Early labour is also known as the ‘latent phase’. It is the time when your body begins to prepare for ‘established’ labour. Whilst the latent phase can vary widely between different women it can be described as a period of time, not necessarily continuous where the womb begins to contract irregularly and causes the cervix to thin and start to open.
Remember, every woman’s labour is different and sometimes it can take a long time. This is normal. If you think you are in the early stages of labour the main thing to remember is to stay calm and relaxed if you can.