Technology and Pregnancy: Contraction Apps and Their Limitations

Not all patients will need contraction apps. Image by Army Medicine

Not all patients will need contraction apps. Image by Army Medicine

Apps to track contractions on your smartphone or tablet can cause the battery to run down. This is a problem with all free apps due to the advertisements that run on them- if your phone dies during a contraction, all your contraction history will be lost, so sometimes there is a benefit of writing down and timing manually.

After reading some of the comments about Android’s Contraction Timer, there are also problems with bugs, the timer getting stuck, and the inability to add contractions manually when the phone isn’t around. The gaps within the system cause problems with accurately telling if someone is in labor.

Getting the Information to a Doctor or Midwife

Once you know that it is time to contact your doctor or midwife about being in labor, you may want to share all the details of your contractions – some apps will let you send the information by email. The Contraction Master for the iPhone and Android will send the details that you track in an easy to read table form.

Kicking and Water Breaking Feature

During labor, you should still feel your baby kicking, but during the process, it is easy to forget to think about this unless you are prompted to do so. Some contraction apps have a kicking feature to easily track the rate at which your baby kicks, as well as a feature to time when your water breaks. The downside to this is it requires knowing that your water has broken! From personal experience, it is not always obvious, and can happen as a slow trickle.

Do You Need a Contraction Timer?

Timing apps are handy to have on the phone, and offer a quick way to time contractions and automatically store the data. You will need to make sure you have your phone charger close by though, depending on the length of your labor! If you don’t have a smartphone, there are contraction timers available online for free as well.


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References:

Contraction Master. Contraction Master Mobile App. Accessed April 1, 2013

Appszoom. Contraction Timer – Android. Accessed April 1, 2013.

Software, M. Contraction Monitor Free – Contractions Counter and Timer. (2013) Pregnancy Magazine Apps. Accessed April 1, 2013.

© Copyright 2013 Alexandria Ingham: Tech, All rights Reserved. Written For: Decoded Pregnancy

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