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early stages of labour

(25 Posts)
bethftm Wed 01-Jul-15 08:55:15

Advice please smile ftm! Had 8 hours of regular contractions yesterday which started 10 mins apart and ended 3/4 mins apart, went to be assessed and wasn't quite 1cm dilated but cervix was completely thinned out and nearly 1cm. They sent me home with dihydrocodeine so I could sleep through contractions which didn't work until about 3am, am taking paracetamol now and is definitely helping to ease the pain.. A bath has helped slow things down a bit but I don't really want that to happen! Any advice on keeping contractions/dilation going? And how long it will be before I'm around 3/4cm dilated? Thank you smile sorry for long post!

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Wed 01-Jul-15 08:58:40

Walk! Have you got a gym ball? Walking up and down stairs sideways is supposed to help. My early labour with DD was long, and they didn't give me any pain relief. It took about 18 hours of contractions every 3 mins to get from 1cm to 4cms. That's not usual though so don't panic. I think they usually say about a 1cm dilation an hour.

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Wed 01-Jul-15 08:59:00

And good luck!

bethftm Wed 01-Jul-15 09:49:31

Thank you! I think I'll still probably have a few days to go as having a bath feels like it's slowed things down at the moment - obviously getting out could mean they start again but I guess only time will tell?? Also I guess baby will come when ready and it's just the waiting game?!

bethftm Wed 01-Jul-15 09:54:43

& sorry yes I do have a gym ball was bouncing lots yesterday and going to try bouncing lots daily in the hope it will move things along nicely! I have a midwife appointment today so will speak to her for suggestions / maybe ask for a sweep! smile

coneywonder Wed 01-Jul-15 10:01:05

Yeah a bath is supposed to slow things down. I'm so jealous I'm 39 weeks today and thought some period type pains yesterday were things kicking off but now nothing. What do yours feel like?

NickyEds Wed 01-Jul-15 10:01:08

Yep, just a waiting game I'm afraid! I hate it when this phase is talked of as "not real labour"-I reckon sometimes sooo much hard work goes into those first four cm. After my waters broke and labour started I had 24 hours to get things going before being augmented. I walked miles around the bloody hospital, bounced on the torture device birthing ball, up and down stairs the lot. Looking back I would probably have been better off saving my energy and trying to get some comfortable rest. I spoke to my consultant last week who said that there's nothing (except syntocinon!) that will get labour going and once it's underway nothing will stop it. Eat light meals and try to relax. Good Luck.

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Wed 01-Jul-15 10:15:15

Nicky it really irritates me that my notes say I was in labour for 7 hours. After 48 hours of excruciating contractions every 3 mins I beg to differ!

bethftm Wed 01-Jul-15 10:45:54

Yeah think I'm going to just have to suck it and see! Not due for a week and a half so baby has that time to get wriggling haha! Fingers crossed he/she decides to get a move on! This heat is awful sad yeah I know I already had 8 hours yesterday of consistent contractions and that's not including the night time haha! But technically not established labour so they don't count it!

LibrariesGaveUsPower Wed 01-Jul-15 11:52:28

What I would say is not to get too focused on 'getting things going'. I don't want to sound all doom and gloom, but this sounds like me on the Saturday night/Sunday of my first labour. DD1 wasn't born until Tuesday.

All that bouncing and walking is great, but if you have a long early labour you don't want to go into it too wiped out. Rest as much as you possibly, possibly can. With intervals of activity.

bethftm Wed 01-Jul-15 12:20:30

That gives me hope though as I've geared myself to thinking it'll still be another week or so! So anything before then will be great! :D I'm bouncing on my ball with intervals so I can break and sit down for a while too.. Especially in this heat! If I'd gone into active labour last night I think I would have been tired! Done lots of housework & went for lunch then contractions came on.. Was at the hospital until midnight and if I had to push baby out I think I would have struggled! Trying to conserve energy at the same time as getting baby moving hehe x

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Wed 01-Jul-15 12:45:49

After 48 hours of no sleep due to painful contractions I was useless at pushing. I just had no energy left. Although don't think it will be any better this time, I'm 39+1 and my 19 month old has broken her leg and is waking up 5-6 times a night and taking ages to settle so I can't see me getting any rest before labour!

NickyEds Wed 01-Jul-15 13:26:53

With ds my waters broke at around 6am after a long restful night. He was born at 1pm the next day so i was in labour for about 30ish hours. I've often wondered how I would have managed if my waters had gone at 11pm after a busy day....I'd have been absolutely knackered. I got no sleep at all on the ward after ds was born (bladder problem-nice) so when I finally got home I hadn't slept for nearly 60 hours. The tiredness was far worse than the stitches etc. So I'm very much of the opinion that rest is best when it comes to early labour!!!!

