What does it mean when the baby drops?

I saw a friend of mine today who said, “Looks like the baby dropped!” and then a lightbulb went on in my head. I hadn’t put two and two together, but I did look in the mirror yesterday and think, “Gosh this belly looks awfully low! I don’t remember it being like that before…”

 When the baby drops, also known as “engagement” or “lightening” it means that it has engaged itself deeper into your pelvis, positioning itself for labor. In first pregnancies this can happen days or weeks before labor, while in subsequent pregnancies it can happen during labor. So although it’s an indication that your body is getting ready to give birth, you can’t be sure how soon labor will actually start.

The good news about engagement is that you may find it easier to breath and have less heartburn. The down side is that the additional weight in your pelvis compresses your bladder even further, and trips to the bathroom may increase. Some women find the pressure uncomfortable and may even have difficulty walking and performing other tasks. In any case, you can be aware that the baby is getting ready to exit, and look forward to the upcoming delivery of your child!

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