If there was one thing I was always curious about, it was how it would be like when your water breaks during labor. I’ve always seen it happen in movies and with my first pregnancy, I assumed it would happen to me too (which is not always the case for some people).
I had questions like, “What should I expect?” or “What should I look out for?” and “How does it feel like?”.
Needless to say, those questions were answered when I did experience a rupture of the membranes (or also known as the rupture of your amniotic sac – the water house that surrounds your baby) with my first pregnancy.
It was quite weird actually and it was different than I expected. I didn’t know what to think or feel but I knew that it meant one thing: baby was coming soon.
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What does it mean when your water breaks?
Before I dive into my experience, I first want to explain what it means when your water breaks. The amniotic sac is the sac that surrounds your baby in your uterus. It’s like a house of water that keeps your baby protected from infections and bacteria. This is where your baby swims in it!
Not only does the sac keep out infections, it also nurtures and provide nutrients to baby, which is essential to baby’s growth.
When this sac gets ruptured, almost like a water balloon that popped, your baby will need to be delivered within the next 24 hours. If you don’t deliver baby within the next 24 hours, you and your baby are prone to infections. With the amniotic fluid leaking, the size of your baby’s protective barrier decreases.
How do I know if my water broke?
A few common signs you should remember if you want to know if your water broke include:
- A gush of water
- Consistent water trickling
- Fluid that has no smell (amniotic fluid contains no smell unlike urine)
- Fluid that looks clear or transparent
A fast and easy way to check is to use a checklist!
What do you do when your water breaks?
Generally, your Doctor should have already advised you with steps that you should take if your water breaks but we always have that one naughty Mama who forgot, right? But it’s okay, because if you’re that Mom, here are a few things you can do!
1. Take Note!
As soon as your water breaks, make sure you try your best to remember the time that your water broke and the color of the amniotic fluid (if it’s clear or if it’s red). As mentioned before, it’s imperative to give birth within the next 24 hours as soon as your amniotic sac ruptures. If not, the time between allows those baddies (bacteria) to form and an infection may develop. Grab a pen and paper and start scribbling those notes!
2. Call Your Doctor
It’s always assuring to know that when you’re calling your Doctor, anything he or she says is more reliable than the thousands of thoughts running through your head. You need medical help. Let’s embrace it! Call your Doctor and provide him or her with details of your water breaking and you’ll be directed to do the next appropriate thing.
3. Go to the Hospital
I know that sometimes when huge life events, such as your “water breaking”, happens, you’re 1) lost and 2) panicking! If you’re standing there unsure of what to do and forgot about Steps 1 and 2, then alright Mama, let’s head out to the hospital! No need to wait hours after and ponder upon the thought of “Did my water break?” or “Was that pee?”. The more time you kill, the more time you’re risking baby’s safety. Grab that hospital bag that you have prepared and have your spouse take you there. Nurses are trained professionals who knows the exact steps to take when you arrive and they’ll be able to tell if you’ve already begun labor or not.
One thing you should always keep in mind, “It’s better to be safe than sorry!”
3 Ways You Can Prepare Yourself
During your 9th month of pregnancy,, there are a few ways you can prepare yourself to avoid “accidental” water breaks in places you’d hate for it to occur. I’ve heard other Moms tell stories of their water breaking in the grocery store, at work, in the car, and even at a Doctor appointment!
Although you can have the rupture of the membranes, it’s not always the case with some mothers. You may have other signs of labor, such as lower back pain, contractions, bloody vaginal discharge, pelvic pressure, cramping, etc…
The tricky part is that you NEVER know what your labor sign may be but it’s always good to adopt and try these new habits at the beginning of your 9th month of pregnancy:
- Reduce Outside Trips – Make sure you reduce outside trips unless it’s urgent or necessary. For example, try to reduce shopping at a mall or at a retail store just because you want to. Or if you need to do your monthly manicure, try seeing if you can paint your own nails or pay for someone to come do it at home.
- Shop Online – Instead of going to the store to buy necessities, try shopping online. There are several stores offering shipping options that can be convenient, such as Free Shipping, 2-Day shipping, or Free In-Store Pickup. Buy your items in a way that works for you without even making a trip!
- Always Have Someone with You – Besides going to work alone, always try to have someone with you whenever you’re going somewhere. That includes grocery trips (schedule those for the weekend), Doctor appointments (have your Spouse go with you), or finishing up your baby’s registry (bring a family member). If you DO happen to experience a labor sign – like the rupture of the membranes – you’ll have someone who can take over the wheel and drive you to the hospital!
A Dive into My Experience
In my last month of pregnancy, labor signs couldn’t have been more obvious than the one and only “water break” that we all know about. Yes, this was my labor sign.
I recall waking up early on the day of, getting ready for work and walking into the bathroom. The moment I sat down, I felt a gush of water fall out. And no, it was not a regular kind of gush that you’d mistake for pee. It was the kind that sounded louder than normal and felt more distinct than what I was used to. Almost like a big “plop!”.
For one, I knew it wasn’t pee. And two, I had another common sign that led me to believe it really was a rupture of the membranes: the trickling of the “water fall” – as I like to call it.
Water continued to trickle down for a good 10 minutes or so and then it would stop for another 15 minutes, continuing its cycle. It lasted for an hour until my husband and I decided we were ready to make the trip we’ve both been waiting for – the labor trip to the hospital. Luckily, my contractions didn’t start until I arrived at the hospital.
Now, do note that not all Moms will experience the same thing as I did nor did other Mothers go through the same experience. Every Mama will have their own unique labor story to tell and how it all went down with their “water breaking”.
Some may have their water break with contractions following shortly after and some may not even have contractions until they’re induced!
In my case, I was induced at the hospital, almost 5 hours after I arrived, with a medication known as Pitocin (click to read more about it from the Bump!). Shortly after I received Pitocin, my contractions began to escalate and oh boy, my contractions were coming within 30-second intervals! Those moments will forever be remembered!
Since we’ve read about my first sign of labor with water breaking, what was your experience like? What was your unique story and did your water break as well? Do tell us here, as we Mothers would love to know how it all went down 🙂
Oh, and one more thing.
If you enjoyed this post, please share? Other Mama’s may find it helpful as well!