How to tell if your pregnancy contractions are normal

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Oct 15, 2015

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Quick Bites

  • In pregnancy, before “true” labour, you have “false” labour pains.
  • The sharp pain on the side of abdomen is Round ligament pain.
  • True labor feels different for every woman & every pregnancy.
  • If you are not sure about the pain, call a doctor.

In pregnancy, before you have a “true” labour, you have a high probability of having “false” labour pains, also known as Braxton Hicks contractions in the beginning. This happens because the body gives signals to be ready for the real thing i.e. child birth, but this phenomenon is not a sign of real labour that is yet to begin or is about to start.
How to tell if your pregnancy contractions are normal

What exactly does Braxton Hicks contraction feel like?

In some cases, women describe Braxton Hicks contraction as the tightening of the abdomen area that comes and goes every now and then. Some say that these contractions feel like menstrual cramps and may be uncomfortable, but don’t cause labor or open the cervix. Women may feel this in the third trimester or as early as second trimester, which is perfectly normal.


Abdominal pain which is not labor

The sharp pain that shoots on the side of the abdomen is known as round ligament pain. This pain comes from the ligament that supports the uterus, attached to the pelvis. It happens because they get stretched as the uterus grows and the pain may also travel to the groin.


How do true Labor Contractions Feel Like?

True labor feels quite different for every woman and might even feel different from one pregnancy to the other. The labor contractions cause pressure and pain in the pelvis area and cause discomfort or ache in the back or lower abdomen area, which is why women feel the stress in their thighs and sides. This pain keeps coming and going at regular intervals and intensifies with time.


When to decide to call the doctor?

For this, you need to talk to the doctor during the early stage of your pregnancy and about what may or may not be normal and when you must give them a call.

If you are not sure about the feeling, call a doctor. They will always be available to answer your questions and discuss your concerns. You should never be hesitant to make that call.

Image source: Getty

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