What is a mucous plug during pregnancy?

Qu'est-ce que le bouchon muqueux pendant la grossesse ?

What is a mucus plug?

During their pregnancy-free cycles, women secrete a mucus called cervical mucus from their reproductive tract. Its purpose is to hydrate and facilitate sperm access to the uterus and fallopian tubes, thus helping fertilization. If fertilization does not occur during the ovulation period, this mucus is naturally evacuated with the menstrual period. But if fertilization does occur and pregnancy is underway, the mucus coagulates at the entrance to the cervix, creating a protective plug at the entrance to the uterus. It is precisely this accumulation of cervical mucus that we call the mucous plug. Its purpose is to protect the fetus from possible infection, and it thickens and regenerates throughout pregnancy for the baby's benefit.

Loss of the mucous plug

At the end of pregnancy, the cervix moves as a result of physiological contractions. With it, the mucous plug also moves, and will eventually break free and be evacuated in the form of a slimy discharge. The loss of the mucous plug is painless and can also be synchronized with the opening of the cervix. Its color varies from woman to woman, ranging from white, grayish-white, pinkish, beige or brown. It may also contain small filaments of blood, which are in fact the relics of the small blood vessels that were ruptured when the mucous plug detached.

However, the loss of the mucous plug does not necessarily occur at the end of pregnancy or the beginning of labor. It may occur all at once, or gradually, so that the pregnant woman is not necessarily aware of it, as it mingles with vaginal secretions. This loss often occurs a few days before delivery, on the day itself, or at the moment of delivery, but the mucous plug can also be evacuated during the third trimester of pregnancy, without heralding delivery. Although this is often not a cause for concern, it is advisable to consult a health professional. To avoid any inconvenience, you can equip yourself with post-partum menstrual panties.

To signal the onset of labor, other signs should accompany the loss of the mucous plug, such as regular contractions of increasing intensity, or the breaking of the water sac. It's important not to confuse the loss of water or amniotic fluid, which is more or less abundant and very liquid, requiring a quick trip to the maternity ward as the baby is no longer protected from infection, with the loss of the mucous plug, which is more slimy and relatively small in quantity.

How long does it take to give birth after losing the mucous plug?

The loss of the mucous plug is often considered an early sign of labor, but it doesn't necessarily mean that delivery is imminent. This can vary from woman to woman. Sometimes, labor can occur within days of the loss of the mucous plug, but in other cases, it may take longer.

How can I tell if it's a mucous plug?

The mucous plug is a viscous, gelatinous substance that may be clear, pinkish or tinged with blood. It is generally expelled by the cervix as it begins to dilate in preparation for childbirth. However, mucous plug loss can be confused with other normal vaginal discharge during pregnancy. If you have any doubts, it's best to consult a healthcare professional, such as a doctor or midwife, for confirmation.

When is the mucous plug lost?

Mucus plug loss can occur at different times for different women. Some may lose it just a few days before the onset of labor, while others may lose it several weeks in advance.

How much mucous plug is there?

The amount of mucous plug can vary from one woman to another. Some may lose small amounts that can go unnoticed, while others may lose larger amounts that are more obvious.

It's essential to note that every pregnancy is unique, and the signs of labor may vary from one woman to another. If you have any questions or concerns about your pregnancy, it's advisable to consult a healthcare professional, such as a doctor or gynecologist, for personalized advice.

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The information contained in the articles on www-elia-lingerie.com is general information only. Although reviewed by health professionals, this information is not error-free, does not constitute health advice or consultation, and is not intended to provide a diagnosis or suggest a course of treatment. Under no circumstances may this information be used as a substitute for medical advice or consultation with a healthcare professional. If you have any questions, please consult your doctor.