Question about labor

29 posts / 0 new
Last post
elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981
Question about labor

Since we have been talking about it, at what point do you go to the hospital?

My water broke first and I was induced, so I didn't have 'labor' in the tradtional sense. What is typical for the contractions to be apart to make your way to the hospital/birthing center?

Our hosp is about 20 minutes away. My parents live in the town where it is, so I'm wondering if I would just go to there house to hang out till I get to that point. Truthfully, I'm so confused about this.

My fear is not making it in time to the hospital to assess what I can do (epidural, etc)

Joined: 10/12/04
Posts: 961

With Lucas my water broke so I went running to the hospital. Once I was there, they gave me pitocin because nothing was happening and once you get to the hospital they seem to just want to move you along.

This time my plan is to go hang out at SIL's house. I can see the hospital out her window so it's ideal! She's a teacher and done for summer so she's generally home. It will take 3 minutes to get to the hospital from her place so I am really hoping to roll in at the last minute and push. Wink ok, maybe not quite that close!!!!

Heatherbella's picture
Joined: 02/14/05
Posts: 4169

My midwife gave me a sheet listing when to call her and as far as contractions go it say to call when I can no longer ignore them. Like when I have to stop talking through them.

Joined: 03/07/05
Posts: 1595

It's kind of tricky, because labor really is different for everyone. With my first, I probably headed in a bit early, but it all worked out. Initially they told me to head in when my contractions where 5 minutes apart. Well, mine were only 5 minutes apart for an hour or two, and they were not real strong or that long, so they told me to wait. I ended up heading in when they were 3 minutes apart even though they were still only mildly strong, and not even lasting a full minute. They monitored me when I got to the hospital and even though I was cranking out contractions every 3 minutes they still were not convinced I was in labor. WEll, they told me to go walk in the halls... that's when things kicked into gear. I went from 2-5 cm in about a half hour! Looking back, I probably should have waited about another hour before heading in, but it worked out, and I didn't really know since it was my first. NOW... I know what it feels like when things really kick into gear, and I always have about 2-3 hours at least from that point. BUT, that's me. Everyone is different. I would say if you are unsure just call the hospital and see what they say. I did that with my first when the contractions were 5 minutes apart and they told me to wait. I'm glad I did, because if I had gone in an hour earlier, I probably would have got sent home because things were not quite intense yet.

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

"PCCGirl813" wrote:

With Lucas my water broke so I went running to the hospital. Once I was there, they gave me pitocin because nothing was happening and once you get to the hospital they seem to just want to move you along.

This time my plan is to go hang out at SIL's house. I can see the hospital out her window so it's ideal! She's a teacher and done for summer so she's generally home. It will take 3 minutes to get to the hospital from her place so I am really hoping to roll in at the last minute and push. Wink ok, maybe not quite that close!!!!

That is pretty much exactly what happened with DS. I think I will be doing the same at my parent's house. I could walk to the hospital if I needed to, lol!

Heatherbella's picture
Joined: 02/14/05
Posts: 4169

"PCCGirl813" wrote:

With Lucas my water broke so I went running to the hospital. Once I was there, they gave me pitocin because nothing was happening and once you get to the hospital they seem to just want to move you along.

That is SO true, isn't it? I'd almost not rush there the second it broke. Give yourself some times to start on your own.

Momma Leah's picture
Joined: 05/13/12
Posts: 1047

I'll be honest, I think each person and labor is different. My first two labors started when my water broke, pretty obvious. This time around the contractions started first and when my contractions start they just don't quit. We live 30 minutes away from the hospital, and DH honestly drove 90+ the whole way to the hospital. By the time I got here baby was already crowning. That being said most people don't labor as fast as I do and the nurses even said that they rarely have had people show up like I did! But I do understand where you are coming from. I was so scared that I wouldn't make it on time, but you also don't want to show up too early and be sitting at the hospital unnecessarily for hours on end!

sandraleigh's picture
Joined: 11/23/06
Posts: 2672

Yes, with DD my water broke, but I didn't even start contracting at all for about 3 hours after. They sent me back home to labour for about 7 more hours.....came back......still only 2 cm dilated. Ugh. Thankfully it picked up on it's own without pitocin that time.

My OB said not to wait too long because 4th babies could come a lot quicker than 1st babies. The hospital is 25 minutes from our place - before we moved here, we lived across the street from the hospital, so I wasn't worried about being there in time!

It's hard to say. I guess when I feel like 'it's time', I will just know. The OB said to come in even if I just have bloody show, but I doubt I would unless I was having heavy contractions as well.

Joined: 03/07/05
Posts: 1595

LOL Sandra, I've been having bloody show for the last 4 days!!

Clarkton's picture
Joined: 01/07/08
Posts: 1972

Yeah, it's tough to know...even for BTDT moms.

