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Contraction (childbirth): Wikis

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In medicine (obstetrics), a contraction is a motion of the uterus[1] as part of the process of childbirth. Contractions, and labour in general, is one condition that releases the hormone oxytocin into the body. Contractions become longer as labour intensifies.

Prior to actual labour, women may experience Braxton Hicks contractions, sometimes known as "false labour."

The uterus also contracts during menstruation. These contractions may be uncomfortable or even painful, but they are generally significantly less painful than contractions during labour. A hot water bottle or exercising has been found to help. Since every pregnancy is different, a doctor, midwife or other competent professional should always be consulted before any action is taken to reduce the pain. Some popular methods may be harmful to the mother and/or the baby, or may actually worsen the pain or lengthen the labour.

The uterus and vagina contract during female orgasm to encourage male semen to reach the fallopian tubes. These contractions may not be noticed by all women; pregnant women are more likely to notice these contractions by late 2nd and 3rd trimesters.

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