pregnancy

By pregnancy week 39, if your baby is still in utero then their eyes will now be large, around ¾ the size of an adult eye. The eyes themselves grow only slightly up until adolescence but the lens develops right throughout life. At this stage, however, its neural networks are not yet sophisticated enough for them to focus. Although color cones and visual cells are present in the retina, the vision in a newborn remains poor for the first few weeks after birth while the eye and eye color continues to develop. The color usually develops once they are exposed to natural light.


Pregnancy 39 Weeks

Their breathing is now rhythmical with them making around 40 breathing and chest expansion movements every minute. Genetics will determine how much hair they have on their head at this stage, they may have a thick head of hair, a few wispy strands or absolutely no hair at all. This is nothing to be alarmed at and will not determine the texture or thickness of their hair in later years.

Their breathing is now rhythmical with them making around 40 breathing and chest expansion movements every minute. Genetics will determine how much hair they have on their head at this stage, they may have a thick head of hair, a few wispy strands or absolutely no hair at all. This is nothing to be alarmed at and will not determine the texture or thickness of their hair in later years.

Your baby should be so low down in your pelvis by now that you have probably exchanged discomfort in your upper abdominal area for pressure on your bladder instead. If your baby’s head has not engaged this far down yet then this can also occur quite naturally as late as the labor itself. It is worth noting that 95% of babies do not arrive on their predetermined due date. There’s a 4-week window from weeks 38-42 that is regarded as normal and safe in medical cirlces. Although a month can be a long time to wait, be sure to be ready at any given moment. Perhaps leave a voicemail on your phone along the lines of “we’ll be in touch as soon as the baby has arrived”, keep your hospital bag ready, remain mentally focused and remember to eat well and get lots of sleep.

By the end of pregnancy week 39 your baby will measure up to 20.75″ (52.7cm) and weigh in at around 7.9lbs (3.59kg).

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Congratulations, in pregnancy week 37, as you approach the end of your 3rd trimester, you are now officially considered ‘full term’. Welcome to the ‘waiting game’. Feelings during this time can vary widely between women. Some can return to feeling utterly exhausted all the time with all the extra weight they are carrying around (this is where those earlier pregnancy exercises will come in handy) while others can experience a whole new lease of life, seeing a return of their appetites and energy levels as the baby has become self sufficient now and is no longer draining away all of your most vital nutrients and minerals. If you are expecting twins, then the wait could well be over for you this week as the average gestation for twins is 37 weeks.

Pregnancy 37 Weeks

Your baby will now pretty much spend all of their time in cycles of sleeping, dreaming, waking, moving and sleeping again. You may even find that you come to identify with these. Twins have even known to become quite playful with each other at this stage. Twins have been filmed pre-birth where one baby will pat the wall of the abdomen, sending sound vibrations across to the other baby who will respond by patting back.

As you have now reached full term, the weight you are carrying can offset your center of gravity making movement slow and arduous. Nevertheless, many women will begin to experience a phenomenon known as ‘nesting’. This is a final preparation for the baby’s arrival and can see the mother wanting to clean the house literally from ceiling to floor, spring cleaning in a way that appears out of character, such as whitewashing walls, carpets, curtains, windows, inside the oven, fridge and every dusty corner reachable.

By the end of pregnancy week 37 your baby will measure up to 20.25″ (51.4cm) and weigh in at around 6.6lbs (3kg).

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By pregnancy week 36 the maximum amount of amniotic fluid will be surrounding your baby now and after this week they will begin to reabsorb some of it, along with the lanugo and vernix which is often seen in the baby’s first bowel movement, post birth, known as meconium. It is also during this week that you will probably have another appointment with your midwife and if there is any cause for concern then you will be offered a late pregnancy scan.

Pregnancy 36 Weeks

This scan will be given to determine if you have any bleeding, to check the function of the placenta or if a low-lying placenta has moved up, to determine your baby’s position (especially if in breech), assess the baby’s growth and to measure the amount of amniotic fluid you have if you are overdue.

There may be many reasons why a baby is not engaging at this point. A lot of second time moms experience this quite routinely. Nevertheless, this scan will determine if there is any cause for action required. Occasionally, the placenta or a fibroid, for example, could be preventing engagement. This is certainly worth knowing before the onset of labor.

During the later stages of pregnancy you may see letters like ROA, LOA, ROP or LOP written in your pregnancy notes.

R = Right
L = Left
O = Occipito, meaning the part of the baby that is going to be born first
A = Anterior, meaning front (back of the head is towards your front)
P = Posterior, meaning back (back of the head is towards your spine)

Anterior positioning is always favorable as labor tends to be shorter and less painful. Posterior positioning can cause backache during labor and delivery can take a little longer.

Therefore, a baby who is:

LOA – is lying on your left side with their back towards your front. You may feel kicking toward the right side of your bump.
LOP – is lying on your left side with their back towards your back. You may feel kicking all around the front and find that you have backache.
ROA – is lying on your right side with their back towards your front. You may feel kicking to the left side of your bump.
ROP – is lying on your right side with their back towards your back. As with LOP you may find kicking all over the front and find the you experience backache.

By the end of pregnancy week 36 your baby will measure up to 20″ (50.8cm) and weigh in at around 6lbs (2.73kg).

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