Preterm labor is when your body gets ready for birth too early in your pregnancy. It is premature if it starts earlier than 3 weeks of due date.
Risk factors are overweight or underweight at time of conception, hypertension, diabetes, smoking, alcohol, pregnancy induced hypertension, gestational diabetes, uterine abnormalities, previous history of preterm delivery, any severe maternal infection. Report to obstetrician if severe backache, cramping in lower abdomen, fluid leaking from vagina, vaginal bleeding.
Preterm birth is the most important single determinant of adverse infant outcome hence prevention and early detection is important.