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Medical Advice For Pregnant Women: Things You Need To Know Before Going To Hospital

You have your baby bag packed, your birth plan in hand and your cell phone fully charged so you can notify everyone of baby's impending arrival. You are on your way out the door to the hospital to deliver your baby, either because you're in labor or because you have been scheduled for an induction or C-section. Here are a few things to know before you put on that hospital gown:

Everything won't go exactly as planned.

Something is going to happen to interfere with your picture-perfect plan. Trust me, it doesn't matter.

Yes, you have a birth plan. Yes, you have an ob/gyn you adore, a partner who is there to fully support you, family and friends who are holding down the fort and taking care of whatever needs to be managed at home. But just like a wedding, there is always something that doesn't go as planned during the birth of a baby.

Whether it's your doctor being suddenly unavailable because of an emergency, your partner being unexpectedly out of town for work or a hurricane threatening the coast while your baby is crowning—something is going to happen to interfere with your picture-perfect plan. Trust me, it doesn't matter. Really. Let it go, focus on what's important (taking care of yourself and delivering a healthy baby) and roll with it.

The nurses are your friends.

Depending on what time of day you go to the hospital, you will have at least one, possibly two, shifts of labor and delivery nurses overseeing your progress. Get to know them. Remember their names and let them get to know you. Yes, you may be in labor and not exactly feeling chatty, but these are the people who are going to be taking care of you.

You will get excellent care regardless of how you treat the nurses, but if you are polite, patient and perhaps bring a basket of muffins or snacks for them to share at the nursing station, you will be remembered—and they will go the extra mile to accommodate you.

Your birth plan isn't written in stone, so be flexible.

Just like the circumstances leading up to your baby's birth, there are things that won't go as planned even though you've written them down and handed out copies to everyone. Having a baby may be natural, but it's also unpredictable. In my case, my birth plan changed so many times before I had my first son, I actually gave up on it. I started out wanting an unmedicated delivery, then ended up being scheduled for an induction and finally required a C-section when the induction didn't work. There was very little about my original birth plan that went as planned and I stressed out about it more than I should have because I still achieved my end goal: Deliver a healthy baby boy and bring him home.

Don't overpack.

Look at your packed bag(s) by the door. Does it look like you're going on a two-week vacation? Unpack them and try again. Pack what you know you will absolutely need for the first eight to 12 hours in the hospital. Then enlist the services of a friend or family member who can bring you whatever else you might need, should the circumstances change while you're in the hospital.

Some women do overpacke horribly, bringing far more stuff than they could possibly use and requiring their husband to make three trips to the car just to bring everything home.

Some will ask when is the right time to head to the hospital as a pregnant woman, well it can be tricky to decide when to head for the hospital for labor, especially if you're not sure that you are in labor. As you get closer to the end of your pregnancy, you'll want to be able to tell the difference between false labor and true labor and identify the transition from early labor to active labor.

The stages of labor you’ll experience at home are early labor and the beginning of active labor. The early stage is the longest stage, and this is when you will begin to experience contractions. Once you start to notice signs that you are transitioning into active labor (your contractions are getting stronger and more frequent, for example), it’s time to head to the hospital.

After your water breaks, the time it will take for your labor to progress to delivery can vary, but the risk of infection increases if you do not give birth within 24 hours.

Once your water has broken, the amount of time you have to get to the hospital safely will depend on many factors, such as how long it will take you to get there, how quickly your labor is progressing, and the overall health of your pregnancy.

If it’s not your first pregnancy, things may move along faster than they did the first time. Your previous labor experience might offer some clues about what to expect, but don't let it be your only guide—you may not have as much time as you think.

In addition to knowing when to go to the hospital with contractions and when to stay home, it's also a good idea to discuss the signs of preterm labor or complications like preeclampsia with your doctor or midwife.

The signs of labor, the differences between false labor, true labor, and Braxton Hicks contractions, as well as the symptoms to watch for in the final weeks of your pregnancy. These guidelines, as well as your doctor or midwife's advice, can help you feel more confident about deciding when to go to the hospital when you're having contractions.

And always try to register in a near by hospital, so that when you feel is like you are in a early labor, it can be easy for you to rush in to the hospital.

If you really like this wonderful research and advice share it with some pregnant women out there and follow me up for more informations about health.

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