How to Check your Cervix During Pregnancy

The cervix is a part of the body which is often ignored during our normal everyday lives. But it plays a very important role during pregnancy and especially so during delivery. Checking cervix during pregnancy is essential as it helps to confirm how soon delivery may take place. The cervix is the small opening which connects the vagina to the uterus. In normal times it is as small as a pinhead, just large enough to allow your menstrual blood to flow out. When you become pregnant, the cervix becomes softer and more elongated, while the opening is closed with a plug of mucus. Your doctor may insert a gloved finger inside your vagina as part of a procedure of checking cervix for pregnancy.

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Checking your Cervix During Pregnancy

During labor, one of the best ways to ascertain how soon the baby will be born, is to check the cervix and find how much it has dilated. Checking your cervix during pregnancy is usually done by your doctor or nurse, who will insert a gloved finger inside your vagina and feel the changes. The most comfortable position would be to lie on your back, with your knees bent. See also friable cervix during pregnancy

A cervix check during pregnancy enables your medical care giver to ascertain the position of the cervix, dilation and sometimes, also the position of the baby.

Position of Cervix During Labor

In the initial stages of pregnancy the cervix thickens and lengthens to protect the baby. When labor begins, the cervix becomes softer, thinner and shorter to allow the baby to come out. Its position also changes – it becomes ‘anterior’ (meaning that it points to the front) and drops into the vagina, thus allowing the baby to come out through the vagina canal.

Another important change is that it dilates, thus allowing the baby to pass through it more easily. Dilation of the cervix is usually measured on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 denotes a closed cervix and 10 denotes a fully dilated cervix. The rate of dilation of the cervix is usually one centimeter per hour, when labor is in progress.

There are potential harmful effects of checking cervix during pregnancy. Although checking your cervix during pregnancy is essential, care must be taken not to do it too often, since this increases the risk of infection, as bacteria at the opening of the vagina often gets pushed back into the cervix.

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