What do braxton hicks feel like?

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Risstopher's picture
Joined: 02/29/12
Posts: 627
What do braxton hicks feel like?

I have never been pregnant before, and only about 2 times (one of them times being last night) this has happened... I woke up in the middle of the night with what felt like period cramps - slight though - not severe... I have no bleeding or fluid leakage and they come and go - and like I said, it's not severe... and the baby is moving about so i'm really not worried... i'm just curious, is this braxton hicks?

claireCJ's picture
Joined: 04/04/12
Posts: 742

Braxton Hicks have never really felt like cramping for me. They are more of a tightening sensation of the uterus. If you feel your uterus while you are having one, then it feels harder than normal. They aren't painful, but they aren't comfortable either.

Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night to a dull ache in my lower abdomen. It seems to happen in the middle of the night because I think that's when my muscles get tight because I am not using them or moving them for a long period of time. I have always attributed the pain to RLP: Round Ligament Pain. Everything is growing and stretching at a fairly rapid pase so all those muscles and my uterus get sore sometimes. That may be what you are experiencing.

Joined: 04/30/09
Posts: 2257

::Lurker::
BH contractions sort of range for me in how they feel. Most are just my uterus tightening (you can't press into it at all) and aren't that bad. Others are like you described where I'll get a little crampy and have the tightening as well.

Kier's picture
Joined: 03/12/12
Posts: 1973

The difference, for me, between BH's and my pre term contraction is pain and pressure. BH's are just a slight tightening, something I notice, but barely. The pre term contraction hurt... they wrap from around my back, across my belly, and hurt. Or, its a painful period type cramp down below. Also, another difference, is pattern.

Like Claire said, it also could be RLP. I get those a lot at night as well with trying to shift in my sleep. The third trimester is all about weight gain for baby, and our muscles take the tole Wink

Risstopher's picture
Joined: 02/29/12
Posts: 627

interesting! thanks ladies Smile
im starting to think maybe i just had to go to the bathroom, HA and since she is getting bigger maybe she was pressing on something - or again, RLP, because i have heard that from this week to about week 33 the baby grows a lot which means the belly grows.

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

I do get cramps on occasion and they're not like BHs. So far I've only gotten BHs from being super upset and emotional and again from my horrible coughing fits since I've been sick for 1.5 weeks now. Cramps are usually from (I'm guessing) bathroom related, baby position related, uterus growing yet again, or me over doing it...again.

Risstopher's picture
Joined: 02/29/12
Posts: 627

oh man that really stinks! i hope you start to feel better SOON!!!!!!! :bigarmhug:

i'm starting to think that mine is ending up being baby position/growth & bathroom.

Lyricly_'s picture
Joined: 03/04/12
Posts: 261

I wish I knew what to expect too on this one! Sometimes my belly gets tight however, when it is tight I feel his bum through my belly and it's just him sticking his butt out...

Kier's picture
Joined: 03/12/12
Posts: 1973

"Lyricly_" wrote:

I wish I knew what to expect too on this one! Sometimes my belly gets tight however, when it is tight I feel his bum through my belly and it's just him sticking his butt out...

could be a bit of both. I know all of my kids have loved to push out during a contraction lol

Astolate's picture
Joined: 07/16/06
Posts: 433

I've been having them a lot lately, sometimes they feel like cramps but usually they just feel like tightening in my back and it wraps around to my stomach. I know that my BH were a lot less frequent and intense with DS1 (my first pregnancy) and I think with him they were more like cramping, but very rare - I had them only a handful of times and mostly near the end.