This is something that isn’t spoken about very often in the world of Mums, something that when I mentioned to my mum she actually didn’t really understand what I meant, when I told my best friend she said: “Like a plug on a sink?” And in a way she is exactly right – but it is about as a gross as a sink filled with soggy food!
So what is it, why does it happen & should you be worried?
What is it?
Throughout pregnancy, a mucus plug blocks the opening of the cervix to prevent bacteria from entering the uterus.
Before labor, this mucus plug is expelled so that the cervix can open to allow the baby to pass through during labor and birth.
What does it look like?
Now you are probably wondering the answer to this question fairly innocently, but don’t blame me when you see this picture and want to cry 🙂
As you can see it is like a thick “flemmy” discharge that when it is on your fingers will feel kind of flubbery and elasticated. You may find a little bit in your knickers or alot.
What does it mean when it comes away? Do I need to be worried
If you Google about this you will see things like: “Signs of Labor” but be aware losing your mucus plug does not always mean you are going to give birth any day.
Some women will lose their mucous plug or part of their mucous plug weeks before they go into labor. Losing your mucous plug does not always mean labor will begin shortly. Keep in mind that even if a woman has begun to dilate, it may be weeks before she actually goes into labor.
As your body prepares for labor your cervix will begin to dilate and thin. As your cervix opens up, your mucous plug may fall out. Losing your mucous plug is a good sign that labor is on its way. Though, it could be days or even weeks after you lose your mucous plug before labor actually starts. Many women do not lose their mucous plug at one time; instead, they lose it more gradually. They may notice an increase in vaginal secretions weeks before they go into labor.
I lost my mucus plug at 34 weeks & I panicked, there was no blood or anything and we had had intercourse a few days before and although the internet specifies “if you notice blood tinged mucous before your thirty-sixth week of pregnancy, notify your doctor right away.” I felt more comfortable speaking to my doctor sooner about it just to be sure.
Also, be aware your mucus plug can grow back & you may then lose it again this is completely normal for many women in their later stages of pregnancy.
Your doctor may advise you to stay out of baths & stay out of swimming pools just to reduce the risk of infection.
If you have any worries or concerns about this topic or anything else to do with your pregnancy always speak with your midwife or doctor, it is their job to support you through this vulnerable time & no question is a stupid question 🙂