Many women wonder what a contraction feels like, we’ll talk about what to feel for — as well as a way to monitor your contractions & track them.
What is a contraction?
A contraction is your uterus (which is basically, just a large muscle) tightening down on the baby. I really like how this video shows it:
I like to think of your cerivx as a tight sweater neck. Where the uterus is just slowly pushing the baby’s head through it. So, it starts really small, and grows as the head pushes on it more and more.
All of that is thanks to contractions.
When you hit ten centimeters (check out this post to learn more about vaginal exams), you’ll push in time with your contractions to give that baby it’s final shove out your vagina.
It’s all really a miracle. Just sort of a painful one. 🙂
What did your contractions feel like?
For me, contractions felt like a bad stomach ache or cramps with your period. You have to realize that you might just feel “crappy” much of the day — similar to how you feel during a bad period. That can be contractions (or, you just feel crappy).
Period cramps ARE contractions — they’re your uterus wringing out what was left of the lining that it built up since it’s not pregnant.
How do I know what a contraction feels like
Well, you likely haven’t had a period in quite a while. So, while that is a bummer — just try to remember back.
For a lot of women, that can be somewhat confusing.
SO, I have a solution
BloomLife Contraction Monitor & Promo Code
BloomLife has created a monitor that allows you to track contractions (and don’t worry — coupon code CURLS10 is going to save you on the cost).
It has a smartphone app that allows you to see what you’re experience is in real time.
We, of course, have similar monitors at the hospital — but they’re crazy expensive — you really wouldn’t want to buy one of those.
The great part about bloom is that it’s a rental opportunity. That means you can know, AT HOME, if you’re contracting — instead of coming to see me at the hospital.
Plus, you can wear it ALL the time. It’s pretty fantastic.
One of the things I really like is how it COUNTS contractions, it’s different than how we do it in the hospital — and you can find out more about how it works here.
Their low weekly rental fee, allows you to just get it when you need it, and return it when you’re done. 🙂
This video explains it a bit more:
I have been working with BloomLife for a while (if you’re lucky, you’ll see my testimonial on their home page) and because of this I have a bloom monitor coupon code — CURLS10 will save you 10% off your weekly fee (for as long as you rent the monitor). Which could save you a few onsies. 🙂
If you’d like to know more about why I think the BloomLife Monitor is a great deal — just sign up here and I’ll send you an email about it. 🙂
Wondering why I think it might be helpful -- I send you the details (and that coupon code) straight to your inbox:
Where do you feel your contractions?
Because your uterus is a pretty big muscle — you can feel your contractions in a variety of places. Areas women often feel them include:
- Lower abdomen
- Back (both lower and a bit higher)
Contractions feel like baby moving
I get this question a lot. Large amounts of fetal movement can trigger a contraction — so sometimes those happen together.
Contractions CAN feel like the baby is moving — they cause similar pangs and pains. A lot of my patients, once I have them on the monitor — and tell them it’s a contraction, will say — “Oh, I just thought the baby was moving.” So, that’s not unusual (but the BloomLife monitor can tell the difference between the two).
How do I know I’m contracting?
Well, if you don’t get the Bloom Monitor — your uterus will start to feel hard under your skin when you contract. It can be hard to tell for sure — but if you lay down, and really try to relax, as well as pressing on your belly when you feel the contraction, as well as when you don’t — you might be able to feel it.
But, you’ll also know it from a lot of pain.
Of course not EVERY contraction brings on labor. False labor (or practice contractions) can also be painful — they just don’t make your cervix open much.
AND, contractions aren’t the only thing that come when you’re in labor — my post “Am I In Labor” details a lot about all that. Labor involves your whole body — it’s an amazing and tiring event!
So, that’s the skinny on contractions. Looking for even MORE info — don’t miss my friend Katie’s pos tall about labor contractions!
If you like this type of informational post, sign up for my pregnancy series. I’d love to send you more valuable pregnancy information, based just where you’re at in your pregnancy — and check out some other helpful, similar posts below that.
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