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You must first know the 3 major signs of labour which are:

A. Painful rythmic contraction that comes 3 in 10 minutes
B. Breakage of your water (amniotic fluid) draining
C. "SHOW" i.e mixture of thick catarrh and little blood (this serves as a plug to hold your cervix together for the duration of your pregnancy.

"It can take many hours, or even days, before you're in established labour. Established labour is when your cervix has dilated to more than 3cm and regular contractions are opening the cervix. ... This helps your baby move down into the pelvis and the cervix to dilate more". mother of the bride casual dresses

This is called latent phase, it's a good idea to have something to eat and drink as you'll need the energy once labour is established.

If your labour starts at night, try to stay comfortable and relaxed. Sleep if you can.

If your labour starts during the day, keep upright and gently active. This helps your baby move down into the pelvis and the cervix to dilate.

Breathing exercises, massage and having a warm bath or shower may help ease pain during this early stage of labour.

1. When your contractions are regular and coming about 3 in every 10 minutes.
2. Your waters breaks (make sure you use your lady sept pad and not always pad or toilet roll please.
3. Your contractions are very strong and you feel you need pain relief.
4. You see show (mixture of thick catarrh and little blood)
5. You're worried about anything, then you need to head straight to the hospital.

Once you get to the hospital and you are checked and told you are in labour, call your husband to bring your bag that you've already packed for things you are going to need in labour and post delivery.

Your midwife will be conducting a vagina examination every 4 hours to ascertain the descent of the presenting part, cervical dialation in cm.

Labour is measured in cm and you will get to 10cm before your baby can pass through and ready to be born.

Your midwife will monitor you and your baby throughout labour to make sure you're both coping well.

This will include using a small handheld device to listen to your baby's heart every 15 minutes. Your Blood pressure too will be monitored. You will be encouraged to pass urine as often as you wish.

Once you start feeling the urge to push, your Midwife will instruct you on how to push and relax at intervals.

Once the head of your baby is out, the midwife will ask you to stop pushing. She will check for cord round the neck of your baby before asking you to push again while she delivers the baby towards your abdomen. She can put your baby to breast immediately.

Once the baby is separated from you by cutting the cord, your placenta is then delivered, you are cleaned up and ready to unite with your baby.