Braxton Hicks — The Bump
February 2016 Moms

Braxton Hicks

I've been having contractions for the past few days. I'm pretty certain they're just Braxton Hicks with a few real ones in for good measure. My question, for those of you with experience with BH is, how long does a BH contraction usually last. Some of these are lasting 2-3 minutes.

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Re: Braxton Hicks

  • I've been having two types since 27 weeks. The "period like cramps" contractions and Braxton hicks. The Braxton hicks have varied so much, 30seconds to over a minute, maybe even two minutes. I just assumed the variation was fine, since they've been doing NSTs since 28 weeks and I've been monitored at the hospital, had to get the steroid shot to help her lungs along, and they seemed only concerned with the amount of them and not the length.
  • I've been having a ton of them since around 24wks, and they're starting to get pretty intense sometimes (can't walk through them, hard to catch my breath, etc).

    They usually last 30-45 seconds. My MW said that if they're consistently over 1 minute and timetable (i.e. consistently x minutes apart), then they want to know about them.

    How many weeks are you? My MW said after 36w, they stop caring about them at all, since they won't do anything to prevent labor at that stage. She said it was iffy that they'd even do anything now at 34wks.

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  • Also, are they lasting a full 2-3 or is it lingering tenderness/crampy feeling? You'll be able to tell by feeling your uterine tone.

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  • @VitaLuna I'm 34 weeks and 4 days. I called L&D Tuesday because I'd had 6 in an hour and they said don't come in until there was 10 an hour. I had an appointment with my OB Wednesday and she said to go in if there are more than 6 an hour. They do get pretty intense - needing to take deep breaths, can't walk. Some of them wrap around to my back, too.

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    mamacastro
  • VitaLuna said:
    Also, are they lasting a full 2-3 or is it lingering tenderness/crampy feeling? You'll be able to tell by feeling your uterine tone.
    No, like full on tight belly for 2-3 minutes.

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  • @DrillSergeantCat it is suppose to be 6 in an hour and if they don't go away with water or changing position then you are suppose to go to L&D. I know this because its happened to me twice and they stopped the contractions with medicine to prevent preterm labor. My doctor just confirmed this again today so just keep monitoring yourself, write them down if you have to to make sure
    cbou
  • Mine feel like they last hours when they happen but I can go days without feeling. My tummy gets so tight and it's really painful and uncomfortable. It's been happening since 30 weeks. The doctor didn't care nor did the midwife.
  • @mamacastro they go away when I lay down. I'm using my app now to track them.

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    mamacastro
  • Ok good, take care of yourself :)
  • @mamacastro I'm worried they're going to put me on bed rest if they don't stop.

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    mamacastro
  • They might or at least light duty since you're already past 35 weeks right? You still working? Doc might say to stop or at least cut back. Today if I had been working my doctor said he would have made me stop
  • Almost, 34w4d. I have a desk job. I've already talked to my boss about needing to leave early sometimes. 

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  • edited January 2016
    There is a definite difference between real and practice, but it's hard to explain and sometimes that line is a little blurry so it's so hard to tell sometimes. I actually just got out of the hospital after spending the week there for pre-term labour. They've let me go and I'm still crampy, but it's a different crampy.. So hard to explain ha. Like a pp said, they told me their main concern is if they keep coming regularly, even after water and position changes. But if yours are wrapping around your body, are at all regular, or pretty painful, you could definitely head to labour and delivery. They can hook you up to the monitors and will be able to give you a pretty good idea of whether the contractions/pains you are feeling are cause for concern or not. That way you can have a little piece of mind in all this unknown.
    Baby #3 due February. Dx with Spina Bifida Myelo  "good things are coming down the road, just don't stop walking"
    mamacastro
  • My BHs have been lasting anywhere between 30 seconds to 1-2 minutes but not painful at all. They were never rhythmic and always went away when I lay down. Try to take it easy! 

