In just 7 days the last week of pregnancy will arrive. Most pregnant women feel heavy and have discomfort that prevents them from doing routine tasks such as getting dressed or putting on their shoes.
The gynecologist will do an examination of your abdomen to see exactly where your baby is positioned. Another routine test is to examine the cervix to see how it is, if it is thinner at the time it is checked or if there is dilatation.
At 39 weeks gestation, the cervix is preparing for delivery. At this time it is possible to feel the famous Braxton Hicks contractions quite strong.
At any time, labor can occur, so it is important to recognize the symptoms, contractions, and rupture of the amniotic sac, which is popularly known as water breaking. If this happens call the doctor, you are in labor.
Provided below is an index with the 7 points we are going to expand on in this article.
What does the fetus look like at 39 weeks?
When the pregnancy is about to end, the baby is practically unchanged. At 39 weeks gestation, the fetuses weigh about 3.2 kg and are approximately 46 cm long. These data may vary from one pregnancy to another, as some babies may be slightly longer or shorter in length and weight.
As a consequence of this size, it is normal for the mother not to feel much movement of the baby since there is practically no space left for it. Nevertheless, the kicks will continue and will be felt.
On the other hand, a detachment of the white fat or vernix caseosausually occurs in the 39th week of pregnancy. This fat is formed in mid-pregnancy and its function is to protect the fetus from cold and humidity.
Changes in the mother
The tenth and last month of pregnancy is almost over, so there are few changes for the mother-to-be. The uterus of pregnant women changes throughout gestation, going from 500 grams to approximately 1 kg.
The cervix is already prepared for delivery and the bladder is under pressure due to the size of the future baby. In addition, the woman will feel more and more nervous because the long-awaited day is approaching.
Maternal symptoms at 39 weeks
When the woman reaches 39 weeks of pregnancy, she is heavy and has difficulty moving. In addition, pregnant women are often on the lookout for any signs that may indicate they are going into labor.
Some of the most common discomforts and symptoms in the 39th week of pregnancy are:
- Increased number of contractions, similar to cramps.
- Loss of mucous plug.
- Back pain.
- Increased desire to sleep.
In the event of early labor, the woman's water will break and she will expel amniotic fluid. There is no exact way to break water, as it will depend on the position of the fetus. If this occurs, you should go to the hospital immediately.
Recommendations for week 39
The baby is about to be born and, as mentioned above, the woman may feel heaviness in her legs or in her body in general. Therefore, one of the tips for the 39th week of gestation is to try to sleep and rest. In addition, it is advisable to walk as much as possible, unless the doctor says otherwise.
Contractions may be increasing during this stage. When you have increasingly stronger contractions and the frequency decreases, you may be in labor. At this point, you should see a doctor.
Finally, nerves are likely to be on edge. Try to stay relaxed and keep practicing your childbirth preparation exercises.
FAQs from users
Is the mucus plug expelled in the 39th week of pregnancy?
It is possible. The mucous plug is a secretion formed largely by water, although it also has glycoproteins. Its function is to seal the cervix.
This plug usually forms around week 7 of gestation and remains until the end of pregnancy, around week 36-38. When the mucus plug is expelled, the woman may or may not go into labor immediately.
It is also possible that the woman may feel that the plug is being expelled little by little, i.e. progressively. When the mucus plug is gone, labor may occur within hours or even a few weeks.
Can you induce labor naturally?
Inducing labor is totally unadvisable unless medically indicated. Even if you are more than 40 weeks pregnant and your baby is still in your belly, you have to let your pregnancy continue unless otherwise determined by your doctor. However, in post-term or prolonged pregnancies, labor is typically induced to prevent problems in the baby and/or the mother.
Is it normal for the baby to move little in the 39th week of pregnancy?
Yes, the baby weighs about 3200 grams and is about 46 cm long. Therefore, the free space left in the uterus is limited and, therefore, it will not move as much as it did at the beginning when it was smaller.
If you want to know what is going to happen in the next and last week of pregnancy, we recommend you to visit the following article: What is the 40th week of pregnancy like?
If what you want is to know how childbirth is going to be so that you can be prepared when the time comes, you can visit this link: How is childbirth? Preparation, types, and possible complications.
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