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Anyone have or is experiencing prodromal/stop-start/false labour?

(7 Posts)
LillianFullStop Sun 23-Oct-16 11:46:06

I've been having irregular stop start contractions over the last two weeks. Last night for 3 hours ranging from 10 minutes apart to 3 minutes apart. Intensity varies from mild to very painful. All very random and all very normal but after 2 weeks of this and am now at bang on 40w I am really sick and tired of it! Last night I was really hoping it was the real thing as it went on for longer than other episodes but all back to normal again this morning.

If I knew the contractions were doing something like dilating the cervix or exercising the uterus for a quicker labour then I'd feel happier but there is no hard evidence on what the point of it is besides making me exhausted and giving me false hope of imminent labour!!!

They don't tell you about this in antenatal classes or in pregnancy books but apparently this form of torture has a name prodromal labour. Anyone experiencing or has experienced this as well?

Found some articles about it but all they tell you to do is relax. Really does relaxing actually help?? What is relaxing meant to do actually? Or is the advice to relax pretty much the same as saying "just calm down there's nothing you can do about it" I'm so over it!!! angryangry

ohanami Sun 23-Oct-16 18:54:05

I think I did but the contractions never hurt so not sure if it really counted. I had a few sweeps during that time and was gradually dilating so that I was 3cm before my 4th and final sweep at 41+0. Dc2 was born the same afternoon after everything ramped up incredibly quickly- particularly unhelpfully, the ramping up started as yet more painless but noticeable twinges so we nearly didn't get to hospital in time. Hang on in there, it's a hugely frustrating time not knowing whether the next twinge is the start of the real thing but, as people kept telling me, nobody has been pregnant forever wink

JaneEP Sun 23-Oct-16 19:18:26

It's the way I've laboured for all 3 births. The first two I allowed hospital intervenion with an induction (which can cause more painful contractions) leading to an episiotomy for both. By my last birth I'd investigated everything and decided on a home birth with an independent midwife. It's difficult to remember details, (nearly 11 yrs ago) but I know I lost some of my plug a week before my waters broke. Once I'd started active labour, the contractions were much easier to cope with than with previous births on gas and air. I didn't need any pain relief at all. Approximately 4 hours later I gave birth to a nearly 11lb baby boy, no tears or stitches.

LillianFullStop Sun 23-Oct-16 22:39:40

Thanks jane and ohanami - I hope it is true what they say that it is working my uterus and cervix. And also that I end up with a faster labour - goodness knows I've done my fair share over the last 2 weeks already!

I've never said I would want an induction because of stories of cascading interventions if induced baby is ready - but I'm so tired now!

I have a sweep tomorrow so I hope that kicks things off properly.

Found another article

DramaAlpaca Sun 23-Oct-16 22:52:56

I think I had this with DC2, though I didn't realise it had a name! I had three or four days of uncomfortable contractions that came and went, starting around my due date. They weren't particularly painful, but they certainly weren't braxton hicks and they'd go on for ages.

I was getting so frustrated after a few days & I can't imagine how you must be feeling after two weeks of it. It didn't help that DC1 had arrived a few days early so I kind of expected DC2 to be early as well.

When I finally did go into labour it was a blessed relief. It wasn't particularly quick, though it was a lot faster than my labour with DC1 and I could definitely cope with the pain better.

Hope it all happens for you soon, OP.

pipnchops Thu 27-Oct-16 06:46:07

Yes! Thanks for your post because I think this is what I am experiencing and these articles are very interesting. I didn't know it had a name, I just thought I was going crazy!

I'm currently just over a week past my due date with my second pregnancy and have been thinking I'm in labour every night when I go to bed for the past two weeks. The first two nights I thought it was the real deal and called the midwife out (I'm planning a home birth) but now I'm just trying to relax when it happens (hard) and go to sleep, thinking if it's the real thing wouldn't be able to sleep. Next thing I know I'm waking up in the morning (or actually in the middle of the night for a wee!) thinking, yep, that was another false alarm as they have stopped.

DD1 was 12 days late and a very quick labour, I certainly didn't experience this or even Braxton Hicks in my last pregnancy. When labour started I really knew and got to the hospital just in time. So it is a bit nerve wrecking having this as I'm worried now that I won't take it seriously when the real thing happens and end up with my husband having to deliver the baby!! But I'm hoping that instincts will kick in and I'll just know when it's for real.

One thing I have noticed about these false labor contractions it's they seem pretty constant rather than at intervals I can time. I remember the last time they came in waves, so I'm waiting for that.

Good luck with your impending labour when it happens for real!

loulily27 Sun 06-Nov-16 09:08:58

Any news Lillian? I am 40+1 and experienced exactly the same as you. This is my 2nd and first I had to be induced 12 over which didn't work so had a section at 15 over. Hoping for a vbac this time x

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