But we aren't here to plug apps,
we're going to go through how you can actually time them with pencil and paper.
It can be a pretty great thing for a wanting to help family member or a partner to do
and feel like they are being super helpful!
The frequency of contractions are timed from start to start.
Start a timer when the contraction starts and keep it going until the next one starts (and restart it). Then record that time in one column.
The duration of a contraction refers to how long the actual contraction lasts.
Timing from the beginning of the contraction to the end of the contraction. You'll simply need to just look at the time since it started when it ends (don't stop the timer). You'll write that time down in another column.
You'll end up with a paper with three columns because you'll also want to write down the actual time periodically, so you know how long they've been going on.
You may have heard of the 5-1-1 rule or the 4-1-1 rule
(many care providers use this to explain when to head into the hospital or birthing facility),
this is basically referring to an average of each of your three columns!
5 or 4 minutes in frequency.
1 minute in duration.
For 1 hour.
Easy peasy, right?
Like we said, most people these days just use an app. They track and create the spreadsheet for you,
with just the push of a finger when the contraction starts and when it ends.
But now you know how to time contractions
and what those apps actually do!
Jessica Anne Dill
Mom of 5, Wife, Doula trainer, Professional Birth and Postpartum Doula, Placenta Specialist, and best friend of coffee and long naps!