You’ve probably already felt some Braxton Hicks Contractions, and they will only get stronger as you get closer to your due date. But what are the differences between real contractions and Braxton Hicks?
Not long to go
It’s almost time – but your baby still has a few things on their to-do list: Grow, grow, grow!
During week 36 of your pregnancy, your baby will grow to measure around 47 centimetres from head to toe and weigh approximately 3000 grams. Remember that all babies grow differently, so your baby might measure more or less than this.
When do you want to tell friends and family the happy news?
Have you talked about how and when you want to let family and friends know about the labor and delivery? It can be a good idea to agree on the timing and type of announcement you want to make beforehand. For example, if you or your partner want to keep the birth a secret until after the baby is born, make sure to agree on that now, before you go into labor. If you want to let your family know that you are going into labor, it can be a good idea to prep them a little beforehand so they know how to handle the information; they can’t expect you to answer 20 calls or text messages during labor – you or your partner can answer, when you have the time and energy to do so.
You can also plan for your parents to act as a filter between you and the rest of the family. You probably have many curious family members who want to know about the labor and delivery, so give your parents the information, and let them pass it on while you focus on more important things.
Let’s play “Contractions or Braxton Hicks.”
Now that you’re in week 36 of your pregnancy, with only a month to go before your due date, your Braxton Hicks contractions can intensify and start to feel unpleasant. Braxton Hicks contractions are your body’s way of preparing for the upcoming labor and birth, so while they might feel inconvenient, they’re there for a reason.
If you worry you might be going into early labor, you should always call your doctor or midwife to be certain. There are some key differences between Braxton Hicks and real contractions:
- Braxton Hicks contractions are irregular, while real contractions become regular and come in closer intervals.
- Real contractions get progressively stronger, while Braxton Hicks contractions can often be soothed with a warm bath or a heating pad.
- Braxton Hicks contractions can be unpleasant but should not be painful; if you experience unusual pain, contact your doctor or midwife for a check-up.