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braxton hicks

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi ladies,


I'm not sure if this is the right place to post this, but I'll give it a go.  Even though this is my 3rd pregnancy I still have a hard time telling the difference between normal tightening of the abdomen and signs of prelabor.    I'm a little anxious about anything i feel because my last babe was born early and I think I ignored the prelabor signs, thinking they were normal braxton hicks.  Does anyone have some tips on what's normal and expected and what should be treated at prelabor?


i'm currently at 23 wks feeling tightening lower abdoman a lot and praying to get to 37wks!


hope you are all well!



post #2 of 9

Gabi, I can't say the difference between BH and pre labor, but I will say that I have had tons of BH with all of my pregnancies, and at 23 weeks they are becoming more common in this pregnancy.  My BH are never uncomfortable.  They are noticeable, but not worrisome.

post #3 of 9

I always say if you are ever worried, call your midwife. :)

With each pregnancy, my BH become more noticeable and intense. But not painful where even my early contractions are painful. Does it get worse when you walk around? Do you notice any pattern? Also BH are usually only felt in the front, not all over like a true contraction. 



post #4 of 9
I jist had my first uncomfy bh today. I feel strongly that it be to aoon but apparently my uterus doesn't think so
post #5 of 9

Mine can sometimes be strong. If they are real, they would be more of a pattern and you'd feel tightening typically wrapping to your back. It's not ALWAYS that way though. Drinking lots of water, laying on your left side all help. My MW with my last PGcy also told me to take magnesium supplements. That they help calm the uterus. It doesn't affect true labor so it's not a means to stop it. I love BH. I don't know why, it's weird. But they are doing something. Whether it's just getting your body ready (and it could be weeks still, not an indication of going early) or just telling you to slow down.

post #6 of 9

I have definitely had some strong BH this time.  I have noticed them tied to me not drinking enough water and if I've been running around all day with the other three kiddos.  So far, nothing too bad, though.  

post #7 of 9

I'm pretty sure I've had a couple of braxton-hicks, but not positive.


They feel like an intense tightening over my belly. Not painful at all, but not exactly comfortable. Better with walking. I'm fairly confident that it's not pre-labor . . . but I'm not entirely confident that they ARE braxton-hicks!

post #8 of 9

With preterm labor, one thing to pay attention to is unusual back ache.  I know back ache is common later in pregnancy but when I worked as a nurse in a nursery/NICU, one thing that I heard preterm women comment on was a lower back ache that would not ease up in any position.  As you have had preterm labor before, if you have consistent BH and lower back ache, take it seriously.  Better to go in and be told it is nothing than to ignore it and go in later to be told you are 7 cm.

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies ladies.  I'm still having trouble deciphering between "normal" BH and pre-labor contractions, but I have spoken to my midwife and gynecologist and they both said that what I am experiencing (tightening in my lower abdomen, usually late in the day) is linked to dehydration.  It happens when i haven't drank enough and we pregnant ladies should apparently be drinking 3 liters of water a day.  I don't know how I can possibly have time to drink (and visit the bathroom) that much!  Anyhow I'm trying as best as I can to drink more now.  They both said if I feel this tightening to put my feet up and start drinking until it goes away.  My gyno said if it doesn't go away in an hour then to get checked out.  My midwife said to stay off my feet for 24 hours.  Dehydration can lead to premature labor, so we're not to take it lightly.  Anyhow, thought I would share this info with any of you who may be experiencing the same thing.


Be Well,


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