Tummy issues are very common in pregnancy. So how will you know if it’s just gas pains or if it’s time for your baby to arrive? Read on to find out!
Being pregnant comes with tons of side effects for your digestive system. During the first trimester, there’s nausea and morning sickness. Then, your baby grows, everything in your abdomen becomes compacted. That can lead to gas, indigestion, and other unpleasant (and embarrassing!) tummy issues.
So, it’s difficult to decide if the discomfort in your tummy is just routine, or if your baby is saying she’s ready to arrive into the world.
Here are 5 questions to answer that’ll help you figure out if it’s gas or labor:
- Are you having other issues? With labor, there will be a lot more going on down there. Change in discharge or bloody mucus increases the chance that it’s labor and not a false alarm.
- Are the pains happening on a schedule? The contractions that labor involves usually develop a rhythm. With labor contractions, a pattern develops. Women in labor will feel the contractions every four to five minutes, and the pains get increasingly stronger. On the other hand, gas comes and goes on an uneven schedule. Plus, gas pains are usually sharper, while early labor contractions feel more like harsh period cramps. Our tip? Get out a stopwatch and see if your pain happens at regular intervals.
- What have you eaten lately? Since your baby is squeezing your digestive system, any food can cause gas. Beans, cauliflower, and broccoli are prime culprits for filling your belly with gas. If you find that your gas pains continue, think about removing gas-inducing foods from your diet until after you deliver.
- Does your belly feel tight? Labor pains include a big muscle contraction all down your abdomen. But gas pains just cause a bloated feeling in your stomach. Does your stomach feel harder every time you’re experiencing pain? Then, it’s probably the start of labor contractions, not gas.
- Can you get relief? Usually, gas pains get much better quickly once you go to the bathroom. So if a trip to the lady’s room helps, your baby is staying inside for a little bit longer.
Our pregnancy articles are for information only and shouldn’t be used to diagnose or create a treatment plan. Always ask your doctor for their advice about any questions or issues you may have during your pregnancy.