What to expect when water breaks

Updated: Apr 27, 2019

Sometimes, the amniotic sac can burst suddenly when you least expect. Read on so that you can be prepared when it happens.

It may sound silly but this is a possible scene. One day, you suddenly find some clear liquid leaking from your bottoms and initially, you may think that you have wet yourself. The truth is that the amniotic sac (water-bag) has just ruptured and you are leaking amniotic fluid. This is a real emergency. Get ready your maternity bag and zoom to the hospital. But no rush, you have some time. Usually, it is safe to go within 1-2 hours unless you had a previous history of fast labour.


The rupture of membranes (ROM) differs for everyone. For some, it is a slow drip that wets their undies. Others have a rapid gush that feels like they’ve peed in their pants.

ROM may be continuous till delivery. When ROM happens, head for the hospital. Most women will start to have strong labour pains and deliver within a day.

If you're past 35 weeks, your doctor will usually induce labour so that you can deliver baby soon. This prevents infection to the baby.


If you're preterm, it is a tough decision and your doctor will discuss regarding the risk of prematurity versus infection. It may be beneficial to wait so as to give baby some more time to grow. Every day of keeping baby in the womb increases survival rate by 4%.


Antibiotics will be given to prevent infection with steroidal injections to hasten baby's lung maturity. You have to stay in the hospital till delivery to observe for infection. Bring lots of magazine and your laptop to keep occupied.




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