Research shows that fetal lungs themselves provide the signal to initiate labour. When the fetal lungs are sufficiently mature to withstand the transition from life in fluid to airbreathing a protein is released that triggers labour. Disrupting this normal process before a baby is ready can cause a cascade of negative complications.
What Happens When Babies Are Born Early?
Being born early (premature) can cause many complications for babies, mostly related to breathing problems. The earlier a baby is born, the less surfactant a baby is likely to have produced in preparation for breathing. Without enough lung surfactant, babies must work much harder to breathe. They can become exhausted and may not get enough oxygen. This is called infant respiratory distress syndrome (IRDS) and babies will need special care to help them until their lungs are further developed. Babies with IRDS will need to be given oxygen via ventilation and receive surfactant therapy until their lungs have developed enough to breathe without assistance.
You may feel a sense of helplessness if your medical provider is making fearful comments about setting an induction date. Or Maybe you are planning a midwife led birth at home or in Birth center but by state laws you can only utilize their professional care within a certain time frame.
You are gifted with a natural intuition and it increases a lot during pregnancy. Doctors and other care providers cannot do things without YOUR permission.
Remember that, always.
Worrying about your baby not coming out doesn't do anything but raise your stress levels. Trust in the timing of nature. Relax, get in a bath with some Epsom salts and herbs, have a walk with a dear friend, bake something delicious, enjoy life.
And trust. Trust. Trust.
Babies release a special protein from their lungs when they are ready to be born. This signifies to the mother, "hey I am soon rlip-eady to breathe outside of this womb!" And then labor starts from there. Before that, it is highly likely that your baby is NOT ready to come out yet.
Why rush? Because of a date and a doctor's opinion? YES, emergencies do sometimes arise- but going over a date is not an emergency in and of itself. Stand up to your care providers if inducing is not what you desire in your low risk pregnancy.
It's totally normal to be feeling all kinds of emotions when there is a stigma built around 40 weeks or you're 'late'.
You are not late, you are right on time!
40 weeks means you made it, now it's time to rest because your baby will be here within the next few weeks, this is what nature intended.
Let your excitement and anxiousness create strength and motivation to hold space to bring your baby earthside. This is the first act of honoring your baby in this physical world, allowing them to naturally descend from your womb into your arms in divine timing.
They have a birth plan of their own and it is respectful of us as mothers to honor that.
It is our spiritual act of love.
What Causes Labor To Start?
Researchers have identified two proteins in a fetus' lungs responsible for initiating the labor process, providing potential new targets for preventing preterm birth. They discovered that the proteins SRC-1 and SRC-2 activate genes inside the fetus' lungs near full term, leading to an inflammatory response in the mother's uterus that initiates labor
During late pregnancy, the uterus has an increased number of immune cells (macrophages). Macrophages help fight lung infection by effectively sweeping up any viruses or bacteria that might be present. A protein found in lung surfactant actives the macrophages, which begin to migrate to the uterus wall. Once there, a chemical reaction takes place, stimulating an inflammatory response in the uterus that begins the process of labour. The surfactant protein is called surfactant protein A (SP-A). Babies begin producing SP-A at around 32 weeks and levels increase for the remainder of the pregnancy, until the lungs are mature enough to breathe outside the uterus.
While in the uterus, babies are not breathing air. They receive oxygen via placental blood. While the lungs begin to develop early in pregnancy, the process continues all the way through the pregnancy gestation. Around 24 – 28 weeks of pregnancy, your baby’s lungs begin to produce a substance called surfactant. This substance is made of six types of fats and four proteins, and is critical for your baby to be able to breathe outside the uterus. Surfactant is a soapy-like substance. It coats the inside of the lungs and keeps the air sacs (alveoli) open. The alveoli is where gas exchange in the lungs occurs – oxygen is taken up by the blood and carbon dioxide is released and then exhaled. Without enough surfactant, the alveoli collapse and are almost impossible to open again in normal situations. If the alveoli collapse, they can also stick together and tear. The last stage of lung development begins around 36 weeks of pregnancy, and it continues until your child is about 8 years old. This is called the aveolar phase, when the lungs form millions of alveoli. During this last stage of pregnancy, surfactant production increases as well, preparing the lungs for life outside the uterus.
A review of statistics for countries such as Canada, Australia, United Kingdom and the US, show that a significant number of inductions are occurring before 41 weeks.
The World Health Organization defines a prolonged pregnancy as one that has gone beyond 42 weeks. Considering that estimated due dates are correct 3-5% of the time and most hospitals prefer to induce between 41–42 weeks, it appears that many babies could be at risk of being born before their lungs are fully developed. If induction is absolutely necessary to ensure the safety of mother and baby, the risks of premature birth are often outweighed. If induction is ‘usual practice’ due to convenience or habitual reliance on estimated due dates, it may be worth considering all options, especially the readiness of your baby’s lungs, before agreeing. Sex and orgasm might help prepare you for labor, with the flow of oxytocin and prostaglandins. But ultimately, baby will come when baby is ready. While these last few days (okay… the last few weeks and maybe even months) can feel long, know that your body and your baby are already communicating with each other to time the perfect arrival of baby earth side. - See more at: https://www.bellybelly.com.au/birth/what-causes-labor-to-start/