Worlds flowers I'm 38+1 with an 18 month old and knackered and he sleeps really well- don't know how you're doing it.

thesmallbear Wed 01-Jul-15 13:59:07

Hi ladies just want to say that I feel your pain. I have been having contractions since Monday night but they are not regular. MLU won't have me until they are 3 cm apart. They are really painful though. I went to the MLU this morning anyway as I was going out of my mind a bit (hadn't really had any sleep since Monday). They gave me some prescription strength codeine for the pain and that was it. The codeine did manage to knock me out enough to sleep and the pain seems much more manageable after a snooze!

laura825 Wed 01-Jul-15 14:17:04

Hi ladies, I am also feeling your pain. I have a week and half til due date but my midwife has told me I'm showing signs of 'early labour' since my 36 week appt. contractions were fairly regular but now seem to have eased off and come and go. This weather is not helping else it's making me not want to do anything although I want to tidy and clean but just don't have the energy! Let's hope these babies get a wriggle on!!

bethftm Wed 01-Jul-15 21:04:04

Yeah I've heard rest can do wonders! After sleeping last night (whilst still breathing through contractions) I found the pain more bearable this morning! Although ones I'm getting now are very sore! Lots of mucus plug coming away gradually today too, so all good signs! smile this heat is definitely making things harder! Trying to rest and drink water and keeping in front of the fan as much as poss!!

CuppaSarah Thu 02-Jul-15 06:18:21

Just thought I'd say, a long latent phase usually means a short easy active labour, so don't worry if it drags on a bit. Your body is saving itself for the main event.

BellMcEnd Thu 02-Jul-15 07:28:02

My labour with DS3 would certainly corroborate with what Cuppa says: about 15 hours latent then once he little rat decided to get going it was 2.2 hours from start to finish including placenta hmm. He's always been lovely but awkward

BellMcEnd Thu 02-Jul-15 07:28:21

PS Best of luck, OP!

bethftm Thu 02-Jul-15 07:33:58

Thank you guys this is very reassuring.. Still been having contractions but very irregular! However, lost lots of mucus plug throughout the afternoon.. So am hoping baby is nearly ready to make an appearance! X

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Thu 02-Jul-15 07:57:26

Unfortunately mine didn't work out like that, long latent phase and long active phase, including very long pushing stage!

bethftm Thu 02-Jul-15 09:59:37

Ah really! In my head I imagine a long active labour, but just want to get to that stage now haha! Trying to rest quite a bit just invade! ;)

bethftm Thu 02-Jul-15 09:59:53

In case

thesmallbear Fri 03-Jul-15 05:30:13

Can anyone help me? I've been in the latent phase now since Monday night and I'm going out of my mind. I'll try and explain the best that I can, but all the nights and days are morphing into one.

Got back from my pregnancy yoga class on at about 10pm on Monday night. I'd been experiencing pains in the class and also during the day. I had at first thought they were Braxton Hicks, but they seemed to be coming to thick and fast for this to be the case anymore.

DP rang MLU to say contractions between 8min to 5min, so irregular. They said to come in when they were 3 mins apart and so strong I couldn't talk.

I went in on Wed morning as the contractions, although still not regular, had started getting stronger and longer. They watched me having the contractions and said they didn't think I was very dilated (although didn't do VE as they said they can be painful and didn't want to do one unnecessarily) they sent me home with prescription strength codeine etc. Had a show at some point between Wednesday night and Thursday morning and managed to get a bit of sleep at one point due to having a warm bath which seemed to slow things down.

I decided to go in again on Thursday afternoon, as although the contractions were still irregular, they had really ramped up pain wise and were lasting much longer (had thrown up in the night too). Asked for a VE this time and was told that everything had thinned out and I was 3 going on for 4 cm. I understand that you have to be 4cm to count as active labour. Midwife did a sweep and I then went off for a trace due to reduced movements. When coming back from the trace I was getting long strong contractions every 2-3 mins. I started to freak out a bit, saying I couldn't cope with this if it went on for another 8 hours or whatever. The midwife took me to a room and said I could use the pool, which would be soothing and might either speed things up or slow things down. Contractions slowed down a lot and were a lot less painful, but I was happy as I got some respite for a bit. Even managed to have a 20 min nap (the most since I went to bed Sunday night). MW said I needed to try and eat and drink more as I had lots of keynote in my urine (throw most of the food up, but managed to keep down some lucazade).

Eventually, the contractions started coming back again just at shift cross-over. The new MW examined me and said that I still wasn't quite 4cm and that I should go home and try and get some rest there. Had a warm bath in the hope it might settle me down again enough to sleep, but have been up all night with contractions about every 5 mins. They are very painful. If I start to snooze between them, my breath is taken away when the pain comes back. I've had no rest at all.

I don't know what to do. Until they are regular i.e. about 3 mins apart and I'm about 5cm I can't have anything stronger like the gas and air. I'm so tired and in agony. The tens machine and the codeine simply isn't cutting it. I can't believe this bit doesn't 'count' as labour!

Sorry this is long - and advice?

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Fri 03-Jul-15 06:47:29

No advice but sympathy as it sounds very like my 'early' labour. When were you last examined?

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