Silly Question but..............


Well-Known Member
May 28, 2005
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Hi gals,

Been a while since Ive posted on this site, but i have been around, reading. Just a bit busy with the last few weeks before I go off on leave. Had a rather silly Q to ask....
Well, I was reading the "announce ur new arrivals " threads & I see that so many have labour which lasts for days... I mean going into labour one day & then finally having the baby a couple of days later. Just wanted to know- do u have to have quite a few change of clothes then? How do these people manage without a poo for so many days & how about a shower? I mean they r going to be EXHAUSTED when its all over- so would that be around 4-5 straight days without a shower??????? Gosh I would stink a mile! :? :?
Um...regarding the poo thing - I don't think you have too much control over that. :lol:
there are three stages to labour. thats why some people say " ooo i was in labour for 3 days!" when reall they mean, my waters broke and it took 3 days for me to become fully dilated! i think the third stage what midwives call established labour is when u get to baout 6-7cm and thats when they count labour as starting.
the poo thing louise is right... normal labour signs is diarreha and sickness. its a natural thing thats clears ur body in prep for labour so that it doesnt happen while ur having baby.
as for showering.. im sure if ur pushing a 8lb baby out of you u wont be othered about a bit of B.O! im taking baby wipes to freshen up quickly..but am also having a water birth so will b able to stay cool anyway. dont think you'll need any clothes till you leave hospital just take nighties or p.j's for after the birth... im just giving birth naked as i will b in the pool and it will be more comfortable
after all i cant be prude when ive got strangers peeing at my bits every 30 mins!

hope this helps
I am planning on taking lots and lots of baby wipes and deoderising wipes and femfresh wipes with me to the hospital for when I go into labour to keep me fresh. Although I get the impression from people I speak to that I won't actually give a toss about hygiene when I am having contractions ! lol

Lou :)
Got some info so you know the stages and how it tends to go along. Your not in actual 'active labour' till you are 3-4cm dilated. Stage Two is pushing, Stage Three is delivering the placenta. HTH xxx

Stage One
Early phase
The early phase is sometimes called the latent period or pre labour. The uterus starts to contract or tighten regularly. The contractions gradually become more painful, unlike your Braxton Hicks contractions which were irregular and didn't hurt. Each woman has her own rhythm and pace of labour. Some may not even be aware of the very early contractions and are several centimetres dilated before they realise they're in labour. As the cervix begins to open, its position in your pelvis changes, moving forwards. It softens and effaces which means that it gets thinner and springier. Feel your nose: it's firm and muscular. Now feel you lips: they're soft and stretchy. Your cervix starts out firm like your nose, and has to become soft and stretchy like your lips.
Active phase
Midwives and doctors say you are in active labour when your cervix has dilated, or opened, to three to four centimetres. Your contractions will be getting stronger and more frequent. They're also getting longer. Eventually they may be coming as frequently as every three to four minutes and lasting 60 to 90 seconds — and feel very tense indeed.

Stage Two
Once the cervix has dilated to ten centimetres, the work and excitement of the second stage begin. This is the stage of labour when your womb pushes your baby down the vagina (sometimes called the birth canal) into the world and, at long last, you meet him or her for the first time. There's often a lull at the end of the first stage when the contractions stop and you and your baby can rest for a while. When the contractions start again, you'll feel the pressure of your baby's head between your legs. With each contraction and every push, your baby will move down through your pelvis a little, but at the end of the contraction, he'll slip back up again! Don't despair. As long as the baby keeps on moving on a little further each time, you're doing fine. When your baby's head is far down in your pelvis and stretching the opening of the vagina, you'll probably feel a hot, stinging sensation and your midwife will tell you that your baby's head has "crowned". As your baby's head begins to be born, she may ask you to stop pushing and gently pant. This helps make sure that your baby is born gently and slowly, and should reduce the risk of you tearing.
If you have had a baby before, the second stage may only take five or ten minutes. If this is your first baby, it may take several hours.

Stage Three
In the third stage, you deliver the placenta - the baby's life-support system that has supplied your baby with nutrients, and taken waste products away, as it has grown inside you. After the baby is born, contractions resume after a few minutes, but at a much lesser intensity. These contractions cause the placenta to peel away from the wall of the uterus and drop down into the bottom of your womb. You will probably feel that you want to push. The placenta, with the membranes of the empty bag of waters attached, will pass down and out of your vagina. Your midwife will carefully examine the placenta and membranes to make sure that nothing has been left behind. She will also feel your tummy to check that your uterus is contracting hard in order to stop the bleeding from the place where the placenta was attached.
Delivering the placenta usually takes from five to 15 minutes, but it can take up to an hour.It depends on whether you have a managed or natural third stage. Most women are surprised at how much easier it is to deliver the placenta than to push the baby out. You may like to have a look at this organ that has supported your baby throughout the pregnancy.
Wow- thanks for that Sami. Ooer! I have to say I shall not be looking at the placenta in amazement- bleugh! I'm glad I'm going to be at my end frankly!!

Thanks Sami, Thats really good information but oh my god im not looking forward to this giving birth lark :? Oh well nothing i can about it, just gonna have to hope that all goes nice and smooth and as quick as possible :roll:

Natalie x
Me neither newbump! The only thing that stops me freaking out is the fact that there's no other way!! Might as well just accept it and trust the fickle finger of fate! When I was a kid I used to say that I'd only have a baby if they could beam it out like on Star Trek. My Mum is a Trekkie and so I was sure that somehow that far in the future it would be possible! I was genuinely convinced! Maybe there'll be a miracle breakthrough in quantam physics in the next 3 months but somehow I doubt it!

I'm a bit torn between the desire to know everything about labour in order to pretend to be in control and the desire for sweet ignorance and the fear of scaring myself even further!

Bout the Labour

All I can say is....

Thank goodness we forget <gg>

Ragna n bump xx
I feel a bit mad as I am actually looking forward to it(!?!). I understand that it'll really really hurt but I don't know, I guess I'm odd. A friend at work says that was her favourite bit, she hated being pregnant but loved giving birth (I don't think I'm that enthusiastic)
I went in on a Wednesday night to be induced and delivered on Friday afternoon. I was able to get up and go to the bathroom anytime I wanted to until I got my epidural. I think the wipes are a great idea Lou because I didn't have access to a shower until I was moved to my room in recovery, around 5pm on the Friday.
Thanks gals,

I must say, Ive been blocking out the thought of labour & everything that goes with it, for far too long now. Might as well start facing up to it now eh???
Yes, I think taking in a load of wipes seems a great idea. Ill do it too, once I pack my bags!
For labours that last that long, most o the time is spent at home normally anyway, as Sami says you dont tend to go into hospital till your in 'active labour' most hospitals will just tell you to go home again and rest untill you get to that stage. Its advised anyway that you stay at home for as long as you can, as its a more relaxing atmosphere and will help the labour progress quicker if your in your own comforting surroundings instead of the hospital.
At my hospital, all of the delivery suites have en-suite bathrooms, so I will be taking shower gel, and a flannel and shampoo, so after the birth I can have a nice clean up before slipping into a nice clean nighty before moving onto the ward ticked up in bed with my little bean.

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