9 Old Wives Tales About Inducing Labor That You Shouldn't Believe

Ad failed to load

If you're at the end of your pregnancy with no signs of labor starting, you may have begun the search for ways you can start the process at home. For generations, women have advised pregnant mamas on all manner of techniques to make their baby arrive. But how do you know if it's worth your time, energy, and taste buds? Although it's safe to say most at home methods won't hurt you, there are some old wives tales about inducing labor that you shouldn't believe, because chances are you're going to end up disappointed.

The reasons old wives tales keep being handed down, is that for some women there has been a connection. You grandmother swears that she went into labor with your mom just hours after drinking some castor oil. But your mom and all your aunts tried it, and didn't deliver for days. All it takes is a few people to swear that a certain method worked for them, and the argument becomes pretty convincing.

Whether or not you choose to try a home induction method that is considered a myth is up to you. But before you put all your hope in one idea, make sure to consider these nine myths about inducing labor before you start swallowing nasty potions.

Ad failed to load

1Eating Pineapple


Anyone ever suggested guzzling down a pineapple or two to get your labor moving? This popular old wives tale is tied to the power of the enzyme bromelain, which are found in pineapple. " It’s believed that when pregnant women eat pineapple, bromelain softens the connective tissue of the cervix, bringing on labour," according to Today Parents. However, there is no research to support this claim and connect eating pineapple with the start of labor.

2Sipping Some Red Raspberry Leaf Tea


If you were considering chugging gallons of tea to induce labor, don't bother. Although the vitamins in this tea are nutritious, red raspberry leaf tea will not bring on labor, as Ask Baby's website pointed out.

3Drinking Castor Oil


Smelling castor oil is enough to keep me from drinking it, but even though some mom's swear by this method, it's simply a myth. According to What To Expect, although one small study showed some women who drank castor oil went into labor within 24 hours, half of the women did not start labor. Unfortunately, castor oil causes more diarrhea than contractions.

Ad failed to load

4Eating Spicy Food


As much as you love a good plate full of chicken wings, those delicious nibbles won't help kick your labor into motion. When it comes to spicy food and induction, The Bump pointed out, "nothing has been proven yet, except a good chance of heartburn."



If you're up for a walk near the end of your pregnancy, but all means, go for it — just don't expect those strolls to make your baby come any faster. According to Baby Med, although walking can help your baby move down into the birth canal, walking is not a way to bring on labor.

6Getting An Enema


Please do not put yourself through this one if you are thinking about trying to induce your labor at home. As Dr. Jonathan Shaffir, OB-GYN professor told Easy Baby Life, having an enema to induce labor is a myth.

Ad failed to load

7A Bumpy Car Ride


Going off-road won't feel good on your pregnant belly, and it certainly won't bring the results of labor beginning. According to Baby Center, there is no proof that taking a bumpy car ride will induce labor. So save yourself the motion sickness and stay on the pavement.

8Having Accupuncture


Although this can be a relaxing treat, your baby's birthday won't come any sooner because of it. " [A] recent study out of Denmark found no difference in spontaneous labor between women at 41 weeks treated with acupuncture and those not treated," the website for The Bump reported.

9Drinking Red Wine


You might be ready to get your hands on some wine after nine months of pregnancy, but before you start poppin' bottles, take this bit of caution. "Drinking alcohol in the later stages of pregnancy has the opposite effect most women intend for it to have," as Parents magazine reported. The wine can actually stop labor from happening.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

The Entire Family Can Enjoy These Movies & Shows Coming To Netflix In June

It's just one of those sad facts of life: every month, shows and movies vanish from Netflix, their varied excitements no longer at your fingertips. But luckily the streaming service is always prepared to fill that content void with lots of new things…
By Megan Walsh

The Reason Why Babies Smile At You Will Seriously Make You Smile

Whether you're currently the recipient of your own baby's sweet smiles or you just seem to be a magnet for baby grins in general, you might find yourself wondering why babies are always smiling at you. Sure, you could be a 'smile whisperer' but scien…
By Kate Miller

8 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say That, Yes, You Are Their Favorite

For a baby to show a preference for a specific person is not only normal, but an essential part of their development. Babies need to form strong attachments to their caregivers for their emotional, social, and physical wellbeing. Usually, but not alw…
By Kimmie Fink

10 Reasons Why I Won't Apologize For Giving My Toddler A Pacifier

My first child had no interest in a pacifier. I tried a couple times to get him to take one, but he always spat them out and gave me an incredulous, judgmental look. But my second? It was love at first suckle. And after a while, the incredulous, judg…
By Jamie Kenney

Being A Dog Parent Prepared Me For Having A Baby, Really

I’ve always wanted kids; I was never as sure about raising a puppy. Then I spent six months living with someone who brought home an eight-week-old golden retriever puppy, and I see no way to make it out of that experience claiming not to love dogs. I…
By Heather Caplan

