“In modern Western culture, most women know about induction of labour before they even become pregnant. They know that it is suggested when it is felt that it would be safer for the baby to be born than to stay inside its mother, and I suspect many women know that one of the main reasons for recommending induction of labour is because pregnancy has lasted for a certain number of weeks and the baby is perceived to be ‘overdue’. Many women will know a good few other women who have had their births medically induced, and so they are likely to know that other reasons are sometimes given for this. These reasons include that the woman is older than average, that her waters have broken early, that her pregnancy was conceived by IVF and/or that she has a health problem or condition which if felt to necessitate the bringing on of her labour.
But this is not the whole story, and there are many, many other aspects to the decision about whether or not to have their labour medicallty induced. I have recently updated my book, Inducing Labour: making informed decisions, which you may find helpful if this is something you are considering. I also have an article which you might like to read: Ten things I wish every woman knew about induction of labour.
If you’re a midwife or birth worker who would like to learn more about this area and discuss the issues with like-minded people, I’d love to welcome you to one of my online courses, including post-term-pregnancy: exploring evidence, inspiring confidence or you can keep up with my research postings via my free updates and monthly Birth Information Update.