What Does Back Labor Feel Like?

You know how some women clutch their back when they're in labor? Thank you, back labor. Here's what it feels like and how to ease the pain.
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ByThe Bump Editors
Updated
May 2017
woman experiencing back labor

With back labor, you feel discomfort (aka pain) in your lower back as labor progresses, usually right above your tailbone. Sometimes, back labor seems to set in if baby’s head is pressing against your tailbone, or if baby is in an otherwise awkward position.

But even if baby is perfectly aligned, you might not be in the clear. A few (unlucky) women simply tend to feel labor in their backs. Will you be one of them? There’s no way to know until you go into labor. The experience of labor varies from woman to woman, and from pregnancy to pregnancy.

If you do feel the pain, try standing under a warm shower, using hot or cold packs, having your partner massage you or apply pressure with their hands or a tennis ball, or changing positions. Of course, an epidural will do the trick too.

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