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Tell me your stories of cervix ripening too early but full-term baby anyway!

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Because I'm only in week 28 and my cervix is getting soft already, giving me reasons to think these BH contractions and lower back dull aches (the source of all sensation during labor with DS) are actuallly affecting my cervix. (That and all the BH contractions when I was pg w/ DS led to givin birth in week 34 ) I need some positive stories where cervix softened/effaced/dilated pre-term but baby stayed inside until it was a healthy, ready-to-be-born babe!
post #2 of 18
you know, a soft cervix and strong BH contractions could very well be NORMAL for you. When the uterus grows, as the baby, the ligaments that go from your uterus to your sacrum often will cause some low back ache.

I'd say don't let anyone check you - including those annoying vaginal ultrasounds where they measure your cervical length - and just know that your body is working perfectly!

I've had clients who thought they were having preterm labor, and even were like 2-3cm dilated at your point, but it was NORMAL for them.

We don't know (and shouldn't know, really) what is normal for each woman throughout pregnancy. Nobody should be making assumptions about what is "right" for your body.
post #3 of 18
Thread Starter 
I would totally believe every word of that, except I've spent a few days visiting my baby in the NICU (too sensitive to even be touched )and I am scared to go through that again. I just am more inclined to believe that I am at risk for another premature baby since I've BTDT,ya know? I no longer have lovely faith in my uterus's ability to discern what's a good amount of prep-work to do before the big day, and when to spit the baby out in 1 hour flat w/ incredibly strong contractions (my first babe came at 34 weeks and couldn't breathe on his own). I would love to make it to 36 weeks this time.... :
post #4 of 18
Ask yourself what the cervical exams are accomplishing. If you go into PTL, you will know. The cervical exams don't do anything except increase the risk of infection, membrane rupture, and cause needless worry. If your babe is going to come early
(God forbid!), a cervical exam is not going to change that.

Lots of second time moms dilate and efface early with no problems whatsoever. I know someone who walked around at 4 cms for three weeks and delivered at 38 weeks.

Would you consider a hypnosis CD? Hypnobabies makes one caled "Baby stay in!".
post #5 of 18
I'm one of those who walked around for three weeks at 4cm dilated. And the two weeks before that, I had been at 2cm. Fully effaced the entire time. My husband and I could feel the head ourselves, just a few inches up the birth canal (my midwife didn't believe that until she felt it). I delivered at 40 1/2 weeks using castor oil to induce, because I had some hbp and they were threatening to induce with pitocin. I had once incident of intense labor in those five weeks before delivery, which is what got me to 4cm -- but then I stopped, and luckily they let me go home.

Looking back, I wish I had not known how dilated I was, because along with it came all this pressure -- at first to keep the baby in, then to get the baby out. I could have done without the pressure.

I understand your desire to know anything that would help prevent premature birth this time. I like pp's suggestion of hypnobirthing tapes. Another thing you might try is craniosacral sessions, or homeopathics.

Wishing the best for you...

April
Griffin 2/04
post #6 of 18
I was 3-4cms at 34ish weeks with my last baby. I was admitted for observation because I was contracting more than 7 in an hour and really mentally prepared myself for an early birth.

He arrived the day before his due date--9 lbs.

After two vaginal checks to check to see if I was dilating, I didn't have any more until I was in labor. I could have been more dilated, but I stayed that way for more than 5 weeks. I could have been dilated like that for months. I think that I probably was because I have checked myself now and I am not closed tight--at 19 weeks pregnant. I just have LOTS of BH ctx, not painful, just working out my uterus.

Am I worried? Not at all. I have faith that my body will tell me (and not with the state of my cervix) if something is happening.

Good luck to you!
post #7 of 18
Just sending you "Baby Stay In" vibes!

May your child be born when the time is most right!
post #8 of 18
Another former pre-term labor mama here too! I went into PTL at 30 weeks - 2 cm dilated, 75% effaced, contractions ~8 to 10 minutes apart. I spent a week in the hospital on mag sulfate then complete bedrest at home on terbutaline until 36 weeks. At 36 weeks I was 4 cm dilated, 90% effaced, went off of bedrest (and resumed bowling : ). I walked around that way for 3 weeks. DS was born at 39 weeks, at 8 lb 3 oz.

I second what a PP said about the Hypnobabies CD. I didn't get the baby-stay-in CD, but I did the others and the relaxations really helped me.

