View Full Version : When should I go to hospital?
I'm trying to keep intervention to a minimum and know that the later I leave it before going to the hospital the better my chances are. Is there any way of knowing how dilated you are (or your partner finding out lol)? Or is the frequency and severity of contractions the only way to know? :)
hey grubincubator :) (cute name!)
everyone's so different. i am amazed how many mums I know who, for their *first* babies, went straight into active (painful) labour. In that case, then you should be off to hospital I think (esp if the pain is bad and contractions are every close i.e., 3-4 mins or so). But if you read the text books, you "should" go like I did, which is very mild contractions for several hours (in my case 30!!) which only occur every 10 or 15 mins. Mine started at 10 and stayed that way til my waters were broken by the midwife.
I didn't even call the hospital until 26 hours after my first contraction because they were so tolerable (mild) that i wanted to be sure it **really was labour**(even tho I'd had a show and was 2 days over-due).
When i called them and asked 'when should i come in?' they basically said, whenever you want to. they said to come in, if and when, i wanted pain relief (which i didn't except gas) or just to have an examination. So 29 hours after the first contr'n i was feeling v impatient and that was the only reason we went in. Anyways, she did an examination (after waiting one hour in the waiting room and having a grumpy old nurse say to "are you labouring" as I looked so calm! :rolleyes: ). She said i had done well as I was already 4 cm ("well, that was easy!") but I didn't think I'd done anything really! Upon hearing that I could labour like this for another 24 hours or so, or have my waters broken and really get things going, I chose the latter (the lack of sleep was the major reason).
Well, it worked! Within 10 mins of her breaking them, the contr's were much much stronger and hurtier :eek: and 6 hours later DD was born.
Anyways, there's my story (boring really, no screaming and clawing at the passenger side window at passing motorists !!! though i've heard many women who were doing this on the way to hospital and said later they shouldn't have waited! Talk to your mum. Apparently womens' labours often progress very similarly to their mothers'. :p
I was only 3 minutes from the hospitasl - when I went I had a contraction, ran to the car & had a contraction out the front of the hospital again *lol*
I then laboured for another 23 hours!!!
I think the decision depends on how far away you live, how comfortab;e you are at home etc
If you want to stay home a while it is a good idea imho to have a person there who has been there and done that (for the comfort factor)
it just depends on the day - keep in touch with your hosp. & see how you go
not much help was I?
oh I meant to add that it is possible to see how dialated you are yourself - a good hb midwife would be the person with that info. from talks I had with other professionals they were very negative about the idea - but it is one of my regrets - letting them scare me about risk of infection due to examination (esp self exam) but thats a very very low risk compared to having cs due to ingnorance & oiir decision making (which is what eventually happened to me)
go the self exploration!!! (having said that due to another seriously painful medical problem arising during my labour I wasn't in fit state to do any examinig & my DH was in too much shock too!!!!
Ihope that helps
Thanks for that Kat. I must remember to quiz my doula about self-examination. I do NOT want to arrive ast hospital too early. Or too late for that matter...
hi good luck with your impending birth! just thought id add that if your water breaks go straight to hospital, even if you havnt had any contractions as you are then at risk of infection and they will want you to stay to keep an eye on things and probably get things going if nothing else is happening. if your water doesnt break stay home for as long as you feel comftable doing so, if you are scared, in alot of pain etc then go with your instincts and head to hospital
Firstly, what a great name! My DS has the nickname Grub, only because he wriggles and squirms and looks like a grub in his sleeping bag!
My advice is to labour at home for as long as you feel comfortable. I laboured for about 17 hours at home, remained active, long walks, showers etc, until it became too uncomfortable, and trust me, you'll know! By the time I got to the birth centre, I was already 6 cm dilated. Bearing that in mind, by regular timing of contractions, if they are coming are hard and fast, head straight in , you may have a quick labour on your hands! I guess you just have to listen to your body, it will tell you when is good time to get going. Also bearing in mind the geographics of the hospital and the time of day/night, although most labours happen at night, that's the nature of the beast, but be careful it's not peak hour or anything!
Finally, good luck with your imminent birth, let go, your body knows what to do.......and enjoy!!! ;)
Thankyou to all for your answers. I have managed to find information regarding the checking your own progress during labour. I've got a copy of "The Pink Kit" (has anyone else heard of this - I highly recommend it!) and the audio tape describes how it's done. :D
It also has the how-to of perineal massage both with a partner and flying solo. Quite disturbing really. Although if you're ever going to get over such shyness pregnancy and birth is definitely the time. :eek:
i highly recommend perineal stretching. i did it religiously for the last few weeks (in the bath/shower is best) and i didn't need stitches and I'm sure this is why.
yes, it should hurt!! just practise your breathing while you do it!! :p
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