Being Induced: What You Can Expect

When you’re pregnant, you’ll likely create your ideal birth plan — you’ll go into labor, head to the hospital or your midwife, push through some contractions, and voila!  You’ll be holding your sweet bundle in your arms some amount of time later. But sometimes, things outside of your control can cause things to deviate from your birth plan.

This can be that Baby comes early, arrives via C-section, or maybe isn’t coming at all!  Before you know it, words like “induction” start getting thrown around. Finding out you’ll be induced to start labor can be overwhelming and a little unnerving…but it doesn’t have to be!  It’s important for expecting mamas to know what being induced means, why it happens, and what they can expect when and if the time comes!


What does ‘Being Induced’ Mean?

Put simply, being induced just means that your body is being medically pushed to go into labor.  This can happen for a number of reasons. Typically, the reasons are medical:

  • Baby is at risk for gestational diabetes.  This can happen around the 24 week mark, but the longer that bun is in the oven, the higher the risk of diabetes.  Your doctor will be able to monitor for this and keep you updated.
  • You are at risk of high blood pressure.  High blood pressure is a common symptom of preeclampsia and eclampsia.  These are very serious conditions for expecting mothers, so if the symptoms are indicating you are experiencing either, induction may be diagnosed.

While it’s usually medical and probably should be in most instances, there can be a personal reason for being induced:

  • You’ve been pregnant past your due date and are ready to push Baby out!  


Whatever the reason, you should never be induced before week 39, unless there is a serious medical condition.  All that being said, if you have any questions or concerns about why you’re being induced, never hesitate to speak up and ask your doctor!


What Can I Expect?

So, an induction has been planned, and you’re getting ready to meet that little one!  What can you expect from this whole experience? Being induced varies from mama to mama, but you can expect a few of the following scenarios:



  • No food.  This can be the worst sentence for a pregnant mama!  But an induction can cause nausea and vomiting, and there can be reactions to the medications used to start labor.  Your doctor will likely tell you how long you’ll be unable to eat for, and they’ll let you know when the ban has been lifted!
  • Being induced can increase your odds for a C-Section.  You will be closely monitored by your doctor and team to ensure you get the best care possible — just know a C-Section is not inevitable when you are induced, but it can increase your chances.
  • You might have a small pill placed in your vagina.  This will happen if your cervix does not appear to be softening and preparing for labor, and the pill will help to move that process along.  Until your cervix is ready, the induction cannot occur.
  • Pitocin will be administered.  Once your cervix is ready to begin labor, you will be hooked up to your dose of Pitocin.  This is what will cause your labor to start. Be prepared for increased contractions for each upped dosage of Pitocin.
  • Contractions may feel stronger.  This can happen because your body is not easing into the process of labor (meaning breaks between contractions), and instead is being pushed into labor, causing more frequent and intense transactions.  Don’t be afraid to ask for an epidural or other assistance if you need it, Mama.
  • It can take time.  Many mamas go into their induction appointment expecting to be holding baby within an hour or so, but it can take some time, and you may be waiting until the next day for Baby. It all depends on your body!



Other Things to Consider

Now that you have a general overview of why it’s happening and what to expect from it, here are a few other takeaways to help you through your experience!


  • Let go of your plans.  Hanging on to your original birth plan and how it’s not happening can make your entire experience more unpleasant.  Instead, accept the change, and get ready to meet that little one!
  • Stay positive.  Remember, Mama, your health and Baby’s are the most important thing here.  Once they arrive, it will be all that matters!



We couldn’t be happier for you and your new arrival here at Bump Boxes, Mama!  Enjoy all those snuggles in your future!