The medical community still doesn’t fully understand the main reasons why labor really begins. However, there are some things that are known to increase your chances of giving birth preterm i.e. before 37 weeks gestation.
Here are few of the common causes of preterm labor:
- Stretching of the uterus
When the uterus is overstretched, it may actually end up contracting even more. These contractions can lead to preterm labor. Likely scenarios for distended uterus may include carrying multiples, having an excessive amount of amniotic fluid, having large fibroids in the wall of the uterus, or being pregnant with a very large baby.
- Abnormal structure of the uterus
Certain conditions can lead to a woman having a uterus with an abnormal shape, which puts a baby at risk for early delivery. These conditions may include having a uterus that is only partially developed or that has a septum running down the middle. Most of these conditions can be identified on ultrasound or through other imaging studies.
- Closely spaced pregnancy
Women who get pregnant again less than 18 months after giving birth are at an increased risk for preterm birth. It may be due to the fact that her body has not completely recovered (physically and nutritionally) from having just been pregnant.
- A previous preterm delivery
Women who have given birth prematurely before may be at risk of delivering early again. A preconception visit to your doctor can help reduce your risk of preterm labor. Your doctor may recommend early screening for things like cervical length, or recommend medication to decrease your risk of preterm birth.
- Untreated Infections
Untreated conditions such as a urinary tract infection, sexually transmitted infection, or even dental infections may increase a woman’s risk for experiencing preterm birth. Make sure you mention any abnormal symptoms that you face to your doctor and continue regular dental care, even during pregnancy.
- Low pre-pregnancy weight
Women who have a low body mass index (less than 19.8) are at an increased risk for preterm birth. If you are someone who had a low weight, remember to make a preconception visit to discuss healthy ways to put on some kilos before trying to conceive.
- Using fertility treatments
Babies conceived using fertility treatments like in vitro fertilization (IVF) are at an increased risk for being born early.
These are some of the factors that increase your chances of having a preterm labor. If you have any concern, meet our doctors at KIMS Cuddles to get the best advice and solution.
*Information shared here is for general purpose. Please take doctors’ advice before taking any decision.