What Causes Preterm Labor?


Quick Answer

According to WebMD, there are many conditions that cause premature labor. Some of these include smoking while pregnant and being either very overweight or very underweight before getting pregnant. Other causes include using drugs or alcohol, getting pregnant through in-vitro fertilization, being pregnant with multiples or getting pregnant too soon after having a baby.

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What Causes Preterm Labor?
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Full Answer

WebMD also states that having a family history of premature labor can increase the risk of premature labor. Conditions such as high blood pressure, preeclampsia, diabetes and blood-clotting disorders or infections could also cause premature labor. Some symptoms of premature labor include back pain, cramping, increased pressure in the vagina and contractions that occur every ten or so minutes. These contractions are different from the false Braxton Hicks contractions in that they are regularly spaced and continue after one moves around. Premature labor can be stopped if the patient acts fast and contacts her doctor. In most cases, a visit to the hospital is necessary. There, doctors may administer medicine to relax the uterus and stop labor. Sometimes, however, the labor has progressed too far, and doctors need to go through with delivery. Premature babies often quickly catch up in size and development and grow up to be normal children, but they do face a higher risk of certain long-term health problems.

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