Huge congratulations to all brave mummies, you have reached 9th month of your pregnancy and your baby is about to make his/her appearance. In this last month, you will go through some changes in your body, but before discussing that, let’s have a look at the last bits of your “PREGNANCY WEEK BY WEEK”.
Your baby will be full-term after a week and his/her fetal development is done. Before jumping onto maternal changes, let’s see how your little baby is getting ready and heading towards his/her arrival.
Week 36: Your baby is getting strong and mature and from next week, he/she will be full term. Your baby’s Vernix Caseosa and Lanugo is now shedding off, though some babies do born with some Vernix Caseosa traces on them.
Your baby is busy practicing grabbing, gripping, swallowing, breathing and sucking and weights about 6 lbs and approximately 18 inches long from head to toe. These weights and heights are average, but babies do born with weight and height according to their genetics and race.
Week 37-40: From this point on wards, your baby is full term, this means he/she is fully ready to born and can live without any neonatal/medical support. Your baby’s immune system is strong and can manage to fight against germs in the outside world, though breast feed is very vital for babies to boost their health and immunity.
Your baby’s nervous system, lungs and other organs are fully developed and functioning and heart is beating at the rate of 130-160 beats/minute. You might feel less movements now as there is not enough room inside your womb for your baby to wiggle around.
Your baby is now in head down position and might went further down which is called Lightening.Lightening can happen as early as 37 weeks or as late as 40 weeks or a couple of days before birth. Your baby is still gaining weight and might be somewhere between 2.5-3.5 kg, but every baby is different.
My son Abraham was born exact at the beginning of 37th week and was little less than 5 lbs, but he was absolutely healthy and active so after spending 48 hrs in the hospital, I came back home. They kept me for 48 hrs because they just want to keep an eye on the baby as he was small, though everything was fine and he was with me independently without any neonatal care/support.
Kija was born at 40 weeks+1 day and was 6 lbs (i.e., small according to average baby weight) but she was absolutely fine and healthy and next day I was discharged. So, the weights and heights are just average of most of the babies, but babies weight and height also depends on their race and genetic.
CHANGES IN MOTHER:
Well mums, the time has come now and you are heading towards your EDD (expected date of delivery), but be ready for your baby to born before or after the due date as only 5% of babies worldwide are born on their due dates, that is why the delivery date given according to our LMP (last menstrual period) and date scan is called Expected date of delivery 😊.
You might be anxious and depressed as well because of the worries in your mind about child birth and life afterwards. Because of these worries and the pressure of growing baby on your tummy, back and pelvis and causing pain, you might be finding it very difficult to get a good sleep and relaxing time. Well, every Mum to be has to face this time and I myself also felt the same anxiety and fear of labour and how to take care of baby afterwards. Best thing to keep in mind is that, we all learn by experiencing from the time of our birth and after that as well, and every change in life also comes with some anxiety but believe me you will not only manage to cope and learn but also enjoy the happy life with a little baby in your arms. After holding the baby, all worries will vanish away. So, these anxieties and worries are just temporary and try to relax by getting a bath with your favourite aroma or have a relaxing massage afterwards and lie on bed and relax. I was doing these all thing and after a relaxing bath, I used to drink a cup of chamomile tea (advised by my doctor) which helped me a lot in relaxing and sleeping.
After discussing sleeping problems, let’s discuss tiredness and body ache. As your baby is still inside, he/she is growing and putting on weight, this causes pain in back, pelvic and puts pressure on diaphragm and rib cage as well.
You might be feeling nerve pain in legs that starts from lower back and goes all the way down to the toes.
This is called sciatic pain and it happens due to pressure on sciatic nerve. Well body pain, head ache and tiredness will get better by a relaxing massage, bath, foot Spa at home or Salon where ever you feel comfortable and also by lying down using a maternity pillow for support especially between legs. This will help a lot in minimizing Sciatic pain, pelvic and back pain and relaxes tired legs. With the growing bump, you must be feeling difficulty in balancing your body and your walk is sturdy. For that, use flat and comfortable foot wear and avoid shoes with heels.
Soon you will feel Lightening i.e., you will feel that your baby has dropped down.
Yes, though your baby was already in head down position but now dropped into your hip bone cavity and getting ready to make his/her first appearance. Lightening can occur as early as 37 weeks and as late as 40 weeks and in rare cases even after 40 weeks or a couple of days before birth. Your vaginal discharge will increase from now onwards and your will also notice a mucus plug with bit of blood, this is called “Show”, this mucus plug covers your cervical opening and now it sheds off which means it is making a way for your baby’s birth. Show can also happen a couple of hours before birth or a couple of weeks before birth and in some women, it happens when labour starts. So, it varies….:). With the growing baby, your baby’s movements are restricted but your baby must move atleast 10 times per day. If your baby moves less than that, then go to your doctor or midwife for check-up. You are still feeling Braxton Hicks but your contractions might get little bit painful. If your feel that painful contractions are happening and you are suspecting about labour pains, then go and see your midwife or doctor or call them for better advice about what to do as per your condition. So, mums, its now time to finalize your stuff like hospital bag, medical record and other things that your need to take to the hospital with you.
Mummies, the time has arrived now and soon you will be feeling overwhelmed with love and joy as you hear your baby’s first cry and then holding him/her in your arms. What a beautiful feeling it is that no words can express. You have nurtured your baby inside your womb with a lot of courage and ups and downs in your condition,and now it’s time to nurture your beautiful bundle of joy in the outside world with the warmth of mummy’s and daddy’s love. Don’t forget to keep your bags and everything ready and a camera as well to capture those unforgettable memories…😊…