Good luck, mama!
post #9 of 18
When I was pregnant with ds, I spent the whole last month with a ripe cervix that was 2cm. He was born at 39 weeks though.
post #10 of 18
With my second dd I started having the same kinds of bh and lower back pains you are describing at 22 weeks, I was losing bits of my mucous plug throughout the end of second and the third trimester, and was dialated to 2 before 30 weeks. I was about 60% effaced as well. Even with all of that, she was not born until her due date.
post #11 of 18
HI Angelica!

I'm sorry to hear that PTL is worring you. We've spoken before and you know my son, Erik, was born at 29 weeks. I'd have to say I agree that I would really limit cervical checks, drink lots and lots of water, and do as little as you can. In Switzerland I was never put on the Magsulfate (sp?) that many women in the USA are, but they did give Magnesiocard. It is also taken for muscle spasms over here in Europe. It did help to calm the contractions. It comes in lemon and lime flavour and you mix it in water I had to drink it 4 times a day (you would need to check with your midwife). We can buy it at the apoteke I was also given hormonal tocolyctics.

I wish you all the best. I know that having a preemie is so heartbreaking and it must be so hrad to put your mind to rest due to your previous experience. I wish I had better advice, but I don't. I know that I am trying really hard to put my experience behind me before we have our next baby. It's very difficult.

I will be thinking of you and giving you lots of "stay put baby" vibes. If you need to talk PM me. We're leaving to visit family in the US, but I don't mind making an international call just to talk.

Olivia
post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by etoilech
HI Angelica!

I'm sorry to hear that PTL is worring you. We've spoken before and you know my son, Erik, was born at 29 weeks. I'd have to say I agree that I would really limit cervical checks, drink lots and lots of water, and do as little as you can. In Switzerland I was never put on the Magsulfate (sp?) that many women in the USA are, but they did give Magnesiocard. It is also taken for muscle spasms over here in Europe. It did help to calm the contractions. It comes in lemon and lime flavour and you mix it in water I had to drink it 4 times a day (you would need to check with your midwife). We can buy it at the apoteke I was also given hormonal tocolyctics.

I wish you all the best. I know that having a preemie is so heartbreaking and it must be so hrad to put your mind to rest due to your previous experience. I wish I had better advice, but I don't. I know that I am trying really hard to put my experience behind me before we have our next baby. It's very difficult.

I will be thinking of you and giving you lots of "stay put baby" vibes. If you need to talk PM me. We're leaving to visit family in the US, but I don't mind making an international call just to talk.

Olivia
((Olivia)) how sweet of you to offer your support.

It is hard to put my last experience behind me and not stress overly much. I wish I could have the same attitude this time around as when I started getting all these same signs/symptoms with DS (I read about cervix's dilating and women going months before labor and thought, "see? Why should I worry about my ripening cervix? I'll lay low and take it easy/read novels since I'm wiped out anyway, but not worry"), but since I was cavalier about the little intuition inside my heart that said "Stop! Slow down! In fact, Lay down! Baby needs you to be as calm as possible!!!" the first time around and ended up with an early birth, I'm inclined to be really obedient to it this time around, kwim? It feels right, in my heart, to listen to what I feel like my body is saying, and my body has been telling me for several weeks now to just flop and rest because I am not a hearty pregnant type, and if I want to keep this baby inside me, it will take a lot of horizontal, calm rest.

The prenatal care system here did include pelvic exams and ultrasounds to check out baby and cervix in response to what I was telling them about my contractions, but they didn't actually do anything but urge me to rest as much as possible. They have the same attitude as many of you, that a cervix in all stages of ripening at any point in pregnancy can all be normal, and they won't really do anything until PTL has begun in earnest before week 34, and it was just past 34 weeks when my son was born so they took no measures to stop his arrival. But now that I have a history of PTL, they have agreed with me to take things more seriously this time around, and will intervene if I feel that the cervical changes are soon leading to labor (I'll use my intuition as well as compare to my last experience). I want the cervical exams because I want to compare what I am feeling to what is happening to my cervix to use my best judgment about how strict a level of bedrest (at home) to be on. Only because I've BTDT and remember quite exactly how the cervical softening, shortening, effacing, dilating, water breaking, baby being born slippery slope process took place, do I feel that the knowledge will be useful to me.

