39 weeks pregnant: what can I expect?
Are you counting down the days? There is not much to do other than wait in the final weeks of your pregnancy. Majority of mums go into labor around 39 weeks of pregnancy. At this stage you can go into labor at any time, listen to your body and watch out for signs of labor.
Physical changes in you at week 39
- Since being pregnant you will notice random hairs popping up on your chin, face, breasts, nipples and other areas. If you find the hairy appearance uncomfortable it’s okay to have them waxed off. If waxing is painful you can shave the excess hair off, but you might need to shave more frequently because hair growth will be quicker.
- Due to hormonal changes fewer tears are produced in your eyes during pregnancy, this can make your eyes feel dry and irritated. Sometimes your eyes can feel gritty like you were in a dust storm. If the dry eyes really bother speak to your doctor about getting some eye drops.
- You may have some good news in the weight gain department. At 39 weeks of pregnancy you won’t gain much weight but your baby will. The vital fat underneath your baby’s skin is still being laid and this fat is essential to protect your baby’s soft skin.
Emotional changes in you at week 39
- You are just a week away from your expected due date. It’s natural to be edgy about thinks and don’t be alarmed if you feel like you are going to have a panic attack. Talk to your partner about how you are feeling and what you are experiencing. The best way to deal with negative feelings is to stay positive and laugh about things you can’t control.
- Listen to your body’s signals of when labor is going to start. The two signs of labor are when your waters break and you have rhythmic contractions that may be painful.
- If you are a first time mum, and you have never been around kids you may be daunted at thought of having a baby. You will worry about hurting the baby or not feeding the baby properly. These are all normal feelings and every woman feels a certain anxiety about having a baby. Once the baby is born they can’t imagine what they were worried about.
How’s my baby doing?
- Your baby now weighs around 3.5 kilograms this week; this is the average weight of most new born babies. Your baby would not have grown much in height in comparison to the past few weeks and will measure around 53 centimeters.
- Your baby’s lungs will continue to mature until the day of the delivery. Your baby’s tiny lungs will continue to breathe and produce the all important protein lipid complex known as surfactant.
- Your baby’s brain continues to develop with more nervous connections being laid down in its brain. Continue playing nursery rhymes, music and stories to your baby. Research has shown talking to the baby while in womb promotes early simulation.
Useful tips for week 39
- Swimming is a great way to relax in the final weeks of your pregnancy. The water takes the stress of your joints; you can run in water, relax and float aimlessly. As long as you waters haven’t broken you should be fine in a swimming pool.
- As you reach the final stage of your pregnancy you will be finding it difficult to sleep because of your belly. If the space in your bed isn’t enough for you to feel comfortable you can ask your partner to shift to another bed.
- Use this time to do the things you love. Read a book, watch that favorite movie that you missed, call a friend and chat for long hours, make yourself a refreshing cool juice and relax.
- If you have older children you can do joint activities that you both enjoy, to relax and bond. Some mums find coloring books and watching cartoons with their children relaxing.