You’re 157 40.3 weeks pregnant and starting to feel a little concerned. Totally over it? Past that mythical date they told you to expect your little bundle of joy? Don’t worry. The combined wisdom of the internet and people I know have got you sorted. One or a combination of the following scientifically proven methods should bring on labour for you. I know I tried most of them and the ones I didn’t try? I have friends that did. They ALL totally worked — eventually.

Sure-fire ways to bring on labour

1. Curry.

At 900 months pregnant, the best thing to do is eat spicy food. The spicier, the better. How it works is simple. It basically sets your stomach and oesophagus on fire from the inside. Seriously, you’ve never had heartburn until you have it at full term, brought on by by a good lashing of curry enhanced by the addition of Homer Simpson-style Guatemalan insanity peppers. The resultant fire will no doubt create some kind of internal smoke issue, causing your beloved unborn’s self-preservation reflexes to kick in. They will get down low and go, go, go. Immediately. Well, really soon (ish).

2. Castor Oil.

Consider yourself fairly warned: It tastes like feet. This works by inducing cramps and violent diarrheoa. It stimulates intense contractions in your intestines which presumably brings out the competitive streak in your uterus, which should, if it cares AT ALL, follow suit with the contractions that will eventually deliver your sweet baby. Well, after you’re done with all that explosive diarrhoea, that is

3. Driving Down A Bumpy Road & Stuff Like That.

My cousin told me to go for a walk on the street, with one foot in the gutter and one on the path. The bumping and uneven gait is a bit like driving over bumps, depending on how heavy your tread is. Unfortunately, people will rush to your aid, assuming something is wrong with you or that you are, in fact, just a very rotund drunk person. Instead, I got my husband to drive me down streets with lots of speed humps. Or you can go wild and dance like no one is watching to get the same effect. Go nuts. The theory here is that the jostling will bounce your presumably head-down bub against your cervix at intervals. I don’t know if it helps to soften the cervix, dislodge the mucus plug or maybe to break your waters. My theory is it might piss off your unborn enough that they decide to make an appearance. 

4. Pineapple.

Hawaii, Platter Of Large Ripe Pineapples.

Eating pineapple is supposed to bring on labour because of a certain enzyme it contains. My theory is that it’s like a more gentle combination of curry and castor oil- eat enough of it and you’ll certainly get heartburn. There’s an excellent chance that that particular delight will be followed by the runs, or, in the case of the 40+ weeks pregnant women, the “speedy waddles”. If the past 400 weeks have taken their toll on you and you’re run down, you’ll probably have a mouth ulcer or two and sore gums at this point. Don’t worry, the pineapple will only sting while you’re eating it and for a short while after. This should add to your general misery and the baby will be well and truly over decide that it’s time to exit to get away from all the whinging and complaining!

5. Other Things To Eat and/or Drink.

A friend of mine had a dinner of basil pesto at the end of her first pregnancy and her water broke that night.

Another friend’s aunt swore by downing a shot of balsamic vinegar (heartburn factor??). Someone else I know of insisted Chinese takeaway was the key. Another friend said a pub chicken parmy was all it took. All of these things have been eaten by people who had babies afterwards. The proof is in the pudding!

6. Nipple Stimulation.

This is supposed to make your uterus contract in protest because it can possibly mean there is sex on the menu. Your body knows this could go badly because you might have to stop to pee several times during the act, it’s hard to get in a comfortable position and so on. So nipple stimulation that causes uterine pain (because it’s not like pregnancy gives you sore boobs, right??) is probably meant to put you off even attempting sex but your uterus doesn’t realise all that protest-squeezing may accidentally help to evict the baby.

7. Sex.

This one is infallible — have sex and that baby will be born! It’s all about prostoglandin and cervix softenings and stuff like that. At full term, both times, I felt like an uncoordinated whale who was only new to having limbs. My back hurt constantly. My sleep was interrupted regularly by my bladder, weirdly lucid dreams and having someone else’s foot jabbing a vital internal organ. If you can feel like that and still go through with sexy time, you deserve the reward of not being pregnant anymore. Your baby knows this, I’m sure.

Do These Things REALLY Bring On Labour?

Each and every method is tried and tested. Try one and you are guaranteed to have your baby – eventually. At the end of my last pregnancy, around the 40 week mark, I had a curry and went for a bumpy drive and viola! My daughter was born the following week! One of my besties is overdue with her second right now and she ate a pineapple just last week, so it’s only a matter of time, right?

I know, I know. A week ago? I can tell; you’re disappointed. You want a magic, fast and painless method that will bring on labour right away and get that bub out NOW.

We know relatively little about how labour actually starts but I read recently about research that suggests labour starts when the baby is ready. Not the old “Baby will come when they are ready!” platitude, but babies actually do come when they’re ready; they secrete a hormone from their lungs which signals the mother’s body to go into labour. How cool is that?

Got any tips or tricks I haven’t mentioned?

This article was modified from a post that first appeared on Handbag Mafia.

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Images: Getty