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<p>First of all, I am NOT in preterm labor.  This I know for sure.</p>
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<p>But my Braxton-Hicks do seem awfully excessive.  Is this normal?</p>
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<p>I'm 33 1/2 weeks pregnant.</p>
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<p>I had a sonogram last Tuesday, and the little guy was transverse.  Head on my left side, butt on my right side, feet sometimes on my left side, sometimes literally on my bladder.  I can tell he's still transverse, though a couple times he's apparentley tried to put his head through my left hip (not very pleasant feeling, let me tell you!), but then moved back into transverse when he found no opening.</p>
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<p>The baby has not increases, nor decreased in activity.  He's stopped "rolling" as much, but is still just as active with his kicks and head butts.  He responds to me and his brother's voices, as well as light (flashlight on belly) and touch.  He's not in distress.</p>
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<p>I've been having Braxton-Hicks several times a day since about 18 weeks.</p>
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<p>The Braxton-Hicks have been almost constant since Thursday.  Not as in every 10 minutes and not as in all the same strength, but several times an hour, for the last four days, some I hardly notice, and some, including one about an hour ago, that literally almost brought me to my knees.  There is no pattern to them- sometimes I'll go an hour, hour and a half, with nothing, and then there'll be a good ten minutes of literally constant.</p>
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<p>When the Braxton-Hicks are at their worst, it does make me feel a bit nausaus sometimes.  A little.</p>
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<p>I've been sleeping, mostly on my left side, alot, and laying down as much as possible, as well as drinking more.</p>
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<p>I've had an occasional "shooting pain" in the... womanly area... usually around the time I have a Braxton-Hicks.</p>
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<p>I also feel more pressure, not like "baby coming out" pressure, but it feels like his head is engaging, even though I can tell that his head is still up just left of my belly button.</p>
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<p>I know you're not supposed to do this, but I only did this once, tonight in the shower, 'cause it feels like something's changing down there- I checked my cervix.  It seems alot softer and shorter, but not anything I'd think the doctor would be concerned about yet.  It was "normal" three weeks ago, according to the doctor.</p>
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<p>I have an appointment with my OB next Thursday (the 16th).</p>
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<p>Did/does anyone else have Braxton-Hicks like this?</p>
 

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<p>It sounds like you are having either irritable uterus, or there is a possibility that you actually are in PTL (which doesn't always feel the same as labor when you are full term.)  If rest and hydration are not helping out with the contractions, there are some things I would suggest. </p>
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<p>I'd get checked out for anything else that might be going on like a UTI (sometimes early on they don't have many symptoms) or any other type of infections or underlying health concerns that could be causing you to contract this much even when well hydrated.  I'd make sure you are really, really, really drinking enough fluids.  You might want to think about increasing your intake of magnesium, potassium, and calcium, but you will want to check on safe levels of these.  They can all help reduce cramping and contractions. </p>
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<p>I've had two preterm babies, so I'm in a bit of a different situation, but I would probably ask for a fetal fibronectin test, and depending upon the results I'd see how to treat the constant contractions.  You might also want to think about having your cervix checked either manually or with an ultrasound (which can look for funneling, whereas a manual check can't) but if you're having the fetal fibronectin, it would have to be done first because it is not accurate if it is done too soon after intercourse or an internal exam of any kind.</p>
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<p>oh, for a second there i thought i wrote this! i have the same thing. i went to the hospital because sometimes, they're 10 minutes apart for an hour or more, and they bloody HURT. they diagnosed me with an "irritable uterus". my BH have been really uncomfortable and have at least a 3 hour span every day of becoming semi-regular.. same thing happened with DD1 at 32 weeks, with this one it's been since 25 weeks. i'm nearly 34 weeks now and it's getting worse. baby definitely HAS dropped, but she's breech, not sure if that makes much difference.</p>
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<p>if you're worried, see your care provider. if you're just wondering and want to cope, a few things i've discovered do help a little. drink plenty - more than you think is necessary. go pee often. change what you're doing - laying down on my side seems to work best, walking and other activity makes it worse. other people say they can walk it out and it improves.</p>
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<p>i take a D/calcium/magnesium supplement at night. it seeems to tame the uterus somewhat to help me sleep. i don't do it all day though because of the way iron and calcium interfere with each others' absorption - i've been low on iron for ages, so i either focus on iron in the morning and cal/mag at night, or i have one "iron day" alternating with a "calcium day". eating plenty of potassium is also a good idea - i can't eat bananas so i tend to be low on potassium, and when i was sick i needed a supplement. most people can usually do a banana a day and it keeps the sodium/potassium levels in balance.</p>
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<p>it's tough when this happens.. it was hard for me the first time around, worse this time. but i guess even if it's not "normal" per se.. it's normal for me. :) i've had plenty of false alarms where i've gone to the hospital to check on things just in case. never a waste of my time, better safe than sorry, but definitely a pain (literally) to deal with at times!</p>
 

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<p>It may indeed be an irritable uterus and / or an irritable bladder.  I seem to have the latter - just as with a UTI, every irritation (kick, needing to pee) of the bladder cramps up my uterus.  But it could also be a UTI - I would probably ask my OB to do a test for that, as frequent BHs are a common symptom of a UTI (and you need to have it treated, you cannot just drink it away).</p>
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<p>As you say, it's best not to feel up your own cervix: it can lead to additional irritation and infection plus it's hard to draw conclusions from it.  My own OB doesn't even want to feel it more than is strictly necessary.  What you can conclude (and I got this from my OB) is that if it was normal three weeks ago, then the BH you've been having do not lead to softening / dilation (that insight helped me a lot).</p>
 

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<p>Apparently I have a irritable uterus. I felt pain sometimes, and I chalked it up to other things, because I had it with #1. I went into L&D for limited movement and found out I was contracting every 2-4 minutes for the 4 hours I was there. They did 2 cervical checks, and both were normal for 35 weeks, soft, but that was it. The midwife said the limited movement was probably because I was contracting...I don't know.</p>
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<p>Basically they gave me instructions: water. If it's not better, then IV then tubertiline, which I noticed did stop the uncomfortableness, but I don't recommend it, personally - it make me feel so funky. Oddly enough, I am taking lots of magnesium because I am constipated, and iron levels are good. I am drinking water non-stop now because it is worse the next day if I go one day with not drinking a lot.  I don't have a UTI, but they do check for that. I had this with my first, and I was induced at 40 weeks 5 days, so I don't have pre-term labor as a history.</p>
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<p>So it maybe be normal for you. But it never hurts to check and then discuss with your doctor. I do remember last pregnancy I had a UTI and had a lot of weird pain, but I never had a UTI before so I never said anything about the pain until they tested me.</p>
 
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