What to do when you go past your due date

What to do when you go past your due date

Going past your due date can be frustrating, but fear not, Lizzie Catt has an action plan

 overduedate

You may be collapsed in a snoring heap, having an inappropriate pregnancy dream about Gary Barlow, when the clock strikes midnight on your due date. But if you’re awake, rubbing your cramping calves and glugging Gaviscon, you’ll almost certainly feel a little buzz of excitement as you wait for that first twinge. However, with most babies actually arriving within the 38- to 42-week window, you may find you have a little longer to wait. Here’s what to expect.

DAY 1

If you’re still pregnant on your due date, the midwife will offer you a membrane sweep. She inserts a finger into your cervix to separate the baby’s amniotic sac from the cervix, and this releases prostaglandins – hormones that will hopefully trigger labour. If the cervix hasn’t started ‘ripening’ – something
 you previously thought only happened to fruit and Camembert – she may not do anything, or may try to stretch the cervix. It’s a bit uncomfortable and messy, but who cares? After 40 long weeks, the baby is cooked, your hospital bag’s in the car and it’s time to go, go, go!

DAY 2

After a day spent checking for traffic alerts on all the possible routes to the hospital, you went to sleep with your shoes and bag neatly positioned by the door. But now you’ve woken up in your own bed, and still very much with child. Never mind – might as well lie in and check Facebook. ‘You had that baby yet? Push! LOL’ writes everyone you’ve ever met.

DAY 3

An NCT friend, due a week after you, 
has her baby. You have a bit of a cry and tearfully proposition your other half over your gigantic bump with the chat-up line, ‘But the midwife said semen might help!’ He suggests going for a walk.

Michelle Lyne, the Royal College of Midwives’ professional advisor for education, advises, ‘Sex can work, and especially if the woman has an orgasm. That’s because prostaglandins are released and this softens the cervix; and there are also prostaglandins in semen. Oxytocin is also released – it’s the natural form of Syntocinon, the drug put in the drip for the induction of labour. If a woman has an orgasm, she’s more likely to start to have contractions.’

To read the full 14 day action plan, grab your copy of the September issue, out August 1st

RELATED ARTICLES

Related Articles

5 common signs of postnatal depression
You and your body
5 common signs of postnatal depression
5 common signs of postnatal depression Becoming a mother brings with it a...
Win a baby changing bag from Mummy & Little Me
Win
Win a baby changing bag from Mummy & Little Me
Win a baby changing bag from Mummy & Little Me Enter this fab competition...
First aid first: how to help your child before going to A&E
Safety & First aid
First aid first: how to help your child before going to A&E
First aid first: how to help your child before going to A&E British Red...
Win £250 to spend on children's clothing at Rachelriley.co.uk
Win
Win £250 to spend on children's clothing at Rachelriley.co.uk
Win £250 to spend on children's clothing at Rachelriley.co.uk Enter this fab...

email block

tips-for-pregnancy-in-your-20s-30s-and-40sPregnancy

Tips for pregnancy in your 20s, 30s and 40s

There's rarely a perfect time to have a baby, but there are tips for all ages here, says Ali Horsfall.
what-can-you-do-about-gender-disappointmentPregnancy

What can you do about gender disappointment?

Gender disappointment is common and certainly nothing to be ashamed of. Here are some ways to deal with finding out...
21-amazing-facts-about-your-pelvic-floorPregnancy

21 amazing facts about your pelvic floor

It's one of your most important muscles. Find out more about your pelvic floor.
win-strollerbuddy-buggy-accessories-from-dreambaby-worthWin

Win Strollerbuddy® buggy accessories from Dreambaby®

We've teamed up with Dreambaby to offer five lucky Gurgle fans the chance to win three fun and practical stroller...
win-a-baby-changing-bag-from-mummy-little-meWin

Win a baby changing bag from Mummy & Little Me

We've teamed up with Mummy & Little Me to offer one lucky Gurgle fan the chance to win a stylish...
win-250-to-spend-on-clothing-at-rachelriley-co-ukWin

Win £250 to spend on children's clothing at Rachelriley.co.uk

We're offering four lucky Gurgle fans the chance to £250 to spend on Rachel Riley baby clothes. Enter this fab...