When you’re pregnant, having your water break will either be a sigh of relief that it’s almost over and you won’t be pregnant anymore, or it will instill a shock of fear because OMG, this is really happening now. (Or all of the above.) The scary thing about your water breaking — unless it’s being done manually by your doctor — is that it can happen at any time, anywhere. And sometimes, when you least expect it — when you're just minding your own business. What about when you’re in the bathroom? Can your water break as you’re peeing?
According to What to Expect, only 15 percent of pregnant women experience their water breaking before going into labor, and most moms either have their water broken manually at the hospital, or it just naturally happens during labor. If you’re one of the 15 percent, could your water break while you’re sitting on the toilet?
Dr. Kameelah Phillips, OB-GYN and founder of OBaby Parent Education says to Romper in an email, "The amniotic fluid will leak out of your vagina, while urine leaves your body through the urethra … these are two entirely separate systems."
So since they are separate — and our bodies are so good at multitasking — of course your water can break while you’re peeing.
But how can you differentiate between urine and the amniotic fluid? Amniotic fluid is a combination of baby urine, antibodies that prevent infection, proteins, and hormones, according to Phillips. But obviously you won’t be able to see that with the naked eye. And the color of the amniotic fluid and your urine can be similar sometimes.
Typically, urine has an odor, but amniotic fluid usually does not, according to the Mayo Clinic. Forums on Baby Center and What to Expect showed a lot of moms reporting that amniotic fluid continues to gush long after they’ve finished urinating.
If you’re not sure and are worried, there are amniotic fluid test strips and pads that you can get at most drug stores. And of course, also at Target — the mecca. Or, once you think you’re finished urinating (and you’re sure your bladder is empty) you can use a regular pad and squeeze your Kegel muscles to see if more fluid comes out. If it continues to saturate the pad, you’re probably in labor and need to get to the hospital or call your midwife immediately, noted Mayo Clinic.
If you’re unsure, it’s always best to contact your healthcare provider. They’ll be able to examine you and run some tests to see if you were just urinating or if your water broke. And if it did break, congratulations — you’re no longer pregnant and you’ll have that sweet baby in your arms soon.