Signs of Labor | When It’s Time To Head To The Hospital | NextMamas.
It’s normal to wonder about labor signs and symptoms. After all, this is the moment you’ve been waiting for! Some women report that labor c0ntracti0ns feel like strong menstrual cramps that come and go with increasing intensity. Others say the pain is more extreme and feels like lower back pressure that comes in waves.
The duration of labor varies from woman to woman, but most first-time moms can expect to be in labor for 12 to 24 hours. The good news is that there are some definite signs that labor is beginning, so you’ll know when it’s time to head to the hospital or birthing center.
What Is Labor?
Labor is the process of childbirth, which starts with contractions of the uterus and cervical dilation. The aim of labor is to deliver the baby safely. The process usually takes place over a period of several hours and may be aided by medications such as painkillers.
You know you are going into labor when:
1.You Can Feel The Baby Dropping Lower And Definite Pressure On Your Diaphragm
One of the major signs that labor is approaching is when the baby “drops.” This is actually referred to as lightning. Lightening occurs when the baby’s head moves down into the pelvis. This happens because the baby is getting ready to be born. The head dropping into the pelvis makes more room in the abdomen, which can make it easier for the baby to be born.
2.Your Nesting Instincts Start Taking Over Before Pregnancy
Many women experience a strong desire to nest as they approach to labor. This may manifest itself in different ways for different women, but often includes physical preparations for parenthood such as deep-cleaning the nursery and setting up baby gear. nesting is thought to be a way of preparing both physically and emotionally for the demands of caring for a new child.
3.You Go Through A Bloody Show
The bloody show is one of the signs that labor is about to begin. It refers to vaginal discharge that contains blood, which occurs when the mucus plug that has been blocking the cervix loosens or dislodges. This can happen a few days before labor begins, or it may happen when labor is already underway. The bloody show is a good sign that labor is progressing normally.
4.You Start Experiencing Back Labor
Back labor is a common sign of labor. It is characterized by intense back pain, especially when the baby’s head is against your lower back. This pain can be caused by the baby’s head pressing on the nerves in your back. It can also be caused by the pressure of the baby’s head on your spine. Back labor is when the baby’s back is up against your spine during labor.
It can be very painful and is more common when the baby is “sunny-side up” (facing your abdomen). However, research has not proven that this position is more likely to cause back labor. If you are in back labor, you may want to ask your doctor or midwife to massage your lower back or use a heating pad on your lower back to help ease the pain.
5.Other symptoms follow soon after- looser joints, frequent bowel movements, belly pain
Besides cramps and increased back pain, your joints seem to feel loose, and you see yourself going to take a dump more often than before. Loose st00l or diarrhea is also a sign of labor. As you approach your due date, you may notice that your joints feel a bit more relaxed. This is perfectly normal and is simply your body’s way of preparing for labor. The extra space created by the relaxed joints allows your baby to descend into the birth canal more easily. So if you start to feel a little less tightness in your joints, don’t worry – it’s just nature doing its thing! Just as your joints relax, so do your muscles, and even your muscles in the rectum get a little bit looser, and that’s when you experience pre-labor diarrhea, which just like other symptoms, is absolutely normal.
6.And Finally, Your Water Breaks
What happens when the water breaks? Is it like the movies where the female character’s water breaks during a court hearing or a romantic dinner? Well, it could be sometimes. But this scenario is quite unlikely. For most women, their water breaks after other labor symptoms have already begun. It usually happens in small leaks or a big gush. But you won’t necessarily lose all the flu1d at once. But when it does, it means that your baby is on its way!
Author: Dr. Iram Gill
Dr. Iram Gill is an MBBS doctor by profession and a Content Writer by passion. She is a mother as well and has observed the health-related challenges faced by mothers and babies. She wants to play her part in increasing access and support for breastfeeding and maternal health problems.