I went as soon as my water broke with DS1 but I was only 33 wks 1 day and figured they would likely attempt to intervene. Which they did and I didn't go into labor again until a couple days later after they took me off mag-sulfate. Once contractions started DS1 was born roughly 9 hrs later.

So I expected labor to not be too long with DS2. It started the same way, ruptured membranes but no noticeable contractions. They started up about 2ish hours later. I decided to take a shower and was getting a bit intense. When I got out of the shower I noticed he had dropped considerably...like my belly was way lower so that scared me a bit and I told DH let's go ASAP. Contractions were about 2 to 2.5 minutes apart on the way to the hospital. When I arrived, I think a little after 2 am, I was only 3 cm. But labor was staying pretty intense and since my water had broke they admitted me. He was born just after 6 am so I wasn't there a terribly long amount of time.

I figure I'll go at about the same with this one. Contractions pretty close together but more judging on how they feel. I'm about 15 or 20 minutes from the hospital so not too far but don't want to cut it super close either.

angelover02740's picture
Joined: 07/10/07
Posts: 1342

i agree tough to know. some girls tolerate pain more than others. I contracted at home for 3 hours. I only went into the hospital when i had loose stool, started shaking and had an urge to vomit. they say when that happens it our body transitioning into the next step of labor. I only lived 10 mins from the hospital. by the time i got there i was 4 cmm and 15 mins later my water broke on its on.

Joined: 10/12/04
Posts: 961

Just did a test run. Dropped kids with sil and headed to OB appt ( office as at the women's hospital). Six minutes and I caught the three minute red light so without it, I can get from door to door in 3 minutes. I'm feeling very good about my plan at this point!

pico83's picture
Joined: 09/06/06
Posts: 3014

:lurk:
Good luck! With my 2nd we were 20-30 min from the hospital and I was so worried about not making it in time. I was told to expect labor to be half the length of the first. Well, with my first my water broke and then I was induced (contractions never started, was 1cm) and DS1 was born 7 hours later, 15 hours after my water broke. DS2 the contractions started, I labored at home for a bit with DH keeping careful track and when the jumped from 6-10 min apart to 3-5 we headed in. I got there at 5cm and DS2 was born 2.5 hours later. My labor was again 7 hours start to finish, so definitely not twice as fast. The third my water broke, I contracted, and they stopped. So I was again eventually induced (at around 2cm) and DS3 was born 4-5 hours later, 22 hours after my water broke.

sandraleigh's picture
Joined: 11/23/06
Posts: 2672

So frustrating when every time is different!

Labour #1 was 23 hours. #2 was 12 hours. #3 was 10 hours. So they are by no means short labours. I doubt I would be any faster than 8 hours this time.

LaurenE's picture
Joined: 06/19/10
Posts: 854

I was induced with my first 2. With #3 I woke up at 5:30 not sure I was in labor. I had Malia about an hour later. Thankfully the hospital is 5 min away! I'm REALLY concerned I may not make it.

MJDttc's picture
Joined: 08/12/12
Posts: 1118

I was induced last time, so don't have any reference there. This time I am just going to hold out at home as long as possible, the midwife wants me to call when the contractions are 4-5 minutes apart or my water breaks just to keep an eye on the happenings then I guess they call ever so often or I call them, do phone support until I can't take it any longer or when I am feeling ready to go to the birthing center. Since I would like to use the tub some during labor (not wanting a water birth though) but I didn't take the stupid class, I will have to use my tub at home...

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

You can't use the tub there because you didn't take the class?

quonsetmom's picture
Joined: 10/10/12
Posts: 1559

I didn't post my birth story yet but...

Dd1 I was born 19 hrs after my water broke and Dd2 13 hrs after.

Heatherbella's picture
Joined: 02/14/05
Posts: 4169

I had a planned c-section with DD so I have ZERO clue what to expect this time. It's exciting and scary all at the same time!!!

I really don't want my water to break first. I feel like that makes you 'on the clock' or something.

Joined: 08/25/10
Posts: 385

First of all - water breaking only puts you "on the clock" if you are checked. If your water breaks and you're not in labor - stay away from the hospital, since they will check you and want to induce you quickly.

Usually active labor is considered contractions 5 minutes apart. You are going to have to listen to your body though since every one is different. With DD I labored for about 3 hours at home - but my contractions were every 2-3 minutes for over an hour already. By the time I got to the hospital and got checked in, I was only at a 4.5 and DD was born 5 hours later. (So 9 hours total with checking in) We were about 15 minutes away. I think it would have gone a bit faster had I had them break my water before 10cm.

This time around, although I'm not going to the hospital, my m/w is 30 minutes away. So I still have to think about when to call. She told me to call and let her know when they are 5 minutes apart, and we will see how I'm feeling. And when I have 3 really strong ones in a row pretty close together that sounds like it will be when she wants to come. But we're going to play it by ear.

