Your baby is all grown up! It’s ready to be born. Its head is in your pelvis. When its head is deeply inserted into the bony pelvis so that less than one fifth is palpable above your bikini line your doctors consider as “engaged”. Your baby’s head dilates your cervix better than its bottom.
Brakston Hicks contractions are there. Just don’t worry about them. You feel tired of urinating so often. You are now just about had enough! SO you get ready to go to hospital at a moment’s notice. You keep your bags packed. You arrange transport for use in case of an emergency.
Get to know what normal vaginal delivery and C-section means. Once you have pains your doctor will arrange a CTG to check if your baby is doing well. Then he will do a vaginal examination and assess a few things. He will comment on how much your cervix has dilated, the length of your cervix, the position of your cervix, consistency of your cervix and how far down the baby’s head has come. Dilatation of your cervix occurs in 2 stages. Latent phase is from 1cm to 4cm. Active phase is from 4cm to 10cm. When you cervix is dilated 10cm it is fully dilated and delivery is imminent. Your cervix shortens as labor progresses. Your doctor will break the water bag and start oxytocin drip to get things going, if you do not go into labor spontaneously. You and your baby will be monitored closely all through the delivery and at the end you will get to hold your bundle of joy for the first time.
Go to the hospital immediately if your water breaks, you start bleeding or you start getting string regular contractions. Do not wait. It is much easier and safer to be at hospital from early labor than to have to face an emergency by delaying too long.
Do not eat or drink anything just before you leave for hospital. Loved ones will express doubts about hospital food and try to feed you things just before you come. Imagine a situation where you have to undergo emergency C-section due to an emergency. Surgeries need you to be at least 4 hours fasting. In such a situation risks are higher.