Best Contraction Timer apps during Labor & Terms explained!

Is it time to go to the hospital? Are these contractions real or false? How do I know?!!best-contraction-timer-apps

The answer to all these questions lies in your contraction time.

The timing and frequency of your contractions is an essential indicator of what phase of labor you are in, and when you need to go to the hospital. You can either do it on a paper by writing down the start time and duration (in seconds) of your contractions and do the calculations yourself, or you can use your smartphone to download an app that will do these calculations for you.

The main thing separating “real” labor from “false” labor is that in true labor, your contractions will get progressively longer, stronger, and closer together.

Here are some of the terms that you may come across when you see a contraction timer app:

Continue reading

Questions Pregnant Women Should Ask on Their Hospital Tour

Most hospitals will be more than happy to give you a tour of their Maternity Floor and show off their latest offerings and developments. The tour also allows you to learn more about your hospital’s procedures and rules and get a picture of how your birthing and recovery room will look. And it’s the perfect opportunity to ask tons of questions. You may want to make sure these questions are somewhere on your list.

HospitalTourHow to Set Up a Hospital Tour:

A good time to tour the hospital is between week 30 and week 34 of pregnancy — but if you’re considering several options it’s best to schedule your first tour a few weeks earlier. Hospital tours are free, and setting one up is easy: Call the hospital or birthing center (or check its website to find the dates and times of upcoming tours) and reserve your spot. Some places even offer virtual tours on its website — but it’s best to opt for an in-person visit if you can swing it.

Continue reading

Pregnancy: Stages of labor – One Page Cheat Sheet

Learn the signs that baby is coming soon and the stages of labor.Stages of Labor

In many ways, your pregnancy is just like you: unique. Expect your labor and delivery to be just as personal and distinctive.

But that doesn’t mean everything that happens on that special day will be a surprise. No one can know exactly what will happen beforehand. But learn some of the basics now. It can help you be better prepared for your baby’s arrival.


Delivery nears

There are several signs that labor is weeks or days away, according to the American Pregnancy Association (APA). You may not notice every sign. But watch for:

  • Lightening. This happens when the baby drops or settles deeper in the pelvis. You’ll have less pressure on your diaphragm, so it’ll be easier to breathe. But there will be more pressure on your bladder, so you may have to use the bathroom more often.
  • Effacement. Usually in the final month or two, the cervix begins to thin and stretch. This allows for easier dilation during labor. While you won’t notice this, it’s something your health care provider can check during an exam.
  • Dilation. Also in the final couple of months, your health care provider may check to see how many centimeters your cervix has dilated. Ten centimeters is considered fully dilated. That means you’re ready to give birth.
  • Loss of the mucus plug. The mucus that has protected the cervical opening during pregnancy may come out days, hours or just minutes before labor begins. It may look stringy or appear as a clear, pink or blood-tinged discharge.
  • Membrane rupture. This is when your water breaks. Often this appears as a constant trickle. But some women experience a more sudden gush of fluid. You should contact your health care provider at this point, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG)

Continue reading

Hospital Bag Essentials – What to Pack (One Page Printable Checklist)

Wondering what are the absolute essentials you should take with you to the hospital?

Hospital-Bag-Must-haves

I was in the hospital for 18 hours of labor and 48 hours of stay in the Maternity ward with my newborn occasionally in the Nursery.

The most important lesson I had learned was that the hospital did provide some of the stuff, but when I got back and checked my insurance claim, I noticed that they had charged me for a few items I did not expect (like pacifiers and nipple shield). My insurance company paid for a part of it and I paid the rest from my pocket.

So the bottom line here is to call the hospital and the insurance company beforehand so you know how much you will end up paying. Neither of the two companies can give you an exact dollar amount (which is of course understandable, as no one knows how your labor and delivery will go and what you will end of needing or using), but do insist on getting a ballpark for various scenarios (c-section versus vaginal delivery, 48-hour maternity and newborn stay, material costs, etc. )

 

ABOUT THE HOSPITAL

  • Most hospitals will offer a facility tour before you deliver. Call ahead and schedule a Tour to familiarize yourself with the Check-in procedures, parking, Labor & Delivery room, Maternity room, Newborn nursery, etc.
  • Most hospitals also have guest Wi-Fi access, so you can make use of it fully to send out your Birth announcements, pictures, etc.
  • Bring some music along if you are interested.
  • You could also bring your labor assist devices like birthing balls, bath tub, etc.

 

HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST

So here’s a list of items that helped me through my 18 hours of labor and 48 hours of stay with my newborn on the maternity ward. Do plan on packing LIGHT! You will be moved a couple of times during your stay, and it would help to have everything you need in just one bag so you don’t have to make multiple trips.

Continue reading