So they come to the end of 9 months of waiting, and every pregnant woman wonders what first symptoms will help her understand that childbirth begins, at what point to call an ambulance. Doctors talk about signs of a beginning labor activity in the mother and the fetus.
The harbingers of the imminent onset of labor in women
After 38 weeks, pregnancy is considered full-term. Before childbirth, the normal beginning of which is considered to be any moment between 38 and 42 weeks, in the body of women the level of hormones responsible for bearing the fetus decreases and the level of those that stimulate labor is significantly increased.
Hormonal changes affect both the physical and psychological state of women. The presence of several of the signs listed below indicates the imminent onset of labor. The first symptoms may appear a few weeks before giving birth.
One of the main symptoms of the approaching birth is the omission of the abdomen, which occurs due to a more dense entry of the fetal head into the pelvic ring. Many women say that it has become easier for them to sit and breathe, heartburn has passed. Obstetricians note prolapse of the fundus. Although for most this happens in a few weeks, for some women the abdomen drops right before birth.
Very often, Brexton-Hicks contractions (precursor, false, training) occur to train the body before childbirth. They can be quite long and intense. Unlike true ones, false contractions are not regular, do not increase in intensity and duration, often resemble menstrual pains, usually stop if a woman relaxes or takes a warm bath. If you were able to fall asleep, it’s definitely training fights.
Many women experience nausea, loose stools, and even vomiting in the prenatal period. According to doctors, these signs indicate the process of opening the cervix. However, you must be careful to constantly drink water in small quantities to prevent dehydration, because these symptoms can accompany poisoning and intestinal infection.
In some cases, women who are in the last stages of pregnancy may experience more frequent urination, which is due to increased uterine pressure on the lower abdomen, in particular the bladder. In this regard, edema disappears. It is also believed that this indicates the deliverance of the body from excess, purification before childbirth. Those women who are regularly weighed may notice a weight loss of 1-2 kilograms.
Some of the pregnant women have lower back pain and lower abdominal pressure.
The passage of the mucous plug can occur both immediately before childbirth, and 2 weeks before them. Mucus is located in the cervical canal and protects the fetus from infection. When it stands out, the child continues to be reliably protected by the amniotic membrane.
How to understand that it was the mucous plug that stood out? It is transparent, colorless, may be streaked with blood; amount – about 20 ml. If the cork has departed more than 2 weeks before the PDD (estimated delivery date) or the cork was painted in some color, you should seek medical help, otherwise there is no reason for concern
The psychological sign of an approaching birth is the “nesting instinct”, when a woman tries to stay at home as much as possible, choosing a cozy corner, or cleans, erases, strokes, preparing a “nest” for her child. Here you should not overdo it with physical activity and save energy for the upcoming birth.
All the first manifestations of the approach of childbirth listed above do not require immediate medical attention, but in case of any doubt, it is better not to be shy and consult a doctor.
Symptoms from the fetus
Usually, a few days before giving birth, the baby becomes less active: he has grown up, and it is increasingly difficult for him to move in a cramped space. However, if a woman feels less than 10 series of movements per day, it is necessary to consult a doctor to exclude the risk of fetal hypoxia.
The main signs of a beginning labor
The main sign of the development of labor activity is the development of contractions, that is, an increase in their intensity, an increase in the duration and a decrease in the intervals between them. The first contractions usually appear as pulling pains in the lower abdomen or lower back, lasting several seconds at intervals of 15-20 minutes. Fights are often accompanied by chills. It is not worth worrying with the appearance of chills, this is one of the body’s natural reactions before childbirth.
Amniotic fluid flow is the second reliable sign of the onset of labor. The fluid should be light or yellowish, colored water may indicate oxygen starvation of the child in the womb or infection. The rupture of the amniotic membrane can occur both immediately before childbirth, and many hours before them.
When to call an ambulance?
- If you have lost water, then you need to immediately go to the maternity ward: the longer the child is without water, the higher the likelihood of complications.
- With regular progressive contractions, when the interval between them is 7-10 minutes. If you go to the hospital for more than 30 minutes, it is better to call an ambulance without waiting for such a short interval.
- If there are bleeding.
The symptoms of the onset of labor are the same in nulliparous and multiparous women, however, in the second birth the flow is usually more rapid than if the first birth, therefore, when signs of labor are already present in women who have given birth, it is better to go to a medical institution right away.
Easy delivery and health to you and the baby!