In simple words, premature labour occurs before the week of 37 during pregnancy. It may occur between the 20th – 30th week of gestation. Uterine contractions lead the cervix to open. The cervix is the tunnel-like, muscular and narrow end of the uterus. Contact your healthcare provider if you experience signs like back pain, vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain, or frequent contractions.
Be sure you do not miss scheduled prenatal care. Delivery before the due date can put a baby at several health risks. Doctors rule out this condition through a cervix exam. The build-up of excessive amniotic fluid also increases the possibility of preterm labor. Seek guidance from the leading obstetrician and IVF specialist in Siliguri.
Get insights into the signs of premature labour:
- Frequent or four contractions in one hour
- Lower abdominal cramping
- Lower abdominal pain that feels like a gas pain
- Ongoing menstrual-like cramping
- Vaginal fluid leakage
- Vaginal bleeding
- Pelvic pressure
- Vaginal spotting
- Reduced fetal movements
Contact your healthcare provider without delay so that you can prevent any complications. An obstetrician always provides expectant mothers with apt guidance.
Risk factors for premature labour:
There’re several risk factors for preterm labour. However, the exact cause of it is still unknown.
- A short cervix may be a result of an insufficient cervix, abnormalities of the cervix, trauma, or heredity can cause premature labour
- Excessive amniotic fluid in the uterus tends to create pressure on the nearby organs, leading to premature labor, known as polyhydramnios or difficult delivery
- Recent pregnancy with premature labor may put you at the same risk
- Smoking may result in premature rupture of membranes, obstruct fetal growth, and put you at risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, infant morbidity
- Birth defects can be a potential risk factor for preterm labour and low birth weight
- Multiple pregnancies or pregnancies with twins due to excessive uterine distension may increase the chance of early labour
- Problems with the uterus
- Issues concerning placenta
- Younger maternal age
- Older maternal age
- High blood pressure
- High blood pressure during pregnancy
- Autoimmune disease
- Pre-existing diabetes
- Diabetes during pregnancy
- Drug misuse/substance dependency
- Vaginal bleeding during pregnancy
- The next pregnancy with less than 12 months of interval
- Mental stress
Things you should take into consideration in order to prevent the risk of premature labour include – eating healthy, having quality sleep, managing stress, maintaining body weight, going for every prenatal checkup, ensuring pregnancy spacing, and keeping pre-existing health conditions in check.
Your healthcare provider may go for a pelvic exam and review your medical history with the symptoms you’re experiencing now. Further tests/clinical procedures may include blood tests, uterine monitoring, ultrasound of the cervix, a swab of the vaginal secretion, etc. Based on your test reports, the doctor sets up your treatment if required.