This week your baby weighs almost 2.5kg and is nearing 50cm in length.
As you begin the five week count down until you finally get to meet your little one in person, your little boy or girl is continuing to put on body fat in preparation for meeting you! Your baby now looks exactly like any newborn and by the time they are born, they should have about thirty percent body fat, giving them that cute chubby baby look; this is also necessary to keep them warm when they leave the warmth of your womb behind them.
Your baby continues to practice sucking movements so that he or she can breast feed with ease after birth.
They may also be moving further down your pelvis in anticipation for when the big day comes! You might feel a little pain due to these movements, do not be alarmed as this is normal, unless the pain grows more intense and is consistent.
Your baby’s brain is developing rapidly, however his or her skull remains soft, to allow for brain growth and also flexibility of the head which will be squeezed a lot during childbirth.
It is time now to look out for signs of labor. One sign of labor is a considerably thicker discharge which maybe tinted pink or even a bit blood speckled. This is actually the start of your mucus plug dropping, the mucus plug is a lump of tissue which blocks your cervix and prevents unhealthy bacteria from getting into your womb and potentially harming your baby. The dropping of your mucus plug is not a symptom of immediate labor, and may occur a couple of weeks before your body actually goes into labor.
Just like in the first trimester, you may be feeling the frequent need to visit the ladies room, only, unlike in the first trimester, your discomfort is caused by your baby obliviously using your bladder as a pillow, not by pregnancy hormones. Do not cut back on fluids!!! Try to empty your bladder as thoroughly as possible by leaning forwards (as much as you can with your big bump in the way!), and perhaps wear a pad in case of any leakages.
You may be prone to feeling emotional and weepy this week as well as a sense of growing impatience you’re your pregnancy will be over. It is natural to feel conflicting emotions when you understandably have had enough of being pregnancy and the associated discomforts and just want your normal body back, and also you are excited to meet your long anticipated newborn baby, but at the same time to be filled with trepidation that the birth goes well and that your baby is healthy, as well as being nervous at the responsibility of a new baby and all that parenthood brings. Be kind to yourself; there is not much longer to go and you are doing a great job.
If you have any symptoms that concern you it is important to consult your doctor as soon as you can.