14 Myths and Truths About Early Labor
Mommies to be are bombarded with a lot of information about what they should expect when they are pregnant, what labor and childbirth are like and what symptoms they need to look out for. However, the fact remains that pregnancy and childbirth turns out to be a vastly different experience for every woman in its unique way. Even if a woman has followed her doctor’s orders to the tee, she may still go into early labor. There are some fairly common myths surrounding early labor that you shouldn’t pay heed to though there are also some common truths that you need to be mindful of.
Myth #1: You need to head to the hospital at the first sign of labor
Most experts believe that when you find yourself going into premature labor, you should immediately call your OB/GYN. However, you don’t need to rush to the hospital at the first sign of labor even if the contractions have started before your term is over. If you explain your symptoms to the doctor and he advises you to wait till the contractions are closer apart, you should wait it out before you leave for the hospital.
Myth #2: Contractions are always extremely painful
Contractions are painful. But for some women, these are barely more painful or noticeable than menstrual cramps. If you find yourself experiencing something even closely resembling contractions, you should be timing them for frequency and intensity and call your doctor as soon as possible.
Myth #3: Contractions are the only sign of early labor
Some women can go into labor without experiencing labor pain. The fact holds true painwomen who have a hereditary condition that allows them to experience relatively painless labor or women that have given birth before. Some women may even be dilated by many inches before they even begin feeling the first signs of labor.
Myth #4: Your water will always break when you’re going into early labor
You may feel like going into labor would be just like they show on TV and in movies. However, the breaking of water isn’t necessarily the beginning of early labor. Some women’s water may not break till they are well into the process of delivering.
Myth #5: Epidurals are painful
Epidural is a regional anesthesia which blocks pain in certain part of the body. They are used as pain relief to ease the labour pains. It may cause a bit of discomfort but it’s not of epic proportion and certainly less than the labour pain. Trust your doctor to do what’s the best for pain.
Myth #6: Broad hips make labour easy
well, as long as sexiness goes..broad hips are at the top! but, making labor easy is not the kinda magic they create. Pushing the baby has not something that depends on the outward structure of your body. Some women may have wide hips but the pelvis might still be narrow.
Myth #7 : Losing the mucus plug means you are going into labor
It’s just that gooey glop blocking your cervix that your body sheds. But, really it means that your cervix is softening, not that you are immediatly going into labor. Your, labour might be hours or weeks away. Some women lose the plug piece by piece and others like popping a cork and most do not even notice.
Myth #8 : A c-section is saves you the pain of labor pains during vaginal birth
The only difference between the pain that both bring is that vaginal birth means that you endure the pain then and there ie. during the child birth; while c-section brings post-surgery pain. In short, there is no way around the pain. This way or that the mommas have to endure the pain. But, there are some women who take remarkably well to c-section/
Truth #1: Signs and symptoms of labor vary for every woman
Signs and symptoms of early labor are vastly different for each woman. Water breaking, mild cramping, lower abdominal or pelvic pressure, change in vaginal discharge, etc. are all very common with women that are going into labor before full term has been reached.
Truth #2: Contractions shouldn’t be ignored
Even if you aren’t even close to full term in your pregnancy, you should take contractions seriously. Even if they are relatively mild, you should immediately call your doctor to confirm whether you need to get to a hospital or not. Even if your contractions aren’t painful, you should take them seriously.
Truth #3: You may urinate and excrete during labor
They don’t really show women pooping and pissing themselves during childbirth but the excess pressure exerted on the urethra and intestines during labor can cause you to urinate and excrete.
Truth #4 : Water helps
Water does help! Be it early labor or normal labor, staying hydrated is a must. Grab a glass of water as soon as you think that you are going into labor. Being hydrated increases your energy output by 30% and god knows how you require that energy to ride out the contractions. Ice chips and clear liquids can also help so be sure to pack them in while leaving for hospital.
Truth#5 : Always right to bank cord blood
It is never too early or too late to bank cord blood. It is a growing trend now to bank the cord blood so that it can be used as a source of stem cells in case of some future injury or disease. We would in fact highly recommend this practice. Just make sure that the to-be-mummy’s provider is aware that she plans on banking the cord.
Truth #6 : Do not fight gravity
Well, it’s true. Why shouldn’t you take advantage of nature’s own force? Stay upright as long as you can. Keep a slow stroll or or just sit upright but don’t just lie down as long as you can resist doing that.