What do Contractions Feel like?

1,782 Views Updated: 04 Aug 2017
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What do Contractions Feel like?

First-time mothers tend to look at the day of delivery with excitement and a lot of anxiety. The thing that makes them nervous is going into labor. Every to-be mother has wondered what contractions must feel like during her pregnancy and watched out for every sign of labor to be cautious.

In case you are worried about when will you go into labor and how the contractions will feel like, here is a guide to the different kinds of pressure and cramps pregnant women undergo before and during labor.

#1. False labor

Contractions start to happen right after four months of pregnancy, the uterus starts to contract and relax, and it is no different than us flexing our forearms. Contractions feel like cramps, and you would feel a mild pressure building in your uterus. This type of contraction is also known as Braxton-Hicks contractions and is usually infrequent and irregular. They are mostly painless but can be a bit uncomfortable. The best way to deal with such false labor contractions is to drink water and try taking a nap preferably to your left side. Taking adequate rest can relieve a lot of pregnancy related stress and pain.

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(Image Courtesy: Virginia's Women Centre)

#2. Preterm Labor Contraction

If you have regular contractions before 37 weeks, it can be suggestive of premature labor. Contractions before labor happen in a pattern, if you are feeling them occurring every 10-12 minutes, the chances are that you are in preterm labor. Your abdomen will feel hard on touching, and you will also suffer from a dull backache, a pressure in your pelvis and pressure in your abdomen.

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(Image Courtesy: Darbaustista)

#3. Labor Contractions

When contractions happen, the labor becomes hard but in-between contractions, the uterus relaxes and the abdomen becomes soft. Contractions are different for every woman and for each time anyone gets pregnant. Labor contractions cause a dull ache in the back and also the lower abdomen, along with pressure in the pelvis.

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(Image Courtesy: American Pregnancy Association)

Signs Of Labor

Going into labor differs for every woman; some show clear signs while others do not. The first sign of going into labor is interestingly called ‘lightning,' which means that the baby has settled or lowered into the pelvis. It can occur a few weeks or even hours before labor. 

Since the uterus is right on top of the bladder; you will feel the need to urinate more. The other is the discharge of the mucus which collects at the cervix during pregnancy. As the cervix expands, the mucus is released into the vagina and can look clear, pink, or slightly bloody. Labor begins soon after the discharge of the mucus plug, but at times the discharge also happens a few weeks prior to labor.

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(Image Courtesy: Healthline)

Are you an expecting mother or do you know someone who will soon be going into labor?Share your feedback with us on this topic using the comment box below.

(Featured Image Courtesy: iBreast Care)

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