When the child wants to arrive ahead of time: what to do?

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Philippe Gloaguen
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When the baby wants to arrive ahead of time

How can we distinguish premature labor pains from harmless labor pains? What can we do when does the baby want to arrive ahead of time? We asked Dr. Rupert Linder, gynecologist and psychotherapist in Birkenfeld. 





Real labor pains act on mouth of the uterus. The cervix shortens, the mouth of the uterus softens, and the baby slips deeper into the pelvis. If they are one or two, it is nothing tragic. About four weeks before giving birth, around the XNUMXth week, it is even normal: they are Braxton-Hicks contractions. Women often feel better afterwards, because they have more space in the upper belly and are able to have more air again.

In case of pains that appear earlier, we ask three questions to be able to classify them: If spread within 24 hours, are they no more than 10-15 contractions? Do they come very irregularly, for example two contractions once 20 minutes apart and then everything is silent for hours? Does the tummy get stiff but does the mom feel no pulling or pain at all? If the woman answers three "Yes", it is mostly normal preparatory labor pains. If there is a "No", it can be real premature labor.

Are there still other signs that indicate premature labor?

For example, if the pains come in the evening or when you feel stressed or after physical exertion. Extreme fatigue can also be a sign.

What are the labor pains like?

Every woman perceives them differently: in some the belly hardens or feels heaviness, for others the pain is similar to menstrual pain, but it can also be a sensation of downward pressure.

You say that premature labor has a message: which one?

The body or the child says: "Enough!"


It's not always easy, though.

Pregnancy is not a disease, but in these nine months there are other conditions, which many women today do not admit. A pregnancy makes a woman more delicate, more emotional.


Read also: Premature babies

What do you recommend?

The goal should be to relax internally, take a break more often, establish an intimate relationship with the baby, talk to him. Mothers-to-be who have contractions can talk quietly with the baby, telling him to stay a little longer in his belly.



And should it help?

Yes, because with a continuous respect for the conditions in which one is, the contractions disappear; even a shortened cervix can become longer and more stable again.

What do you think about bed rest?

The thing is controversial. About 20% of premature labor is caused by gravity, i.e. because the baby pushes on the mouth of the uterus. In this case, of course, lying down helps, if it is also needed with the pelvis raised. A large amount of premature labor, however, is more related to stress. Again it helps to rest, keeping your legs high on the sofa. But whether it is just lying down or taking care of yourself and relaxation is not known. If a woman is just lying down but her head continues to grind, she does not bring great results: because it is not only the body that needs to relax, but also her soul.

But before giving birth there are a lot of things to do so that after the baby is at ease!

It is more important that the mother feels comfortable: she should talk about it with her partner, with her friends, even with her doctor. And it is to him that in case of premature labor she must explain well how they are, when they come, but also what she feels and what fears she has. Only those who feel comfortable with her can also relax.

And what if despite the pregnancy you still want to finish a project or if there are older children who claim their rights?

Even if you make your contribution by decreasing it by 10%, nobody notices it: neither the boss nor the eldest son. But for the woman herself it really means a lot!

Can you give us a couple of concrete examples?

It's important to take the time to understand your body and give up stressful things, even if it's a weekend trip with a friend. General rule: if you are in doubt whether you can still do something, the answer is always one and it is clear: No. Otherwise it only helps to get sick or a housekeeper.

Probably the mutual does not take it into account

It would be too shortsighted of them! Three or four weeks with the maid cost less and make more sense than taking into account a premature birth: the intensive ward for premature babies, possible disabilities, problems, costs ...

What if attention to yourself doesn't help enough?

Then the intervention of the medicine is required: for some women it helps a high dosage of magnesium, because it relaxes the muscles, and can not only hinder calf cramps, but also contractions. Sometimes anti-contraction drugs are also needed, the so-called tocolytics: they relax the muscles of the uterus, but still have side effects.

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  • sleep
  • development of the fetus
  • estimated date of delivery
  • mum
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  • labor pains
  • weeks 29 40
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