How Do I Know if I’m in Labor?
Even if you aren’t experiencing many contractions and have no idea about your mucous plug, you WILL take notice once your water breaks.
Perhaps you nightmare is that it will break when you are somewhere less than convenient? Most women have a “feeling” before this happens. Often, the size and shape of your stomach will change oddly, and you may feel a surge of feel-good hormones, like the “cleaning” frenzy many pregnant women are accused of. When your water does break, you will discover that it is very difficult to mistake it for anything else, besides peeing on yourself. If you are leaking fluid, you should see your OB/GYN immediately, just to make sure it isn’t amniotic fluid.
One of the most important aspects for knowing when you are in labor is your gut feeling.
Every woman will describe their personal experience a little differently; however, all of them can admit that something has changed. This something may just be how you feel, or look; but it is definitely tangible to the pregnant women. Don’t discount your own inner feelings, even if you are sent home from a hospital for false labor. Personally speaking, I had a doctor’s visit the very day I went into labor. My OB/GYN told me I had at least two to three more weeks to go. My water broke that night.
If you aren’t sure about something, or feel something is different, then make the trip to your birthing center. The worst thing that can happen is that they will hook you up to a monitor and send you home shortly thereafter. Still, chances are you will be back soon enough.