Pregnancy Stages: Week 38
Your baby weighs around 3.2kg and measures around 50cm. All his organs are well developed and ready for life outside the womb. His lungs are producing surfactant, a substance which prevents the air sacs from sticking to each other once he is born. Your due date is close by and very soon you will be able to hold your little angel in your hands.
Waiting is your game now. You will never know when your baby will decide to get out. You should be ready to welcome him. Make sure that your bag is ready; the baby accessories are all in place, cleaned and well organized. Your feet and hands are swelling. Make sure to call your doctor in case of a sudden swelling in your face, puffiness around your eyes and weight gain. It can be a serious condition called preeclampsia.
Your visits to the bathroom are frequent and the itchy sensation on your belly is uncomfortable. Braxton Hicks contractions are more frequent and preparing your body for labor. This is the best time to practice breathing technique. You may also experience false labor. You should count the numbers of contractions in an hour and their intensity. Braxton Hicks contractions are not intense, non-rhythmic and weaken when you change position. Your doctor may prescribe a non stress test (NST) which can be performed at the hospital. It is a non-harmful test where they attach a monitor to your belly to track the baby’s heart beats and you will be asked to press on a button each time you feel the baby moves. This test will give an idea about the baby’s status in your belly.
As you body is preparing for labor, your breasts are getting ready for the baby. You will experience a leakage of colostrum from your nipples. Use bra pads to absorb this leakage. Try to keep active and perform a 10mn walk each night. If you have a sibling at home, explain to him why you should go to the hospital and who will take care of him when you will be away. Make a plan with him and attach it in his room. Enjoy the last days of your pregnancy with your partner!