I'm going to rest in bed, hydrate, consider all herbs and natural supplements designed to help this sort of situation.....in general, try a little harder this time around with whatever I feel is the appropriate way to nurture this pregnancy, as well as when I feel perhaps the hospital has something to offer me in terms of stopping labor. I still need to research what means they have to stop labor..... I'm not clear on that.
post #13 of 18
I can't write a lot; I'm at the moment. I just wanted to pipe up and say that I was almost fully effaced and about 2 cm from 32 weeks, 3 cm at 36 weeks, and DD wasn't born until 39 weeks. I'd tell the whole story, but this child is Lots of baby-stay-put vibes for you!
post #14 of 18
At 35 weeks pregnant, I felt very "off" after working a 50-hour week, and asked my midwife to check me. I was 3-4 cm dialated and 80% effaced! I went on bedrest for a week, took procardia, and even ended up going to L&D one day to get a shot of terbutaline (sp?). Once I hit 36 weeks, I wasn't on bedrest or medication anymore, but I didn't go back to work. I kept dialating, and by 38.5 weeks I was at 6cm and still walking around! I delivered at 39 weeks, and DS was a healthy 7lbs 11oz. My midwife says that I'm the example she now uses when people freak out about being dialated weeks before they're due!

ETA: my cervix getting ready ahead of time made labor very short! DS was born after only 7 hours of labor, not bad for a first time mom!
post #15 of 18
Hi. I had serious contractions/irritable uterus starting at twenty weeks with my last pregnancy, and when I went in to the emergency OB/GYN, she said I was probably going to deliver immediately, based on the fact that my cervix was well on its way. Well, fourteen weeks later after induced labor, I did deliver...but not until then. It was just my body doing its own weird thing, but you don't really know until after the fact. But lots of drama, bedrest, no sex, lots of water, internal ultrasound, exams, Serious Discussions, lecturing from creepy perinatologists, etc etc until then. There is a good org called Sidelines for people who get put up onto bedrest, and they also know a lot about new tests and standards for preterm labor. Apparently, sometimes it can be an undiagnosed infection, etc. I had other complications as well (preeclampsia), and my daughter was born at 34 weeks, but I was on pitocin and mag sulfate, working at cross purposes, the entire time. This time, hoping for homebirth!

I've told my current midwife this story, and she said there was some new, fairly noninvasive test that can be done to see whether labor is actually imminent within fourteen days, or if your body is doing the funky chicken for good times. It's called Fetal Fibronectin. Anyhow, maybe you can ask about this. You can avoid all the other exam drama that way, and either prepare yourself mentally (and they might give that super-fun drug mag sulfate! or I guess stuff to help develop the lungs) or you will feel relieved and relax. Here is an article about it. http://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/iams.htm
post #16 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Queen of Cups
ETA: my cervix getting ready ahead of time made labor very short! DS was born after only 7 hours of labor, not bad for a first time mom!
Amen, my first came out in less than 2 hours after my water finally broke and contractions became painful.....I guess those two-three weeks of painless BH accomplished all of first stage labor for me! :LOL


and thanks for that article about fetal fibronection--going to bring it up to my nurse today.
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Butterflymom
but since I was cavalier about the little intuition inside my heart that said "Stop! Slow down! In fact, Lay down! Baby needs you to be as calm as possible!!!" the first time around and ended up with an early birth, I'm inclined to be really obedient to it this time around, kwim? It feels right, in my heart, to listen to what I feel like my body is saying, and my body has been telling me for several weeks now to just flop and rest because I am not a hearty pregnant type, and if I want to keep this baby inside me, it will take a lot of horizontal, calm rest.
This sounds so right -- to listen to that voice. I want to again suggest craniosacral work, which will help you stay in touch with that wise body voice. I know of a woman and baby whose lives were saved by a decision she made during a cs session about her labor (she actually had the cs session during a "break" (lol) in her labor to help her decide. She was able to ask her body and baby what to do during that session, and able to hear the answer. Craniosacral also does very practical work with the soft tissues, muscles, and nerves of the body -- so I would think it would be a great way to work with your cervix during this time. Here's a link to help you find a practitioner:
http://www.iahp.com/pages/search/index.php

Keep on keepin' on!!

April
Griffin 2/04
post #18 of 18
Thread Starter 
I clicked on the link and no one is available in the city I live in (Tampere) and we can't be road tripping 2 hours to go meet with someone.

But I feel pretty confident about just obeying my inner voice the way that feels natural, and I think things will be ok.
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