An incompetent cervix also called a cervical insufficiency, occurs when weak cervical tissue causes or contributes to premature birth or the loss of an otherwise healthy pregnancy.
Before pregnancy, your cervix — the lower part of the uterus that opens to the vagina — is normally closed and firm. As pregnancy progresses and you prepare to give birth, the cervix gradually softens, decreases in length (effaces) and opens (dilates). If you have an incompetent cervix, your cervix might begin to open too soon — causing you to give birth too early.
If you have an incompetent cervix, you may not have any signs or symptoms during early pregnancy. Some women have mild discomfort or spotting over the course of several days or weeks starting between 14 and 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Be on the lookout for:
1. A sensation of pelvic pressure
2. A new backache
3. Mild abdominal cramps
4. A change in vaginal discharge
5. Light vaginal bleeding
You can't prevent an incompetent cervix — but there's much you can do to promote a healthy, full-term pregnancy. For example:
1. Seek regular prenatal care
2. Eat a healthy diet.
3. Gain weight wisely.
4. Avoid Alcoholic substances