    I am 35 weeks today and at my appoint on tuesday, dr. said that if I go into labor now, they wouldn't stop it. But they may still put you on a bedrest, since it is better for the baby to stay in there longer. Hang in there, and hope it stops!  I have been having only non painful BHs until last night, I had really painful contractions 10 mins apart for 2 hours but never progressed or got closer and eventually stopped. I am having more painful ones on and off but not regularly today. I think if it goes on, I will probably call the doctor tomorrow and see what they say. 
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    mamacastroDrillSergeantCat
  • I'm on bed rest as of today and the OB thinks baby girl is coming one way or another in the next week. We actually thought it was go time last night but by 2 or 3 am the contractions had stopped. My BP is starting to creep up so she's putting on bed rest, Tuesday I get another u/s and they are taking labs but it might be go day. I'm 37 weeks tomorrow.
  • @VitaLuna I'm 34 weeks and 4 days. I called L&D Tuesday because I'd had 6 in an hour and they said don't come in until there was 10 an hour. I had an appointment with my OB Wednesday and she said to go in if there are more than 6 an hour. They do get pretty intense - needing to take deep breaths, can't walk. Some of them wrap around to my back, too.

    I'm in the same boat. I've had them 8 min apart three times in the last two weeks, lasting 2-3hrs. I never went in, but all my visit summaries say to call if more than 4-6/hr that don't go away with water/rest. My MW acted like it was NBD when I mentioned it at my spot. I work a very physically demanding job, have had major SPD pain and BHs, and while she says she thinks my "body is trying to tell me to be done with work", she won't write me out of work. So I'm stuck dealing will all this crap PLUS work because I can't afford to take no pay and cut into my FMLA. (If she were to write me out, I'd get STD after two weeks). Bah humbug.

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  • edited January 2016
    My STD will go 13 weeks. If I were to be put in bed rest now, I'd still have enough time to cover maternity leave.

    edited because the app hates me.

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  • PaniaOPaniaO member
    edited January 2016
    My BHCs definitely last longer than a minute sometimes, especially in the evening. I have tons and have been for a couple of weeks. Definitely not labor. ETA: my doctor has witnessed them and is not fazed at all.
    S & A married 8.12.2013
    Expecting Saulie O 2.12.2016
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  • VitaLunaVitaLuna member
    edited January 2016
    I'm hoping all these BHs at least mean I'll go into spontaneous labor and won't need any induction/augmentation. They better be good for something, right??

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    DrillSergeantCatpurplepenguin3Life is Excitingmbrowling
  • @DrillSergeantCat  my dr. said 5 in an hour and call, so I think you are doing the right thing. Since you are at a desk job and probably can't lay down at work ;) are you able to put your feet up? Maybe drinking some more water too and leaning back. Hoping this starts to get better for you!

    DrillSergeantCat
  • @DrillSergeantCat I have been having something very similar and last week the dr hooked me up to the monitor and when I had a strong one she took me out of work immediately. I also have a desk job, currently, and sitting was when they would come on the worst. I'm not on bed rest exactly, but my dr told me to relax as much as possible because those are the types contractions, or BH's, that will put me into labor. I'm 35 weeks today and have been off for a week now and being able to lay down and relax through them has helped out.
    DrillSergeantCat
  • Alright...these are starting to feel like my uterus is being ripped out of my body. 

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  • @DrillSergeantCat  any update?  did you go to the hospital?  
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  • No, I'm too stubborn for that @purplepenguin3. I drank some water and walked a little bit. I'm still having the BH contractions but it no longer feels like my uterus is being ripped out.

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  • Well that's good at least @DrillSergeantCat nobody wants to feel that way! Take it easy and keep that little one in there!  Those dang BH can just suck sometimes.  I have a desk job too and some days are just worse than others.  
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    DrillSergeantCat
  • @DrillSergeantCat hang in there, those dang BH can be so uncomfortable especially when you can't be in the comforts of your own home. If those really painful ones (uterus ripping ones) come back I'd call the dr just to be sure.

