The first sign of labour is a feeling of heaviness. You may find it harder than usual to get around and will probably have a tugging feeling low down in your tummy and pain in your hips and pelvic area. You may feel a little queasy, but if not, try to eat some carbohydrate-based snacks, to keep yourself going. These are all symptoms of hormonal change, a chain reaction that marks the beginnings of labour.
We know that it’s the baby itself who sets the birth process in motion, by secreting hypophysary hormones which causes the mother’s progesterone levels to plummet. This dramatic change leads to the secretion of another hormone in the mother: oxytocine, which triggers contractions.