5 Early Signs of Labor - How To Tell If Your Baby Is Coming Soon

It’s your last trimester and suddenly the countdown to your due date begins! Every woman’s pregnancy journey and body is different - but there are some common signs of early labor to keep an eye out for.

The Need to Nest

Are you feeling the sudden urge to clean and organize the home? Especially within weeks of your due date? Our “nesting” instinct kicks in to help women prepare for her little one’s arrival.

If you are suddenly feeling the urge to re-arrange pictures or stock up on baby supplies, you may be experiencing this early sign that labor is near.  Embrace this beautiful process - it’s helping you to feel as prepared as possible for the arrival of your baby (which may be soon!). 

Baby Bump Go Low-low-low-low

One morning, you may wake up feeling like your baby bump looks and feels lower.  This happens when the baby drops, an early labor sign known as “lightening.”  Lightening is a noticeable early labor sign and typically occurs two to four weeks before birth. As every woman is different, signs of labor can often look different. The lightening can also happen a bit earlier or later for some as well.  But keep an eye out, because it means your little baby is starting to move into the pelvis and prepare to enter the world!

Lost: Your Mucus Plug

Your cervix creates a barrier that seals it, similar to a cork in a bottle.  This is your mucus plug and it protects your uterus and baby from the outside world.  You lose your mucus plug as your cervix begins to soften and open up for your baby - and can come dislodged anywhere from weeks in advance or as labor begins. Learn more about how to spot your mucus plus here.  

Loose Stool (Otherwise Known as Diarrhea)

As your third trimester comes to a close, some women experience symptoms of nausea and diarrhea again. Diarrhea, in particular, may be a sign that labor is coming soon. The release of prostaglandin, a type of hormone, prepares the uterus for labor by triggering your bowels to empty themselves, making room for contractions.

My Water Broke! 

Thanks to Hollywood, women believe their water breaking to be the first sign that labor is approaching.  However, only 10% of women experience their water breaking, according to a report in the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health.  Instead, most women are already well into labor when their water breaks, meaning that it is far more likely to occur when you are already at the hospital or other place of birth. Nonetheless, should you be part of that 10% and your water breaks, get yourself to a hospital immediately because baby is on its way!