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GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
A new mother holds her newborn baby in a hospital bed
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What to Expect When it’s Time to Push

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Being a new mom is one of life’s most amazing experiences. Your body spends 9 whole months creating an actual life inside you. While it can seem like such a slow process, by the time your due date comes around you’ll be wondering where all the time went. The pace rapidly changes from, “What color should the nursery walls be?” to, “It’s time to push.” Cervical dilation is at full capacity and it’s time to help guide your baby into the world.

Delivery can take anywhere from a few minutes up to even several hours. Typically, second and third pregnancies tend to go much quicker. When it’s time to push, you’ll notice that your contractions are actually more regular than they were in advanced labor. They should be anywhere from two to five minutes apart and lasting anywhere from sixty to ninety seconds each. They can be either less or more intense, depending on the woman and the pregnancy. All pregnancies and births are different and have different pregnancy delivery symptoms and side effects.

Some pregnancy delivery symptoms and signs that you should be ready and aware of can include:

  • Contraction pains
  • The instinct and urge to begin pushing (an epidural can effect this feeling)
  • Pressure in the rectum
  • Either a burst of energy or fatigue
  • Noticeable contractions that involve your uterus rising with each one
  • A bloody show increase may occur
  • You’ll feel noticeably uncomfortable in the vaginal region as the baby’s head begins to emerge
  • Sweet relief as your baby slides out of the vaginal canal and into the world

It’s completely normal to feel anxious, excited, frustrated, or impatient when it comes time to finally pushing. Try to remain calm and collected through the pain. We want to get this baby out quickly and safely.

Normally, you’ll be instructed to push three times with each contraction, or as you feel the instinct to do so. Take time to relax and breath between these intervals. As difficult as it may be to do so, try to relax your whole body while simultaneously pushing as if you were having a bowel movement. Focus on pushing and your baby and not on the idea that you may, in fact, have a bowel movement while giving birth. It’s a common fear but also an extremely common occurrence. Your OBGYN and his assistants are all well versed in this happening and are fully prepared to handle it. So, put it out of your mind. If you are propped up on your back, tuck your chin into your chest and give the pushes everything you’ve got.

You know your body better than anyone. Pushing as hard as you can will help your baby move through the birth canal quicker. This is a mission, momma. Stay focused and trust your motherly instincts. If you feel like you need to rearrange and change positions in order to help your baby move out easier, then do so. If your doctor instructs you to stop pushing, do so. Take this time to regain you strength and energy and get ready for the next set of pushes. Don’t forget to watch the mirror when they alert you that your Baby’s head is crowning. This is not a moment you want to miss.

Above all else, remember, you can do this.

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Geraldine
GR8NESS Writer
Geraldine is a GR8NESS Contributing Editor who writes about self care, clean makeup and beauty, mental health, and relationships – as well as natural remedies and fitness. She’s a coffee enthusiast with Venezuelan roots, a former ballerina, and the sunscreen patrol. Most of the time, you can find her working on her skincare routine or trying a new dance workout.
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