Gaining about half a pound (0.23 kg) each week, your baby probably weights over 4 pounds (2 kg) and measures over 19 inches (48 cm) long--what a little bundle of love!
His knees will curl up towards his tiny chest as he begins to assume the classic "fetal" position. Because there is a little less room to move around in, your baby is a bit quieter now, storing up energy and getting ready for his grand entrance.
Your Body This Week
As delivery day draws closer, your excitement will grow right along with your tummy. At the same time, don't be surprised if you are starting to feel as if you will be pregnant forever!
You're still gaining about one pound (0.5 kg) per week, but at least half of that weight is going directly to your baby. You'll also continue to feel short of breath and may find that you need some extra rest, so take those naps as often as you need them. While it's generally safe to have sex during this time (check with your doctor to be sure), you may find you are too physically uncomfortable for your traditional romantic experiences. You and your partner may need to be a little more creative when it comes to intimacy!
Feeling The Burn?
The Thai food might have looked extremely good on your plate and tasted just as wonderful. But now that it has hit your stomach, you can feel the flame. Many pregnant women experience some heartburn early on in pregnancy. But as the baby takes up more and more room, the chances of having more pain or discomfort are even greater now. The most effective heartburn-reducing strategy is simply to not have a lot of food in your stomach at one time. Eat smaller, more frequent meals, eat slowly, and avoid eating right before bed. Learn more about helping heartburn, including an interesting strategy involving chewing gum.
Don't Duck These Squats
Is your body ready for the rigors of labor? Have you spent time developing the muscles to push when you need to the most? You still have time. The "Duck Squat" strengthens and stretches the muscles in your lower back and legs, opens your pelvis, and takes full advantage of gravity:
- Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip distance apart.
- Hold on to something stable and gently lower your body into a squatting position.
- Maintain this position for 15 seconds initially, building to longer periods later.
- Instead of coming back up, lower yourself to the ground by placing your hands behind you, one at a time, and support your weight with your hands while lowering yourself to the floor.
- Keep in mind to shift your weight to the outsides of your feet to relieve pressure on your knees.
Learn how exercise helps ease labor pains.