If you find you're going from 5 min apart to 3 min apart pretty quickly, I would say head over. But when you're just starting at 5 it might be a little early.

akpufa's picture
Joined: 01/31/08
Posts: 3078

Having been induced with both of my other two not in active labor, I have no idea what I'll do IF I go into labor on my own with this baby. My first induction was about 14 hours from start to baby and my second was under 7 so we have no idea how this one will go induced or not. I'd probably head in as soon as contractions got painful enough that I was having trouble dealing with them - my hospital is 15-25 minutes away depending on time of day/traffic.

PatienceW's picture
Joined: 08/06/08
Posts: 857

I feel silly saying this but I have NO idea how long my labor was for DS. I went in with a migraine/extreme high blood pressure, so I had no concept of time. i know we went in late and it was after 11 when when we were told we were being induced (and I only remember htat because I remember calling mom and saying not to drive up to us because baby wouldnt be here til the next day anyway..they lived 1.5 hrs away). but to be honest I dont even know what day it was.... I just know how long I pushed for. That being said, Since I was induced for blood pressure I also feel clueless when it comes to everything labor wise. my water didnt break the drs broke it... I wasnt feeling contractions at first though they said I was having htem (based on the monitor) I do know Im having contractions now, but the whole water breakng worries me. I know a few people (one of which is a labor and delivery nurse) who thought their water had broken but it hadnt and they had just peed and didnt realize it. so how do you KNOW when it is def your water breaking? I would feel silly if I woke up in th emiddle of hte night and htought my water broke and in reality had just peed ya know? Im terrifeid becuase our hostpital is a half hour with NO traffic.... and literally nothing between here and there....I can totally see being one of those women on the news that had their kid in the car on the way.... but I also dont want to go too early to the hospital either. and DH thinks HE's stressed right now???

Danifo's picture
Joined: 09/07/10
Posts: 1377

"PatienceW" wrote:

the whole water breakng worries me. I know a few people (one of which is a labor and delivery nurse) who thought their water had broken but it hadnt and they had just peed and didnt realize it. so how do you KNOW when it is def your water breaking? I would feel silly if I woke up in th emiddle of hte night and htought my water broke and in reality had just peed ya know?

With my first it was a massive amount of water so there was no question. With my second, I was only 33 weeks and it felt like I let a little pee go/discharge. I was in denial but when it seemed regular for 20-30 minutes I called my dr and they told me to come in. I still expected it to be pee or excessive discharge because that happened to a few people on my birth board. We had just moved here so I was going to take DD1 with us because I expected to return home. My husband talked sense into me and we left her with the neighbours about 2 minutes before we left and went to the hospital. By the time I got to the hospital, I had accepted that my water had broken because I'd soaked through a pad and my shorts were wet.

If I was at term, I would wait until contractions started before going in until the 24 hour mark.
DD1 water broke first and contractions started right away. I went to the hospital at 5 minutes apart (4 hours later). I was only 2cm but I still had the baby 4 hours after that.

DD2 I was in the hospital because my water broke a few days before. I had no detectable contractions until the last 10 minutes but I was in pain for about an hour before they decided to send me to L&D and I had the baby less than 30 minutes later.

Go when you think you should go. One of my friends never had contractions closer than 7 minutes, even when pushing. My SIL had her water break at 8am and no contractions until 10pm. She even sent us an email at 9:40pm saying she was going into be induced the next day and was going to bed. Contractions started and she went to the hospital and she had the baby at 10:30pm.

Joined: 10/12/04
Posts: 961

When my water broke, it just kept flowing. There was no mistaking the difference between that and peeing. You can hold back pee if you squeeze, haha. Not so much when the water starts flowing.

Momma Leah's picture
Joined: 05/13/12
Posts: 1047

Yeah I totally agree, when your water breaks it is usually more that what would pee. And like stated you cannot stop your flow of water breaking like you can stop a stream of pee. And after the initial gush of water, you will still leak smaller amounts of fluid.

Heatherbella's picture
Joined: 02/14/05
Posts: 4169

Plus, apparently only 10% of people's water breaks before labour starts. Statistically speaking it's not likely to happen first.

LaurenE's picture
Joined: 06/19/10
Posts: 854

I felt a pop when my water broke with Malia, but it was during active labor and she came 6 min later.

elleon17's picture
Joined: 01/26/09
Posts: 1981

My water broke before labor started too. No confusion, I sneezed and it gushed out. Liking a strong pee that I couldn't stop from coming.

pico83's picture
Joined: 09/06/06
Posts: 3014

:lurk:
My water broke before labor with #1 and #3 but they were both small, high leaks. Both times I felt a pop, but with #1 there was no leak for 30+ minutes and when it came it was pink, so I knew it wasn't pee. With #3 I just kind of knew, even though I only leaked a tiny bit after the pop and they actually had to re-break my water as I was being induced that evening.
If in doubt, go in and they can do a swab to check.