As you enter the 40th week of pregnancy, your baby is expected at any time. 40th week of pregnancy is the concluding week. Your wait
for the baby will soon end as your baby could be arriving at any hour.
This time is very exciting as well as challenging. There are various changes occurring in your body. You may also experience various emotions during the 40th week of pregnancy. You would want to do a lot of preparations. You also have to be very careful once you have entered the 40th week of pregnancy. You can start preparing for your baby shower as baby may arrive anytime.
You will experience labor contractions during this period. Your partner can help you with various techniques to deal with labor pain. Your partner can discuss the various techniques with the doctor and then take measures accordingly. Some of these techniques are ineffective while others are not safe. Thus, consult the doctor before practicing any techniques to reduce labor pain.
Your Symptoms: If your contractions last a minute or longer, are about 5 minutes apart, and continue for at least an hour, call your doctor. You might be in labor!
Baby’s Development: Baby may have dropped into the pelvis and is ready to make his debut!
Baby’s Size: 49.8 cm, 3.1 kg (birth length and especially weight will vary).
To Do: Hopefully you will be greeting your baby this week. If not, try to relax and enjoy your last days of pregnancy.
Now your baby weighs somewhere between 6 ½ pounds to 10 pounds. The baby is between 19 to 21 inches in length. A baby boy will be much larger as compared to a baby girl. Now your baby is very healthy and lying with its head downwards. All the bones of the baby will harden by this time leaving behind the baby’s skull. The skull brains need to remain soft so that they can pass through birth canal easily. The skull of new born baby appears like a cone for the first few days following birth.
There are two soft spots or fontanelles on the head of the baby. The structure of baby is designed so well by nature, allowing an easy delivery. The front fontanelle becomes a bit hard in between eighth and fifteenth month and back fontanelle becomes hard between the third and fourth month. The fetus makes increasing moments in order to comfort itself. This may cause considerable pain for mother. The fetus completes its growth and is ready to come out of the womb. The baby starts developing immunities that are needed for survival. The baby is waiting to come out so also the mother is waiting impatiently to welcome her baby.
Changes in your body
In 40th week of pregnancy, you will experience various changes in your body. One of the main changes that you will feel is an increase in the movements of the fetus once again. The fetus grows completely at this stage and tries to gain comforts. This increases the movement of fetus.
The pregnant woman may experience severe pain in her back, increasing visits to toilet and pressure in groin. You may find it difficult to sleep at night due to the excess weight that you are carrying. You might feel uncomfortable due to excess of pressure on bladder, groin, and lower part of abdomen. These pains are called as false pain. You should not underestimate the ability of these false pains to make you feel like they are contractions.
It is time for you to prepare for the delivery of your baby. You will notice a white discharge from your nipples. This is nature’s way of preparing to provide nourishment to the baby. The cramps will increase throughout the body although mostly you will experience these cramps in the legs. You would also have to face issues with circulation along with the excess of weight that you have to carry. You would experience various changes in the body during 40th week of pregnancy.
For labor preparation, you could take various measures in order to comfort and bring ease to your pregnancy. You can lean back and try to shuffle in order to urge a push. You should take some extra efforts and relax the muscles of perineal floor. You can use deep breathing techniques to gain energy. You should allow the contractions to do their work during this stage of pregnancy.
What to expect
Now that you are 40 weeks pregnant, you will have to prepare for delivery. You must exercise everyday as it is beneficial for delivery. Going for a nice walk is sufficient to be considered exercise at this stage. Also consume plenty of water. Despite frequent urges to urinate, keep drinking plenty of fluids.
You should not stress yourself too much and should take adequate rest. You can purchase all the things that would comfort you as your comfort is a must during the 40th week of pregnancy. You can get a body pillow to comfort your body while resting and fetch some sleep at night. You could also get a comfortable sofa to feel comfortable during the day.
A belly belt could be beneficial during the 40th week of pregnancy. The belly belt can ease cramps and swellings. You can also get a good professional massage at 40th week of pregnancy. A good massage would help you to relax for the forthcoming delivery.
While visiting your doctor, be prepared to get various tests done. You may have to undergo a non-stress test, sonogram biophysical profile score and amniotic fluid index. Your doctor will discuss various conditions with you like possibility of going past your due date of pregnancy. You may have to go through induction or a cesarean birth. Inducing is a process used for artificially starting labor when baby is past its due date. In a cesarean process of birth, the birth happens through a slit in the abdominal wall. The pregnant woman is given anesthesia during a cesarean birth.