How can you tell if you're going into labor?

Regardless of the signs that you experience, it's still best to get consultations from your doctor as they would know best when your due date is as well as when you should get ready to go to the hospital to give birth.

1. Your baby "drops"

About one to four weeks before you start going into labor, your baby will slowly descend into your pelvis. What's happening here is that your baby is getting into the position that they'll have when you give birth. You'll have more frequent trips to the bathroom during this time, since your baby's head is pushing against your bladder. However, you'll have a little more breathing room since as your baby goes down, there's less pressure against your lungs.

2. Your cervix starts to dilate

A few days or weeks before your labor, your doctor will start tracking the dilation or expansion of your cervix to have an idea if you're close to giving birth.

4. You experience more cramps and back pain

You'll start to feel more cramps and pain in your groin and lower back as your due date starts getting closer. This means that your muscles and joints are preparing for your body to give birth.

5. Your joints feel loose

joints

The hormone, relaxin, is produced throughout your pregnancy. This hormone makes your ligaments softer, and your joints looser. Before going into labor, you'll start to feel that your joints are becoming looser than usual. This is your body's way of opening up your cervix before you give birth.

6. You start to have diarrhea

It's not a welcome sign of labor, but diarrhea means that your body is relaxing in preparation for giving birth. Just make sure to always keep hydrated and know where the bathroom is!

7. You stop gaining weight, or you start losing weight

Near the end of pregnancy, your weight gain will start to tail off. This is perfectly normal, and you shouldn't worry that your baby might stop growing. The weight gain is due to the amniotic fluid levels going down, and it's also a factor for more frequent potty breaks.

Go to the next page to see the signs that you're almost ready to give birth!

8. Your vaginal discharge changes color

Yeah, it's a bit gross to talk about, but one important sign that you're a few hours away from giving birth would be a change in your vaginal discharge. You'll see that the discharge is getting thicker and there is an increase in the amount of discharge coming out. You'll also see your mucuous plug, or the mucuous membrane sealing off your uterus come out. This means that you're almost going to give birth!

9. You start to feel strong contractions

labor

Contractions are a good sign of active labor. Though, you have know of Braxton - Hicks contractions. These contractions are basically your uterus "practicing" for the actual moment that you'll give birth. A good way of knowing if your contractions are Braxton - Hicks contractions is that active contractions don't ease up; Braxton - Hicks contractions usually go away after a while.

10. Your water breaks

Interestingly, about 15% of women experience their water breaking, so you shouldn't wait for your water to break before going to the hospital to give birth!

Regardless of the signs that you experience, it's still best to get consultations from your doctor as they would know best when your due date is as well as when you should get ready to go to the hospital to give birth.

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READ: Viral Photo: Mom embraces firstborn before giving birth to next child

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