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Braxton-Hicks contractions are just one of the many symptoms of pregnancy that you'll probably experience. Most of these contractions don't begin until sometime after week 20 of a pregnancy, and some women don't even notice them until they are much closer to their delivery date. What are they? Braxton-Hicks are practice contractions that are simply readying your body for the real thing in the future. Your hormones are actually signaling your body to begin the slow process of childbirth. What differentiates Braxton-Hicks contractions from the real thing involves several factors.
* They are usually painless.
* They only last for about 15 to 30 seconds long.
* They are in the front of your belly, causing the top of your uterus to get very hard.
Often, you can simply change positions to stop them, or you can practice breathing techniques while they are occurring.