Human Growth and Development

Birth and Lactation

How long does labor last?

The length of labor differs with every woman. Even the same woman will experience labor differently with each pregnancy. In general, dilation is the longest stage of labor. It can last for several hours to several days, especially for the first-time mother. The early phase of labor is the longest. Active labor may last from three to eight hours, although it can be shorter or longer. Transition is the shortest part of dilation. It may last for only 15 minutes. Expulsion (delivery) may take only a few minutes to several hours. Delivery of the placenta usually takes only 5 to 10 minutes and is usually no longer than 30 minutes.


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