The nursery is ready, you haven't see your feet in weeks, and you feel like you can't wait another minute to meet the little one who's been growing inside your womb for the past nine months. When you're ready to give birth, a paramount question on your list has got to be when will my hospital admit me during labor? And I don't blame you.
The world record for the shortest labor is two minutes, and it goes to an Australian mom of five, reported Fit Pregnancy. She felt like she had to go to the bathroom, and saw her son's head crowning. With no time to alert her husband, the baby boy was out of the womb within two minutes. If only every labor were this easy, right?!
But most birth experiences don't quite fall in line with the above story. In fact, because every woman is different, the average labor can last anywhere from a couple hours to a couple days, according to Mayo Clinic. And although each doctor has a different policy for when it's time to go to the hospital, Mayo Clinic additionally noted that your hospital will admit you for labor when you're in what's called "active labor."
Mayo Clinic defined active labor as when you're six to 10 centimeters dilated. Your water will break, and you will have intense cramping all over your body. As for contractions, they will last anywhere from a minute to 90 seconds, and unfortunately, there's no way to gauge how far apart they can be.
Perusing the message boards on What To Expect, you'll find that moms noted they were in active labor with contractions being anywhere from three to 10 minutes apart. Mayo Clinic also reported that a sign of active labor is the expulsion of the mucus plug from the vagina.
To make sure you're comfortable in the hospital during active labor, be sure to have a copy of your birth plan, suggested Parents, as well as your hospital bag packed and ready to go.
After you are fully dilated to 10 centimeters, you will begin the next stage of your labor, which is delivery. In other words, get ready to push, and push it real good.