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Readers Respond: Have you tried castor oil to induce labor?

Responses: 168


Updated May 30, 2011

Castor oil is often talked about as a natural method of inducing labor. Have you tried it? What was your experience? How did you prepare it? How far along were you? When did you have your baby? Did you have any negative side effects? Would you do it again? Share Your Experience


My Doctor told me if I went a week over I could take two tablespoons of castor oil and have a hot bath started lunch time Saturday over weekend took six tablespoons Castor Oil had lots of hot baths baby was born Sunday night Doctor said the best primary birth he had ever attended baby was 8.2 oz. You can get organic Castor Oil now no taste.
—Guest Eileen

castor oil experience

Took 4tbs CO at 3:05pm didnt feel anything for hrs. Cook dinner and ate at 5pm. Took a nap, up at 7:17pm w/ the runs for about 2hrs. Some cramping . Baby girl moved positions. But here i am 1:15am nothing yet hope to be getting closer. May take another tbs and go back to bed. Hopefully results by the morning.
—Guest jmarie


Im 39 weeks I had 4 table spoons of caster oil 13 hours ago ive had poos alday but now I have nothing apart from the odd tightning and cramps does that mean.caster oil isnt gunna work or is there stil time for me to go into labout
—Guest mummyto4

Castor Oil Induction

I successfully used castor oil to induce #3 with no complications. I had hospital inductions for #4 & #5, the latter being very long and unpleasant. I am booked for induction on my due date (they won't let me go overdue as I am over 40). I am thinking of trying castor oil again. My question is: does castor oil induction increase the risk of excessive bleeding? I ask because I was told that prostaglandin gel can do that.
—Guest Tineyboppa

worked wonders!

I tried two doses of castor oil, 1T each, about three hrs apart. After the second dose, i had a few contractions, water broke, and off things went! No diarrhea at all. It certainly was the grossest thing I have ever eaten. Nothing masks that flavor! Ick.
—Guest Rachel

Tried Before But Only Worked Once

With my 1st I took CO and it started contractions after some loose stools but they eventually stopped and I needed pitocin. 36 hr labor!! I was 3 days over due. Tried it with my 2nd, 3rd and 4th but always a few days before my due dates and only ever had loose stools and a sore behind after! Never tried it with my 5th since he was a vbac and I was worried enough about that labor. I needed pit with all 5 labors though, and they all went over my due date. This baby I'm 37.6 weeks pregnant, 2-3 cm dilated with a soft cervix and enough effacement I can feel baby's head and water bag through my cervix. Last night I took 40 ml of castor oil after my midwife did a membrane sweep. I had bloody show on Sunday and already lost my mucus plug. Loose stools throughout the night and some mild contractions. So took another 40 ml around 830 this morning and already getting the runs again. So don't know if it will work this time either. But overall taking it wasn't that bad... Took it as a shot.
—Guest Stormylove2001

any help???

I'm 38weeks... And I'm trying to have baby because the father is being deployed a week before my due date. .its going to mean so much for him to be here to see his son be born and cut the chord because he's going to be gone for 3 years
—Guest Heather


Took castor oil. Had tons of awful diarrhea. My water broke and I had the baby 4 hours later, but I had a bm with every contraction. Worked fast but would not do it again.
—Guest tash


Just took castor oil how long do it takes before it work
—Guest honey

tried and nothing

I am now 39 weeks pregnant took 5tbls 2 days ago amd unfortunatly it did notging didnt even give me the poops:( ive been having braxton hicks and bad cramps for 2mths now her head is so far down u can feel it when u stick your fingers up me i lost me plug almost a mth ago and am dialted to a 2 and 50% effaced but still nothing guess i have another stubborn little girl:( going to try it again tonight with soda as i hear the fizz helps amd hopefully itll work this time cuz this mommy is deff ready!!!
—Guest kmb

Took it last night

Took Castor oil last night around 9:15 and woke up with contractions 8 minutes apart around 3 am (had one very small bowel movement) and they last til about 7 am then disappeared. So i took a second dose at 9 am (had an immediate but small again b/m) and it is now noon, with nothing. Just waiting, gonna go on a walk then take another dose when I get home if nothing happens.
—Guest kd

38 weeks 4 days

I took 2tbsp of CO around 9:45a.m. yesterday and around 1:10p.m. started having extra bad cramping and for sure thought I was having contractions, but of course I have no idea what a real contraction feels like so I jumped in the shower and it was more comfortable but when I got out I still felt the cramping..they were very sporadic but intense. I layed down with a hot pack and took a nap, when I woke up I felt fine. Still no baby...but I think it was starting to work but I didn't take enough. Is it safe to take more today is my concern..I read that you were suppose to take 2 OZ of CO.
—Guest katey

39 weeks and 3 days

I tried castor oil last night at 9 45 and took one tbs, followed by another tbs an hour after.... Nothing. Then I went to bed and woke up and took another tbs around 11 this morning... And I'm sitting here with nothing still. Any suggestions?
—Guest Lora

yes it does

I was so swelled n unconvertable with my first child so I gave castor oil a try and it worked I took a spoonfull and couple hours later I was in the hospital with strong contraction and the next day I had a 6lb 13oz baby girl via c section who is now 4 yrs old. I did not try it with my second he came out on he's own and now with my third n last I am trying it again hopefully its a go for me again can't wait to meet my lil guy :)
—Guest jo

nothing happened

Im 40wks&2days i took 30ml of castor oil. the baby moved a bit and i had slight cramps after about an hour of taking. but nothing else. kinda disappointed cause everyone hyped it up as a miracle way to induce :-(
—Guest Kayla

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