information and symptoms for Braxton-Hicks Contractions
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Relief from Braxton-Hicks Contractions

Braxton-Hicks contractions occur throughout pregnancy and are a normal part of the process. Everyone feels the false labor differently and handles the contractions in differing degrees. A lot has to do with a person’s perception of pain and the level at which pain or discomfort becomes difficult to control or becomes unacceptable. Many women have a high level of pain acceptance. It has been suggested that this is due to the fact that she will have to endure childbirth. Childbirth takes a great deal of energy and concentration.

The months before a woman goes into true labor are spent in preparation for this daunting task. There are many ways to prepare for the hours of hard work that will produce a wonderful miracle of the birth of one’s offspring. The two parents help and share the moments leading to the upcoming event while preparing mentally and physically for the change in their relationship. Although they cannot be ‘cured’, Braxton-Hicks contractions are manageable. Throughout the months of pregnancy a woman’s body experiences dramatic changes , both physically and emotionally. Hormonal changes increase and decrease and cause fluctuations in usually physically stable organs and body functions.

The increased weight and stress on the spinal column and balance are all involved in pregnancy. Many of these aspects of pregnancy can cause discomfort and in some women, intense pain. Braxton-Hicks contractions although they are a normal process during pregnancy can cause distress and loss of energy in a usually active woman. Although the contractions are self-limiting and do subside within thirty to sixty seconds, they can be disturbing and unpleasant while they last. It has been noted that dehydration can increase the intensity of Braxton-Hicks contractions.

Therefore, increased hydration and especially increasing water intake is advised during pregnancy. When the Braxton-Hicks contractions begin and start to increase in intensity, moving or walking around can decrease the discomfort. If they begin while lying down, turning on the left side can help to decrease pain. To soften the symptoms to a slow crescendo try meditation or imagery and choose a comfortable position before doing any activity such as meditation. Relaxation techniques have been noted to be very helpful. Deep breathing and pursed breathing also help. These exercises are also helpful as they can prepare the pregnant woman for actual labor and delivery. Practicing these techniques for relaxation and control of physical discomfort will assist and prepare a woman for the task ahead of her. The delivery of her baby will be a wonderful moment and the burden of labor will hold in memory the most miraculous and important event in a life.

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