Preterm labor is when a pregnant woman gets regular contractions before she reaches 37 weeks of pregnancy. These regular contractions lead the cervix to open before the 37 weeks. Sometimes your cervix can open before 37 weeks even without any contractions. This can cause the preterm birth of the baby. But every preterm labor doesn't lead to the preterm birth of the baby. More than 50% of the women who experienced preterm labor have delivered the baby only after 37 weeks and more. Sometimes preterm births are also planned due to many complications. This happens only in the worse conditions as these cases are generally very rare. Preterm births also happen when your water breaks early.
So, it is good to be aware of preterm labor symptoms and visit your obstetrician for help. You should definitely visit your obstetrician in the following cases. If you experience any abdominal pain especially menstrual like cramps, If you experience continues contractions, If you experience pressure in your pelvic area or any sudden low back pain. You should also rush to your doctor if you notice more than the usual vaginal discharge especially if it is mucus-like, or even if the discharge is pinkish in color. Visiting your doctor at the right time can even reduce the chances of preterm birth of the baby. Sometimes these symptoms are confusing and will be much similar to normal pains, but to be on the safer side it is advisable to check with your doctor if you find anything different from normal.
Even though the number of preterm births reduced drastically over years, approximately 1 in 10 babies are born preterm. Preemies are born very less in weight and each premie is different. It is not mandatory that every premie will have severe health issues. But they need special care and highly prone to infections because of the immature immune system and body parts. So, they have to be taken care in a NICU. So if you are giving birth to a preterm baby opt for a hospital which provides excellent NICU care. Because your sensitive little champ needs a special care.
With the help of NICU, even babies who are born very early were also able to survive. Apart from the fact that preterm babies are more prone to infections they are also at risk of many health problems like jaundice, Anemia, breathing problems like apnea. problems due to abnormal or partial growth of other body parts. But there are many cases where the preterm babies have fought all the odds and later developed to be a healthy and normal baby, with the help of proper care.