Are you experiencing painless and irregular contractions as you are approaching your due date? Do you want to learn how to rule out a false alarm? If you can relate to any of these situations, then you must give this post a read.
As you approach your delivery date, your contractions will become more rhythmic and painful, and there are chances you will experience a false labor. Braxton Hicks contractions help the body prepare for true labor. It helps to soften and thin the cervix. So how can you tell whether it is a true labor or a false one? Read on to know the signs of false labor and how to differentiate between false and true labor.
Signs Of False Labor:
Here are a few signs that can help you identify false labor:
- Irregular contractions
- A feeling of tightening in the abdomen
- No progression of labor while walking
- No evidence of blood
- No rupturing of membranes
- No breaking of water
Difference Between False And True Labor:
Sometimes, it can be hard to differentiate b
|Signs||True Labor||False Labor|
|Frequency Of Contractions||True labor contractions may be irregular at first, but over time, they occur at regular intervals.||False labor contractions are unpredictable and irregular. It can interfere with sleep and can make you cranky and lethargic.|
|Intensity Of Contractions||The frequency and intensity of contractions increase with time no matter what you do to ease it.||False labor contraction subsides when you start or stop an activity or change your position.|
|Length Of Contractions||True labor contractions last for more than 30 seconds and get progressively longer.||False labor contractions vary in length.|
|Center Of Contractions||In true labor, the contraction starts in the lower back and radiates through the abdomen.||In a false labor, the contraction centers in your lower abdomen and groin.|
|Strength Of Contractions||The contractions in true labor get stronger as time progresses.||Contractions in false labor do not increase in strength over time. On the contrary, these contractions are strong at first but become weaker gradually.|
|Change in Cervix||In true labor, the cervix becomes thinner, softer and dilated.||False labor does not cause progressive dilation of the cervix.|
Tips To Ease A False Labor:
Braxton Hicks contractions are perfectly normal and may start at any time during the third trimester. If it is making you feel uncomfortable then:
- Take a walk.
- Change your position
- Take some rest
- Drink plenty of water
- Relax the body by taking a warm bath
- Go for a massage
When To Seek Medical Help?
It is important to contact the doctor if you have:
- A vaginal bleeding and you lose bright red blood.
- Continuous leaking of fluid or water break.
- A drastic change in the baby’s movement, you may feel less than 6 to 10 movements in an hour.
Before 37 weeks, if you notice any sign of labor, contact your midwife or doctor right away to rule out the possibility of preterm labor. After the 37th week, you can sit out the contractions at home unless your doctor advises otherwise. If you are not sure about labor, then call your doctor or midwife. They should be available anytime to discuss your concerns and find out whether your contractions are true or not.
Did you experience false labor? How did you deal with it? Let us know in the comments section.