How Do You Know You’re in Early Labor?

I’ve been having a bloody show for a week and having contractions for a week, but all I have is pain. When does labor start good? Am I in the early stage of labor?


Sometimes mothers experience an extended first stage of labor, often referred to as “prodromal labor.” They may have a show like you did, and experience contractions. This can last for days and kind be “on and off” – the contractions will come and go. Many mothers find it exhausting. Usually it’s building up to the actual labor. It sounds like this is what you’re experiencing.

The best thing to do in your case is to get as much REST as you possibly can. Prodromal labor can leave you exhausted when active labor begins, so it is best to take it easy. Sleep and nap as much as you can. Also make sure that you’re eating and especially drinking. Plenty of fluids are very important to your body now and during active labor. You’ll also feel better if you’re well-nourished.

Usually labor kicks in within several days of having a bloody show, though sometimes women will have a show a week or two before full labor.

If you feel like you’re at your limit with it, you can discuss a minor intervention with your doctor or midwife, such as breaking your water or sweeping the membranes – but if you’re able to eat, drink, and get rest I would just walk, clean the house, make love if you have a partner, and wait for full labor to kick in on its own. Best of luck!

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Handle Labor Pain

About the author 


Kristen is a pregnancy coach, student midwife, and a mama to 8 - all born naturally! I've spent nearly two decades helping mamas have healthy babies, give birth naturally, and enjoy the adventure of motherhood. Does complete support for a sacred birth and beautiful beginning for your baby resonate with you? Contact me today to chat about how powerful guidance and coaching can transform your pregnancy, birth, and mothering journey <3

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