Labour is final stage of the pregnancy term that leads to the delivery of the baby. The labour begins with contractions leading to the dilation of the cervix and the eventual birth of the baby. Preterm labour occurs when regular contractions result in the opening of your cervix after week 20 and before week 37 of pregnancy and can lead to a pre-mature birth of the baby.
The specific cause of preterm labour often isn’t clear. Certain risk factors might increase the risk, but preterm labour can also occur in pregnant women with no known risk factors.
Symptoms of Preterm Labour
- Frequent contractions
- Constant backache
- Mild abdominal cramping
- Vaginal bleeding
- Increased abdominal/pelvic pressure
Risk Factors of Preterm Labour
- Previous preterm labour or premature birth
- Multiple Foetuses
- Being underweight prior to pregnancy
- Smoking during pregnancy
- Physical injury or trauma
Complications of preterm labour include delivering a preterm baby, which increases the number of health concerns for your baby. Preterm labour is preventable with adequate & regular prenatal care, taking a healthy diet, avoiding smoking & narcotics during pregnancy, having sufficient space between two pregnancies amongst others.