What Do Contractions Feel Like?

Labor contractions are the periodic tightening and relaxing of the uterine muscle, the largest muscle in a woman’s body. Words like can’t (can + not), don’t (do + not), and I’ve (I + have) are all contractions. The strength of uterine contractions increases over time, which can cause a gradual increase in labor pain. Unlike true labor contractions, Braxton-Hicks contractions are weak and do not occur at regular intervals.

I will change out the words on the chalkboard and the banner to match whatever is hanging below. This is a little silly because English speakers have been using contractions for centuries—although not always the same ones we use today. We spent two weeks in the NICU grasping at any progress he made and at first he continued to surprise the doctors by even making any progress.

Time your contractions and take note of any other symptoms you’re experiencing so you can report them to your doctor. Following intercourse, many moms experience contractions that can be powerful and last as long as a half hour. Rocking your pelvis during contractions can help reduce the pain and be soothing.

Thankfully I’m 38 weeks today and if I had gone into labor everything would’ve been OK. Didn’t realize my water had broken but luckily was able to keep track of contractions with this super handy app which tipped me off to contacting the hospital and going in. I definitely recommend downloading this.

But the contractions were so long and close together and had been for at least an hour, so we left for the hospital around 5. The good news though is that every woman gets through them, and that women talk much more about their babies than the contractions that brought their babies out to meet them.