Figuring Out The Exact Signs Of Labor

2018.02.06 220

There's no way to predict exactly when labor will start. And even when you notice  early signs of labor, your baby's birth could still be days or weeks away. Your body actually starts preparing for labor as much as a month before you give birth, so you may begin to notice new symptoms as your due date approaches.


HappyMom.Life will be telling you these some early signs of labor:


  • Your baby "drops." If this is your first pregnancy, you may feel what's known as "lightening" a few weeks before labor starts, meaning the baby now rests lower in your pelvis. You might feel less pressure just below your ribcage, making it easier to catch your breath.
  • Your contractions become increasingly intense. Unlike Braxton-Hicks contractions, labor contractions grow stronger, longer, and more frequent as they cause your cervix to dilate.
  • Your water breaks. When the fluid-filled amniotic sac surrounding your baby ruptures, fluid leaks from your vagina. And whether it comes out in a large gush or a small trickle, this is a signal that it's time to call your doctor or midwife.

Most women start having regular contractions before their water breaks, but in some cases, the water breaks first. When this happens, labor usually follows soon after.



When Should I Call My Doctor Or Midwife?


Toward the end of your pregnancy, your doctor or midwife will most likely give you clear guidelines on when to let her know that you're having contractions and when you should go to the hospital or birth center.

Call your doctor or midwife right away or head for the hospital if:

  • Your water breaks or you have contractions before 37 weeks because you could be going into preterm labor. Other signs of preterm labor include vaginal bleeding or spotting, unusual vaginal discharge, abdominal pain, pressure in your pelvic area, or low back pain.
  • Your water breaks or you suspect that you're leaking amniotic fluid. Tell your doctor or midwife if it's yellow, brown, or greenish because this signals the presence of meconium, your baby's first stool, and is sometimes a sign of fetal stress. It's also important to let her know if the fluid looks bloody.
  • You notice that your baby is less active.
  • You have vaginal bleeding, constant and severe abdominal pain, or a fever.
  • You start having contractions before 37 weeks or have any other signs of preterm labor.
  • You have severe or persistent headaches, vision changes, intense pain or tenderness in your upper abdomen, abnormal swelling, or any other symptoms of preeclampsia.


Some women assume that various symptoms and discomforts are just part and parcel of being pregnant, while others worry that every physical change spells trouble. Knowing which pregnancy symptoms you should never ignore can help you decide when to call your caregiver.

That said, every pregnancy is different and no list can cover all situations: If you're not sure whether a symptom is serious, or if you're uneasy and just don't feel like yourself, trust your instincts and call your healthcare provider. If there's a problem, you'll get help. If nothing's wrong, you'll be reassured.



Photo Credit: Pinterest



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