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What To Expect When Your Water Breaks

When a woman's water breaks in the movies, it's usually a comical event. An expectant mother ready to pop at any moment is either doing something momentous or is among a crowd of people when her water suddenly breaks. Someone comes to her rescue and whisks her off to the nearest hospital. After lots of pain and heavy breathing, she effortlessly gives birth and has her baby in no time.

Unsurprisingly, the moment your water breaks in real life won’t be so glamorous. So, many first-time moms get curious about what it feel like when their water breaks. The sac of amniotic fluid that your baby is surrounded by and protected with is what pops, so to speak, when your water finally breaks.

International Doula Institute

For some women, their water breaks at the start of labor; for others, it can occur during labor. When this happens, it’s a sign that your body is getting ready to give birth. Typically, if labor hasn’t started yet, it won't be too far behind after your water breaks. Also, some women don't water won’t break on their own. During labor, if the sac still hasn’t ruptured, your doctor can use a thin tool to create a small opening to make it to rupture that way. If you water breaks at home or while you're out, call your healthcare provider right away to let them know and learn what to do next.

For each mom, the experience can be different. It may feel like a slow trickle of never ending urine, or feel like a big gush of fluid. It’s not something that will cause you pain, but depending on where you are, it could likely make a big mess. There's no smell to the fluid, and it’s usually just clear. If you're getting close to your due date, it’s never a bad idea to have a few towels handy in your car and/or hospital bag. After all, it never hurts to be prepared.

If you're feeling nervous or anxious about your water breaking- or about labour as a whole- don’t. You might not be able to tell exactly when your water will break, but you can certainly watch for the signs. Go to your doctor or midwife if you have any questions. Finally, keep in mind that your experience may be completely different than your friend who had a baby just a few months ago. Just go in with an open mind, and be prepared for the big change that you're about to go through.

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