Are cramps during my pregnancy normal?

Q: I'm 36 weeks pregnant and having cramps that feel like my period. Is this normal?

A: This is very common for pregnant women who are almost to term. However, it's important that your doctor check you to make sure that you're not in early labor. Usually this type of cramping precedes labor; it allows the lower portion of the uterus to thin out, which gets your body ready for labor. Make sure that the doctor checks your cervix to see if it has dilated, which can be a sign of early labor. If it's not early labor, drinking a couple of glasses of water or juice and resting should help quiet your cramps. However, if it persists, let your doctor know.

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