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How labor begins

Author GreatDad Writers
Submitted 04-10-2006

As your baby continues to grow inside your spouse’s womb, her body keeps marvelously adapting itself to cope with the changes. No doubt, both you and your spouse will, by now, be quite anxious about the delivery. While you are naturally eager to hold your baby, a couple more weeks may elapse before the mother actually begins to experience the symptoms that will indicate the onset of labor.


Have you ever wondered how the mother’s body knows when it is time to begin labor? It is not yet exactly known how labor is triggered, though researchers who have studied the phenomena have formulated various theories. They think labor starts in the body of the to-be-mom, in response to a signal from the baby.


These are the possible factors that may cause labor to begin:

  • It is surmised that when babies in the womb are ready for delivery, their brains fire a signal to certain glands, called the fetal adrenal glands.

  • The fetal adrenal glands react by releasing hormones that stimulate the production of estrogen and progesterone; this acts a signal to the mom’s body to go into labor.

  • The baby’s lungs may also release hormones that indicate that they are ready for delivery; this may result in the release of prostaglandins that prepare the cervix and trigger labor.