Are you, like the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, expecting an imminent arrival? You may be experiencing all of the typical ‘false alarm’ twinges and cramps that mums-to-be normally have at this point in your pregnancy. So how do you know that labour has started? Each woman is different, but normally one of the following will occur:
- Lower back pain/abdominal pain, similar to menstrual cramps.
- Painful contractions, occurring at regular and increasingly shorter intervals.
- Broken waters.
- A brownish or blood-tinged mucus discharge, often called a ‘show’.
The Royal College of Midwives annual legal birth conference in London last week concluded that ‘women can’t insist on a home birth if the NHS doesn’t have the capacity to provide it’. A leading Barrister Barbara Hewson was quoted as saying: ‘If you can’t send a midwife out to a home birth, then you can’t. This needs to be explained to women. The NHS may not be able to give them the choice.’
Yesterday Sky News published a story suggesting that the Government was failing mums to be and that pregnant women are still not receiving consistent care from a single midwife during labour.