Few things are as exciting as the anticipation of welcoming a new baby into the world. For first time moms, waiting to go into labor can be nerve-racking and filled with the unknown. Knowing what to look for during the early stages leading up to labor can be reassuring and help demystify the process. According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information, losing your mucus plug can be one of the earliest signs that your baby is on the way. Hearing this may have you asking, “What does a mucus plug look like?”. Let’s take a closer look at the role the mucus plug plays in preparing the body for labor and delivery.
1. What is a Mucus Plug?
A mucus plug is essentially a complex formation of mucus and cervix cells that begin to form during early pregnancy, reaching its full size at approximately 12 weeks. Charles Ascher-Walsh, MD, the director of gynecology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City explains that the purpose of a mucus plug is to cover the opening of the uterus while a woman is pregnant. This plug acts as a barrier to keep out any harmful bacteria.