  • @lilqt3929 I think they're worse today just because I slept horribly last night. Once I get off work, I'm going to lay down and take a nap.

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  • If I am on my feet too long my uterus tightens and doesn't relax until I sit back down. Most of the time it is just uncomfortable, but sometimes I get lower back pain or feel crampy. They last as long as I'm standing and stop when I'm sitting, so they can be 20 minutes long and I can get 10 an hour. Or I can sit still and have none. The doctor said as long as they aren't regular and I can make them stop then she isn't worried. I'm 33+6. She said I likely have an irritable uterus.
    DrillSergeantCatmamacastrorainbowminionPaniaO
  • Also, drink lots of water!
  • My midwife recommended supplement called, Calm that has calcium & magnesium, Epsom salt baths, rest, and LOTS of water. Maybe you can try some of those things if you haven't already. I hope they ease up!
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  • These have been mine for the morning, not really painful at all.
  • summererdvigsummererdvig member
    edited January 2016
    Hey Mamas!! I'm not sure if there is a better thread I can post on, but at as FTM I'm not really sure if the discomfort I feel at night is BH or not. It kind of feels like my stomach muscles are being tightly pulled. Ithey don't really hurt unless I try to move. For example, when I get up in the middle of the night to pee, if I am having this "tightening" it's hard to get out of bed and crease my stomach at all without being in extreme discomfort.

    I was under the impression that actual contractions feel like extremely periods/bathroom cramps and these don't feel like that. They just feel like my stomach is being pulled super tight. I've tried googling it, but can't really tell if that's what's these are. Does any one else have anything like this going on? Mine are only at night, it's so strange!!!!!

  • @summererdvig Mine are at the opposite time. Mine are during the day unless I'm laying down. Isn't pregnancy fun?

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  • @DrillSergeantCat super fun!!! You're still having yours? When are you due?

    Maybe all of this "practice" will make the real thing a little easier on us...lets hope lol
  • @summererdvig I am but they've slowed wayyyy down. I spent a lot of time in bed this weekend resting and that seems to have helped. I'm due 2/21 but we're not sure he's going to stay in until then. I'm hoping all the practice makes perfect.

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  • Ahh I'm 2/22 @DrillSergeantCat but my LO isn't showing any signs of leaving any time soon. She's head down, but hasn't made her way down quite yet. Best of luck to you and baby!
    DrillSergeantCat
  • Mine are opposite as well. I get them real bad when I'm up moving around during the day or even just standing on my feet. The only time they slow down is if I'm laying/sitting with my feet up. My due date isn't until 2/25 so I'm hoping he will stay in there a little while yet but I have a feeling I won't make it till then if these keep up. But let's hope this practice does make it easier. Haha. Wouldn't that be nice!
    DrillSergeantCatsummererdvigEmAnn16
  • I notice mine the most if I stand up after sitting for quite a while, standing in general is what seems to bring them on most. I do seem to get them in any position though. So far they aren't too uncomfortable, but I swear every time I have on I have to pee! I think I'm getting them about every half hour to hour at this point, at least when I'm awake and paying attention.
  • I notice mine the most if I stand up after sitting for quite a while, standing in general is what seems to bring them on most. I do seem to get them in any position though. So far they aren't too uncomfortable, but I swear every time I have on I have to pee! I think I'm getting them about every half hour to hour at this point, at least when I'm awake and paying attention.

    I'm glad to hear that others are experiencing them that frequently too, I was starting to wonder if it was normal.

    Kimbarbour08
  • @summererdvig sounds like they could be BHs, but hard to say. depending on the intensity, BHs aren't necessarily uncomfortable sometimes, just annoying. Poke around on your belly to get a feel for what your uterus usually feels like, then poke around when you're having those tightening sensations. If it's a contraction, you should be able to feel the difference.

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    summererdvig
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