Are you in labour?
This is the million dollar question for every pregnant woman, especially if this is your first baby.
Here are some guidelines to help determine when it is time to head to the hospital or call your midwife.
Early labour is part of the first stage of labour where your womb is starting to open to prepare for birth. This is usually the longest phase of labour. This early phase can stop and start and the amount of time it takes to move through this stage varies from person to person. It could take a few hours to a couple of days. Contractions at this stage are relatively mild and do not usually interfere with your activities.
Do I stay home with early labour? Yes. You will be most comfortable at home when you are in early labour. While at home, you can rest or watch TV, go for a walk, drink plenty of fluids, and start timing your contractons when you can no longer ignore them.
As you move from early labour into active labour, your contractions will become:
- stronger (you’ll no longer be able to talk and walk through them).
- longer (about 60 seconds in duration).more regular (every four to five minutes apart from the start of one contraction to the start of the next contraction).
- consistent (usually for at least one hour).
For many women giving birth, active labour will last between four and eight hours. However, this can be shorter or longer and will vary from person to person
Do I stay home with active labour?
No. It is time to head to the hospital and/or call your midwife.