How Long After Baby Engaged Is Labour (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 8 Hours

The wait of nine months is a really long one. For every woman who has been through the phase or is currently undergoing the first or subsequent pregnancies, it is crucial to know about it all. The childbearing process comes with a lot of myths and remedies from a large variety of sources, be it elderly people or the internet.

It is rightly said that no two pregnancies are the same. Likewise, the duration between the bay’s engagement and labor also varies widely. Though it is a common notion that these two happenings are strongly correlated, the truth turns out to be different at times.

How Long After Baby Engaged Is Labour

How Long After The Baby Engaged Is Labor?

Initially, it is quite important to understand what exactly is the engagement of the baby. The relation with subsequent labor can be demystified hereinafter. This engagement, in literal terms, implies that the baby is getting ready for delivery.

It is essential to demarcate the thin line of difference between ‘getting ready’ and ‘ready’ to be delivered. This point of fact leads to a large number of confusions regarding the duration, symptoms, and other things related to pre-partum procedures.

As the outer world prepares for the arrival of the baby, the inner organs also try to gather all the strength they have, for the ultimate process of delivery. The average duration is capped at eight hours after the woman is able to see and feel visible signs of engagement. These signs are not governed by an exhaustive list of symptoms but are unique to every pregnancy.

Some have a painful experience while others do not get even the slightest clue of this set of internal changes. The visible differences include a slight or considerable lowering of the baby bump. The pregnant lady might feel an internal pressure that extends from the diaphragm to the abdomen, similar to the gravitational pull.

This average duration is applicable from the second pregnancy onwards. The first one might take a bit longer owing to the unprepared metabolism and other related reasons. It is advisable to perceive such changes as normal unless they last more than a day, and become unbearable with time. The signs of labor should not be ignored at all.

In Summary:

First pregnancy24 hours
Subsequent pregnancy8 hours

Why Does It Take That Long For Labor After Baby Is Engaged?

It takes a considerable amount of time for labor after the baby is engaged. This delay can be attributed to a host of physiological as well as psychological reasons, including the occurrence of pregnancy. Since engagement happens around the later weeks of the third trimester in most of the normal cases, it has come to be a sure shot sign of imminent labour.

The physical reasons include the elasticity of the inner walls of the passage. In the case of the first baby, the duration is longer owing to this very reason. The whole body has to come into an alert state in order to finally deliver the baby. Since the reproductive organs have no prior experience of such a process, the signals take a longer time.

In addition to this fact, the pregnant woman also takes a bit longer to understand what exactly is going on in and around the lower abdominal area. Other physiological reasons include uterus complications. Pre-existing conditions like PCOS and anaemia have no direct relation with delayed labour.

As far as exceptional cases are concerned, certain sexually transmitted diseases might further enhance this delay if not recognized early on. The mental health of the mother-to-be is equally important for timely delivery.

The health of the foetus is directly related to that of the mother housing it in her womb. Therefore, proper psychological conditions must be maintained in order to avoid any and every effect of stress. Engagement does not imply immediate labour at all.


Staying abreast with authentic information is quite essential for pregnant women as well as the caretakers, be it the immediate family or the husband. The confusion regarding the duration between baby engagement and labor has been brought to bay.

Still, the patient is recommended a thorough examination in case of any abnormal signs or even the normal ones which persist for a seemingly longer duration. Once the engagement has taken place, it is a bit difficult to predict the expectancy of labor at times. The gynaecologist might surely help in such cases.


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