When to call in labor?


We like to know when your labor starts, but also want to protect the sleep of your support team and provider so they can be awake and alert when you really need them, so please wait until the morning to report if you are in early labor only. I even suggest not awaking your partner, doula or rest of your support team in the middle of the night until you really feel it is necessary. Call us anytime for urgent matters as listed below.

For first time moms, when all is going well with you (healthy pregnancy, normal labor sensations, your baby is moving as usual, if your waters have been released, the color is not green/brown, your bleeding nor more than slight bloody show to light period flow), make sure that you get home, if you are not there. We like to be called when you are in mid to active labor. If you have birthed vaginally before, I advise doing this much sooner, like when your labor pattern quickly changes from early to active (the sensations become for frequent every 5-7 minutes, last longer (45-60 seconds) and more intense or you can no longer talk during them) but err on the side of caution and call us to come to the birth setting earlier rather than later as you may be further along in your labor than you thing, and the progression to late active labor and pushing can be much quicker than expected (as compared to first birth)- but this also depends on your past history and distance between you and my team or your place of birth.

Notify us during day or evening (9am -9pm)

When you think you are in early labor, with several hours of mild menstrual like cramps and a pattern of uterine contractions which can range from every 4-20 minutes each lasting 30-45 seconds and you can talk through them.

When you notice bloody show, which can be a glob of mucous mixed with blood or a light period like bleeding

When you think your water breaks and it is clear (this is not just a few tablespoons of water which can make a pancake size stain once, but does not continue; rather it is a few cups of water at once or over a period of time, such that your maxi pad becomes heavy with a few cups of fluid); and make sure to notice that the baby is moving as much as usual afterwards. No need to panic if you do not feel fetal movement immediately, as baby might simply be sleeping. If in doubt, you can wake the baby up by drinking 2 large glasses of juice and if worried, try a cup of coffee, eat a carb meal then after 30 min lie down and make sure that you are getting 10 moves in an hour. Healthy awake babies will make 10 moves usually much sooner than an hour.

During the night (9pm-9am)

When labor becomes stronger and more active and you cannot talk through the more frequent and longer and more intense uterine contractions, but need to deep breath or moan. Everyone is different, but generally for a first time mom, when they are coming every 3-4 minutes lasting 60-90 seconds; and for a mom who has delivered vaginally before, when they are coming every 5-7 minutes lasting 45-60 seconds and you want the midwife to come to your house, taking into the account the distance between you and the midwife.

If you have an unusually strong urge to push or have a bowel movement with these more frequent, stronger and more intense uterine contractions.

If your water breaks and it is clear, but you are not feeling the baby move as usual.

If your water breaks and your GBS status is unknown.

If your water breaks and it looks green or like brown pea soup.

If you’re bleeding becomes heavier.

If your baby is not moving as much as usual even in the hour after you have had the juice and carbs.

If you have any worry or concern.


When to call in labor