20 Of The Most Popular Unisex Names Of All Time, That You'll Be Hearing More Of For Sure

You might think of unisex names as a fairly recent trend, but the truth is these versatile monikers have been commonly used throughout history (well, some more commonly than others). That's why the team over at Names.org recently compiled a list of t…
By Jacqueline Burt Cote

How To Have A Date Night With No Babysitter, Because It's Easier Than You Think

After having children, many couples feel that their love lives immediately go out the window, but it's so important to make your romantic life a priority so both you and your partner can be the best versions of yourselves you can be. As we all know, …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

9 Ways Baby No. 3 Made My Family Feel Complete

My husband and I decided to have another baby right after we got married and, well, we had no idea what we were getting into. I got pregnant right away, endured a high-risk pregnancy, and, before I knew it, my third baby had arrived. Together, we emb…
By Steph Montgomery

8 Stereotypes About New Dads That Are *Totally* True

Much like new mothers, new fathers have a lot on their plate. Parenting can be scary and complex, especially at first and regardless of your gender. People want to do right by their kids, after all. And since all new parents are a hot mess, dads are …
By Priscilla Blossom

8 Differences Between Being Pregnant In Your 20s Vs 30s, According To Science

Whether you're planning a pregnancy, or just thinking about your future family, it's typical to think about things like child-spacing, how many kids you want, and when to start trying to conceive. When making your pro/con list, you might also conside…
By Steph Montgomery

16 Moms Share Remedies For Their Most Intense Chocolate Cravings During Pregnancy

For better or worse, pregnancy is usually synonymous with odd cravings. Sure, there are the stereotypical combos like pickles and ice cream that plague gestating women the world over, but there are other mind-boggling combinations, too, including but…
By Candace Ganger

Putting Sunscreen On Your Kid Doesn't Have To Be A Fight — Here's How To Do It

I am almost translucent, so me and sunscreen are basically besties at this point. Even though my children are beautifully deep brown thanks to my husband's genetics, I still slather them like biscuits being buttered because I refuse to take risks wit…
By Cat Bowen

19 Moms Share The Way They Cured Their Pregnancy Comfort Food Cravings

I was obnoxiously sick during the first trimester with, "lucky" for me, both of my pregnancies. For the first three months I lived on saltines, lemonade, and fresh bread. Once I was able to eat, however, all I wanted was savory and sweet comfort food…
By Dina Leygerman

8 Fascinating Facts About Babies Born In May, The Luckiest Month Of All

The height of all things fresh and springy, May is an excellent month to have a baby. It's a time of growth, graduations, and outdoor celebrations. And these fascinating facts about May babies will give you more reasons than ever to appreciate childr…
By Lindsay E. Mack

I Used To Judge Formula-Feeding Moms — Until I Became One

The other patrons in the hip Brooklyn restaurant probably couldn’t care less what I was feeding my baby, but I’ll always remember the shame I felt as I quickly mixed up his bottle of formula in front of them. I admitted to my childless friend that I …
By Katherine Martinelli

7 White Lies It’s Necessary To Tell To Keep Your Relationship Healthy

Telling lots of lies typically isn't associated with a healthy, strong, lasting relationship, and that's still certainly true, but not all lies are exactly the same. Though you've probably heard from someone at least once or twice that the lie they t…
By Lauren Schumacker

The Skinny Jeans That Saved Me Postpartum

Accepting my post-pregnancy body is hands-down one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. It’s something that I still work on every single day. During my first pregnancy, I was 20 years old, so I managed to bounce back quickly. In fact, I dropp…
By Allison Cooper

7 Ways Your Baby Is Trying To Say They Feel Safe

In those first weeks of new motherhood, it can feel like you need an interpreter for your newborn. With their limited means of communication, figuring out what message your baby is trying to get across to you can be a challenge. With time, however, y…
By Kimmie Fink

Here's Why Dogs Are Obsessed With Babies' Poop, According To Science

Most family dogs seem to understand babies, and they're more than happy to make friends with the newest member of the pack. It's adorable... for the most part and until you go to change your little one's diaper. Suddenly, you're wondering why dogs ar…
By Lindsay E. Mack

6 Signs You're Meant To Have A Big Age Gap Between Kids

There's a five year age difference between my two children, to the day. Their age gap wasn't planned but, for a variety of reasons, works well for our family. And since I was so focused on having a second baby, I totally overlooked the signs that wou…
By Candace Ganger

My Dog Knew I Was Pregnant Before My Family Did

Growing up, I was 100 percent sure I'd be a mom one day. To a dog, that is. My baby plans came later. And once my husband and I were sure we wanted both a dog and a baby, we'd add to our joint dog-and-baby name list over Sunday brunch or on date nigh…
By Melissa Mills