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  1. #11
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    With my 1st labour, I thought it was a false alarm because it took quite a few hours for the contractions to become really painful and they didn't seem very regular.

    I got DP to record the time and length of each contraction for an hour or two before I realised that they'd moved from 15mins to 8 mins apart and were regular. I counted my labour from when DP started recording.

    With my other 2, I thought "Oh, this feels familiar!" and just knew, and started timing from then.

    I'd suggest that once you get a couple of braxton hicks that hurt a bit, check the time and, if you're unsure, write down the time each one starts to see if there's a pattern. (Of course if your labour is progressing quickly, you'll know straight away!)
    Last edited by 1234Guest; 25-01-2012 at 10:18.

  2. #12
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    With DS1 i started getting regular 5min contractions from 33wks onwards (and he was born at 41+2wks, so iwas not in labour for 8wks). So i count from when it started to really hurt.

    Midwives count from 4cm dilated i think.

    So by my theory my labour with DS1 was 22hrs (6hrs from 4cm) and with DS2 3hrs from first painful contraction to baby (1.5hrs from 4cm)

  3. #13
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    When the hospital recorded the length of my labour they went from 'active labour' - strong contractions 2 mins apart. Based on that my labour was just under 6 hours. If I counted from first contraction (which I didn't know at the time was labour) it would have been around 11 hours.

    Everyone says you will just know when you're in labour. For me it wasn't until contractions were too painful to sit through and 2 mins apart that I realised that was it - I'd be having a baby very soon! I'd been having mild contractions a good 4 or 5 hours before that, but I fobbed them off as just late pregnancy aches and pains.

  4. #14
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    I always counted mine from when I was in active labour, as that is what was written on my medical document. And pretty much the moment I did hit active labor did everything sudden take off.

  5. #15
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    I timed from active labour, which was 5hours with my first, 20min with my second. Before the active labour started, I had some mild contractions, hind water leak, I knew labour was nearing, but didn't include all that.

  6. #16
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    I usually say 30 hours - that's from contractions being regular and 5 min or less apart (had them building for three hours previous and it was only then that they were regular and getting closer together). I checked in at the hospital when they were 3 min apart (to find out I was only 1/2 cm dilated). I definitely count before 4cm, as it was nearly 24 hours and having my waters broken before I made it to 4cm (and still another 7 hours before she came). But, yes, I had also heard 'active labour' is from 4cm.

    I knew within 3 hours that it was definitely labour - I didn't have one strong contraction and go 'Right, this is it'.

  7. #17
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    I think most women count from their first contraction (in hindsight, because you often don't realise at the time that its actually all systems go). Hospitals/caregivers tend to count from 'active' labour, which for my hospital was regular established contractions at least 5 minutes apart.

    My hospital paperwork says 29 hours, my count is more like 35

  8. #18
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    I count from when I first notice contractions are real (you just know, you truly do).

    So my first 14 hours (contractions started first)

    Second 8 hours labour but 13 hours after my water broke (I had tightenings for 5 hours but I could sleep through them so don't count them).

    My 3rd 25 hours...the contractions woke me up and they were all over the place due to his position but his position is what made the labour longer than my others...the labour was still real.

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    if i count from when contractions start it is 4hours but i think the hospital counted from when i was having 4 contractions in 10minutes which would make it a 2hour labour.

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    My SIL counted hers from when her contractions started and it took her 3 days. Unfortunately my nephew suffered from low blood sugars and had to be taken to the special care unit immediately

    Sure hope mine isn't anywhere near as long.


 

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