A Note on Contractions and Preterm Labor

This is just a brief post to mention a tip that I hope will be helpful to anyone suffering from contractions or irritable uterus during pregnancy. I have had contractions/irritable uterus/preterm labor in all of my three pregnancies. In the last two, with my TAC I was able to endure the contractions and make it to full term, despite starting to contract at 22 weeks and 16 weeks respectively. There are many ways of dealing with preterm contractions that have varying degrees of success. I will go over all of those methods in more detail later, but there’s one method that helped me immensely, and it’s one that I haven’t read about anywhere else. Ready for this?

A maternity support belt.

That’s it. It’s simple, cheap, and (for me at least), incredibly effective. Wearing a basic maternity support belt helped control my contractions more than any other method I have tried. Once I started contracting, I wore it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, only taking it off to wash it or to bathe. When I did take it off, my contractions immediately worsened, and they immediately calmed when I put it back on. It’s a big part of the reason I was able to stay pregnant to term, in my opinion.

I have no medical basis for this, and I can only make educated guesses about why it works. I know it probably won’t work for everyone. I just wanted to put this trick out there in case it might help anyone else the way it helped me. I’d love to know if you try it and whether it helps you.

Belt up, ladies.

2 comments

  1. Hi Jill,
    I saw your link on the Abbyloopers FB page and am very interested in this idea. Is there a specific belt you recommend? Also, what was your regimen for managing your contractions in your second and third trimesters?

    Thanks for this great blog!
    -Ali M.

    1. I think any belt would have worked for me. I used a basic one from Motherhood Maternity: http://www.motherhood.com/mobile/Product.asp?Product_Id=984200113&MasterCategory_Id=MC32
      Next time I’ll buy another one so I can have one to wear while I wash it.

      My contractions started at 16 weeks last time, but I didn’t have to take extra measures until 29 weeks (28 weeks the first time). I always made sure to drink a lot of water and empty my bladder often. I was on p17 shots from week 17 to week 37 both times, but unlike a lot of women, I didn’t take any other tocolytics as long as my contractions weren’t too bad. I needed a shot of terbutaline once to calm them in my first TAC pregnancy, and last time I went into full blown labor at 29 weeks and needed 2 days of magnesium by IV to stop it. Otherwise I didn’t take anything, and my contractions were mostly controlled by bed rest. It was pretty miserable, but I made it full term both times. My doctor allowed a lot more contractions than many doctors are comfortable with, which was the right choice in my case, but we had a strict plan for when I needed to come in to L&D.

      Anyway, I hope that helps. You can email me at tac.questions@gmail.com if you have any more questions!

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