How Can I Tell How Far Apart Contractions Are

6 Replies
margie - December 5

i am having a lot of painful cramping and pressure low and in my back...but if these are contractions i dont know how to time them because its just a constant pain, does that mean that its not really a contraction then? im so confused...i just dont want to go to the hospital until im for sure ready, i dont want to get sent home, but also at the same time i dont want to ignore them if its real. i'm about to go home in a while and drink some water and lay down to see if they go away, i had them like this for hours this mornign and it stopped...i just want to know how i will know when its time?

 

margie - December 5

ok, guess its not so constant, it lasted about 10-15 min and now it stopped...guess i'll have to see if it starts again or if im just getting in that stage where im going to have a lot of random contractions, i lost my plug this morning so who knows!

 

Buffi R. - December 5

I know how you feel. I'm having some painful contractions now too, but like you, sometimes they're just constant pain without a beginning & end. All I know for timing them (when they start to become separate from each other) is that the time between contractions is the beginning of one to the beginning of the next, not the end of one to the beginning of the next. I actually had that backwards until I learned the correct way in my labor course during this pregnancy, and this is my second baby....you'd think I would have learned that correctly before. The length of the contraction is the beginning of one to the end of the same one. Once they start to separate from each other, you should be able to feel the stomach tightening and/or menstrual like pain, and start the timer at the beginning of that one and stop it when it's over - that's the length of the contraction. Then keep track of the original beginning time and compare it to when the next one starts - that's how far apart they are. Hope that helps!

 

Brendansmom - December 5

Cramping and a nagging backache are pre-labor symptoms. I never had any real contractions the first time so I'm not exactly sure what they feel like, but my Dr. described them as painful and they become more intense. I think I'm starting to have random contractions and to me it feels like the cramping and backache get very intense for about 30-60 seconds and then it pa__ses. Once you determine what your contractions feel like, then just wait for them to become regular.

 

Jilloh - December 5

I was always told if you change positions (from walking to sitting or from sitting to standing, or laying down to walking, something to that effect) and you still feel them it's prolly time to head to the hospital. If you can't talk through them then it's prolly time to head to the hospital. If your water breaks its time to go. If a shower or heating pad applied to the area provides no relief. This is what I have been told.

 

DaBonkElsMe - December 5

I have been having the same thing, cramps that last for 10 to 15 minutes and then go away, only to return later. But I have also had braxton hicks, and when i have those, I feel the cramping begin, then my uterus actually gets hard, then it starts to die down and the cramps get less intense. They last about a minute or two. This is what my Dr told me to time. Unfortuately, the most i have had so far is 3 in a row before the lesson and go away. Once real labor begins, they will get stronger, and not go away. But every girl is different and you may never feel anything like that, it's hard to know what to do, but quick delivieries at home or in the car are really rare, so try not to worry!!

 

margie - December 6

darn, i feel like i missed my window...i had what really felt from what you all describe as labor type contractions yesterday morning, they did go away, but after hours and if i had gone to the hospital my doctor had already told me he would have come and broke my water for me to start the labor coming...i know that im still early from my due date and all, but it would be nice to have her a bit farther from christmas for her sake so her birthday will be more seperate from it. i hope that they start again today....maybe i'll try s_x, walking and all that natural stuff that may or may not help just so i can get in to the hospital to get things going. wish me luck!

 

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