary — I’m The Pregnancy Nurse. I’ve been an L&D RN since 2001. I’d love to join you on your pregnancy journey:
What to Do Before an Induction:
Talk to your doctor
Before an induction, your doctor has a duty to give you informed consent. Informed consent includes:
This is especially true of a medically necessary induction. That means an induction because there is a medical reason your provider thinks you need it.
Top Reasons Why People Need a Medically Necessary Induction:
- Baby too big (LGA)
- Baby too small (SGA)
- Too little amniotic fluid (low AFI) or too much fluid (polyhydramnios)
- Cholestasis (a blockage of your bile duct in pregnancy which can be dangerous)
BTW, I talk a lot about all the test your doctor might order to diagnose the reasons you might need to be induced in my free prenatal class.
I also talk more about these reasons in my post on 37 week inductions, because there should be a pretty good reason to be induced at 37 weeks (like one of those that I listed).
Reasons for an Elective Induction
There are a lot of reasons to choose to be induced, but your doctor should still inform you of the risks, benefits and alternatives.
Understand what will happen during your induction.
After you and the doctor make the decision to be induced, it’s time to learn what will happen in your induction.
I give you a basic idea in this post on how long induction can take.
Your provider can tell you more specifics to your own healthcare situation.
I go through the whole process (I have a whole chapter on it) in this class.
Understanding how your labor will go and what to expect will make it SO much easier, and I have even made that class doable in 2-3 hours, so you still have time!
Before Induction Checklist
Beyond the medical stuff, there is still plenty to be DONE before you have an induction.
Enjoy the chance you have to have a little plan in the un-plannable, and make sure to get these things done or ready:
If you have other kids at home, make sure there is a safe place for your other child(ren). Have a basic idea of what dad will be doing while you’re in the hospital.
I would also recommend trying to prepare as you can
Get Stuff Done
Get Ready for Baby
Get the Carseat Ready
The ONE thing you can’t leave the hospital without is the car seat, so be sure to put it in the car and know how to use it.
SO many new parents have no idea how to even use their carseat. And officially we are not allowed to show you how to use it.
Prepare for Postpartum Care
There are some things you’ll also need for your postpartum body:
That checklist has all the things you’ll want — but let me give you the top 3:
LARGE pads — I actually mean Depends (these are adult diapers). This will prevent you from leaking when you sleep or nap (you will bleed a lot in the beginning, and holding your urine might also be an issue).
Some women prefer these washable undies.
I would also recommend getting a couple of packs heavy pads for once you’re not bleeding as much.
I am also a big fan of “padcicles” — I hope to do a video about it soon, but google it and you’ll find some good recipes. You put them on your bum when you’re sore, and sound so great.
Back in the day I just kept Tucks in the fridge — but — padcicles sound better.
Pack your bag
You have a chance to be really methodical about what you put in your bag. i have a whole post that outlines what to put in your hospital bag on my sister blog. It includes a labor bag, postpartum bag, baby bag and a dad bag.
Take time for YOU!
Get that last meal out — where you can enjoy it alone. Your meals that you get to eat with both hands may not be as frequent in the coming months.
Whatever you can do to get som decent sleep the night before your induction, it will be worth it. Things I recommend:
- Relaxing essential oils
- Possibly a benedryl (ask your doctor) if you’re feeling anxious and can’t stop your brain
- Maybe a long walk before bed to tire you out
- Listening to a meditation that relaxes you!
Write About It
I always recommend expectant parents to write about what they expect parenting to be like, and their goals and aspirations. Someday you’ll look back and happily remember the hope of what things would be like. 🙂
Hopefully those thought helped get you ready for your induction. I really do think that every couple needs a prenatal class, so if you don’t take mine, please consider taking one that fits you better. Remember that my prenatal class comes at 3 price points to fit your needs!