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Preterm Labor - Home Treatment

Symptoms of preterm labor are warning signs. They don't necessarily mean that you'll have a preterm birth.

If you're less than 37 weeks pregnant and you're having more or stronger contractions than usual, try these things:

  • Drink 2 or 3 glasses of water or juice. Not having enough liquids can cause contractions.
  • Stop what you are doing, and empty your bladder. Then lie down on your left side for at least 1 hour.
  • If your contractions get worse during the hour, call your doctor or nurse-midwife, or go to the hospital.
  • Try to remember what you were doing when the symptoms started so that you can avoid starting the contractions again later.

Although stress isn't thought to be a direct cause of preterm labor, do what you can to reduce stress in your life. Try to do less, ask for help, and eat well.

Bed rest

Strict bed rest is no longer used to prevent preterm labor. But your doctor may recommend expectant management, which may involve some bed rest.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: January 08, 2013
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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