You are aware of your little one's estimated due date. Labor before the 37th week of pregnancy is a preterm or early term; labor between 36 and 40 weeks is full term; and labor beyond 40 weeks, is late term. Few women go into labor on the estimated due date. But its imperative to know if you're going into labor because it helps you ward off complications and manage your pain better.
Here are three of the earliest signs that your're in labor:
1. Baby's position descends: When the body prepares for labor, the baby will positiuon deeper into the pelvis, making you feel lighter.
2. Water Breaking: Spontaneous rupture of the membranes or "breaking of the waters" is a strong symptom of labor.
3. Cervical changes during labor: The cervix is the opening of uterus through which the baby is born. All through the pregnancy, this opening is thick (not effaced), closed (not dilated), pointed towards the back (posterior end of the mother), and has a layer of mucus (mucus plug) to protect the baby. The below changes to the cervix signal labor: