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It can be uncomfortable but not too painful. I've had it done before. If it works, you'll start feeling crampy shortly after. I have heard that some OBs will do it without telling the patient if they are around 39 weeks. If you aren't comfortable having it done, I'd talk to your OB/midwife before cervical checks start. If you are past 40 weeks and a little dilated then it could be worth a try before trying for a medical induction with drugs