In the past, our grandmothers had certain techniques and tips for knowing when they were going to give birth. If these tips from our seniors are to be taken with a grain of salt, they can be fun for the impatient!
Your APD (due date) is approaching! Soon, you will be able to hug your little one in your arms and finally meet him. Of course, this little angel may arrive earlier (or later) than expected. Indeed, the expected date of delivery is approximate. Few women actually give birth on the exact date of their due date, but rather within 10 to 15 days before that date or within 4 to 8 days afterwards. It must be said that a pregnancy lasts on average between 280 and 287 days and that each body is different!
So how do you know when you are going to give birth? Are there any signs to recognize? If we do not believe our grandmothers, some of our behaviors could put us in the ear. Our elders sometimes relied on these signs to know if they were going to give birth to their baby or not. Myth or reality, it can always be fun to know them, especially if you are anxiously awaiting this birth! Here are X tips from grandmother to know if we are going to give birth soon (to take a step back).
Read also: 15 things to know about childbirth
Prepare a cozy nest
According to some, if at the end of pregnancy, you feel like tidying up your house or apartment from top to bottom and cleaning it, you will soon be giving birth! It would be a need for “nesting” in the pregnant woman. Clearly, prepare a nest for your unborn child. This behavior is found in several species, such as birds for example. According to legend, the future mother even has a boost of energy shortly before the birth of the baby, precisely to prepare the house or apartment to welcome this child.
The due date is near a full moon
According to some myths, if your due date is near a full moon, you are more likely to give birth on that day! This could be explained by the influence of the full moon on the tides. If the full moon has an influence on the tides, it can perhaps influence other fluids… like amniotic fluid. And why not, even lead to a loss of water! This myth may seem a bit far-fetched (moreover, no scientific data confirms the veracity of this phenomenon) but many mothers have fun believing it.
In addition, in many cultures, the moon is associated with female cycles and fertility, especially because a woman’s menstrual cycle lasts an average of 28 days and a lunar cycle, 29 days. Many have thus imagined that there was a link between these cycles, even if nothing has been scientifically proven.
Several researchers have taken an interest in the subject and have discovered that there are no more births on full moon nights than others. If a pregnant woman gives birth on a full moon night, we will rather speak of coincidence.
One hand between the breasts and the stomach
Our grandmothers had another trick to know if the birth was near: to pass a hand between her breasts and her belly. If you can pass your hand up to your neck while pregnant, your baby has lowered into the pelvis and is ready to come out soon! Otherwise, it is because it is still warm in your belly and it is not yet time to go to the maternity hospital. For some mothers, it is when we manage to place four fingers laterally between the breasts and the belly that the baby is engaged in the pelvis. Again, this is a grandma’s method and even if you can get it right, it doesn’t mean you are going to give birth within a minute.
Read also: Masturbation during childbirth: a practice to relieve pain still too ignored?
What are the real signs of an impending childbirth?
The body of a pregnant woman is well made! When childbirth arrives, the body sends out a few signals to prepare the mother-to-be for this birth. But better to know them if you want to recognize them. Some may indeed go unnoticed, such as the loss of the mucous plug. Here are the different signs and symptoms that should alert you:
- The loss of the mucous plug (not to be confused with the rupture of the water bag): the mucous plug forms with the cervical mucus secreted by all women and protects the future baby from infections during pregnancy. It is expelled naturally just before childbirth, before the opening of the cervix. It can go unnoticed.
- Contractions: but be careful, there are false contractions, also called Braxton Hicks contractions. They are painful and therefore often confused with labor contractions. To tell them apart, rely on the regularity of the contractions: if they last more than 40 seconds and they are spaced 5 minutes or less apart, it is time to go to the hospital or maternity ward, it is the start of childbirth!
- The rupture of the water bag: namely that the flow of the liquid can be gradual or sudden. The water bag breaks during the baby’s descent into the basin. Make sure to go to the maternity ward or hospital as soon as this happens, even if you are a few weeks away from your due date.
Some other physical symptoms can also suggest that the baby is ready to go out:
- Tremors or chills
- Back pain
- Great fatigue
- Sleep problems, restlessness
- The baby moves more than usual in his mother’s womb
See also: These stars who kept their pregnancy a secret for as long as possible
My baby is slow to arrive: how can I start a birth naturally?
Are you past your due date and want to avoid an induction? Rest assured, there are certain methods and tips to induce childbirth naturally. Again, this should be taken with a grain of salt, as every body is different (and not all of these methods have been validated by science). But if you’re impatient, it’s worth a try. Here are the tips and advice that we find most often:
- Make love with your partner: you have undoubtedly heard of the Italian trigger, this myth according to which having sex at the end of pregnancy could promote childbirth. If this method has not been proven, sex can produce oxytocin. This hormone causes regular contractions of the uterus and can cause the onset of labor. In addition, the sperm acts directly on the opening of the cervix thanks to the prostaglandins it contains!
- Masturbate, to release oxytocin. Or massage her breasts.
- Walk regularly, to help the baby descend into the pelvis. In addition, it allows you to practice physical activity.
- Eat dates: several studies have shown that consuming dates promotes dilation of the cervix. And for good reason, this fruit would have an effect similar to that of oxytocin.
- Eat spicy: Spicy dishes are said to help increase uterine activity, as this stimulates the digestive system.
Note that your midwife or doctor may also recommend that you drink raspberry tea. The raspberry leaf is known to facilitate childbirth, thanks to its virtues to relax the uterus and facilitate the passage of the baby.
Either way, if you have any questions about your health, be sure to talk to your doctor or midwife.
Journalist specializing in parenthood, Elise writes for aufeminin and Parole de mamans. She is also very involved in the fight for women’s rights. If you only have to remember …