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CONTRACTION. An abbreviation; a mode of writing or printing by which some of the letters of a word are omitted. See Abbreviations.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
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BRAXTON HICKS CONTRACTIONS | Infrequent, they occur every five to 10 minutes a few times a day Not constant, don't last longer than a few seconds Severity depends on activity levels as the contractions stop when you slow down, sit down or change position Usually quite weak or strong in the beginning, getting weaker with time Felt mostly in the lower abdomen LABOUR CONTRACTIONS | Occur more regularly, usually two to three minutes apart Each one tends to last for about 30 to 90 seconds Remain consistent regardless of your activity level and position Cause a sharp pain | May begin in the abdomen, then moving toward the lower back or vice versa
Kirsty, 26, said: "I started having Braxton Hicks contractions the previous evening but they were not progressing into anything and were irregular.
They told her she had Braxton Hicks contractions and sent her home, despite being two centimetres along.