3.2.2  Uterine contractions

The frequency, length and strength of the contractions should be monitored and recorded every half hour. Frequency indicates the number of contractions the woman has in ten minutes. Count them. Length refers to the amount of time each contraction lasts. Measure the time on your watch (if you have one). Strength indicates the severity of pain experienced during each contraction; ask the mother to tell you about this.

In normal labour, as the labour progresses the contractions become more frequent, they last longer, and they feel stronger to the mother (more painful).

3.2.1  Assessing the progress of labour

3.2.3  Dilatation of the cervix