Do Braxton Hicks Contractions Start In The Second Trimester?
Believe it or not but Braxton Hicks contractions may begin as early as the second trimester of your pregnancy. The following information will help you better understand what Braxton Hicks contractions are and how they occur.
Generally Braxton Hicks contractions mark the third trimester but they are not uncommon in the second trimester. These contractions occur when your uterine muscles contract for 30 to 60 seconds. Some Braxton Hicks contractions last up to two minutes. These are not real labor contractions so dont panic. Instead, these are practice contractions and it is just your bodys way of getting ready for labor when it is time.
You will be able to tell the difference between Braxton Hicks contractions and real ones because Braxton Hicks are non rhythmic, infrequent, irregular, unpredictable, do not change, are not painful, may disappear with rest, and are basically uncomfortable. If your contractions do not continue to strengthen then they probably arent real contractions and you should just sit back and relax.
Braxton Hicks contractions are caused by the uterine muscle contracting in an attempt to tone itself before the big day. It is not believed that Braxton Hicks contractions affect the cervix or dilation yet it may assist in softening the cervix. Once Braxton Hicks contractions increase in strength, however, they may be considered false labor and actually assist with dilation and effacement.
Braxton Hicks contractions may be caused by dehydration, stimulation of the belly, after intercourse, when your bladder is full, and if/when your baby is moving around a lot.
If you dont like Braxton Hicks contractions or they are making you uncomfortable then you should try relaxing in a warm bath for half an hour to see if they taper off. Many times just changing positions is enough to get them to go away. Do the opposite of what you have been doing to see if they stop. Drink several glasses of water if you feel dehydration is the key to your Braxton Hicks contractions. If you cannot alleviate your Braxton Hicks contractions and they continue getting stronger then you should contact your doctor immediately.