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There are a lot of well-known signs that labor is about to start, and some of the signs can be different depending on whether it is a first pregnancy or not. Here, we will take a look at 5 lesser-known signs that labor might be about to start. When you start to notice a few of these signs, it’s time to call the midwife and make sure your hospital bag is packed and ready to go!
This is probably one of the best-known signs of labor, well-documented in Hollywood movies. However, only around 15% of women experience their waters breaking before active labor begins.
If your water breaks after 37 weeks of pregnancy and you’re not already in active labor, there’s a very good chance it will begin soon. If it doesn’t, it’s best to call your doctor as some feel it is best to induce labor if it doesn’t start within a few hours of the waters breaking. This is because there is a greater chance of infection after the amniotic fluid has been released. If your waters break at 36 weeks pregnant or before, consult your doctor straight away to determine the best course of action.
Your Pet Starts Behaving Differently
If you have a pet, particularly a dog or a cat, you might have noticed they behaved differently at the beginning of your pregnancy. They might have actually ‘known’ you were pregnant before you did! If your dog or cat is becoming clingier and won’t leave your side, it could well be a sign that labor is imminent.
Back Pain Becomes More Severe
Many women experience lower back pain in the later stages of pregnancy. However, depending on the position of the baby, back pain could be felt instead of, or as well as, abdominal contractions. The pain can come and go, and gradually becomes more intense as labor progresses, in much the same way as abdominal contractions.
You Stop Gaining Weight (or Even Lose Weight)
Women steadily gain weight throughout pregnancy as the baby grows. However, if you have been weighing in weekly, and haven’t gained for the last week or two, it’s a good sign that your baby has reached their birthweight and is ready to arrive any day now! You might even find you have lost some weight, which can be caused by decreasing levels of amniotic fluid.
Whilst the production of the hormone Relaxin is important in preparing the body for labor and birth, it can have some unpleasant side effects. In the day or two before labor begins, some women can experience diarrhea as the body ‘loosens up’ and prepares for the onset of labor. Clumsiness can also be a side effect of increased levels of Relaxin production, so don’t be worried if you notice yourself bumping into things or dropping things, it’s a good sign baby is on the way!
About Emily The Blogger
Emily is new to the world of blogging and her blog Whooopsadaisy.com, which is all about baby products, toddler toys and helping parents seeking to know about baby safety, was inspired by her daughter Daisy.