36 Weeks Pregnant (Fetal Age 34 Weeks)
Your breasts might be leaking colostrum
36 weeks pregnant, your baby is ready to nurse, and your breasts may be ready too - leaking colostrum, the first, very nutritious breast milk. You can read about the magic components of breast milk, here.
Mom may find it slightly easier to breathe now, if the baby is engaged and hence positioned lower in the belly. If you have given birth before, it often takes longer before the baby is engaged, though.
What to expect about...
36 weeks pregnant, your baby is almost ready to go! This is one of the final two weeks where your baby would still be considered premature if delivered now. After 37 full weeks of pregnancy, a baby is considered full term.
Although many babies born at 36 weeks pregnant are perfectly healthy and normal, they may still need some monitoring for some time as a precaution. The sucking reflex is now developed and the further you go into week 36, the less likely it is that your baby would have problems nursing if born.
Their brain is still continually developing at a rapid rate and your baby could even be blinking, especially if you are to shine a light on your belly.
There are a number of positions that your baby could move into this week in order to prepare for their big birth date. While most babies born will move head down for a perfectly normal vaginal delivery, others have a different idea. Breach positioning, transverse, shoulder or brow presentations are also other ways that your new family member may want to try entering the world. If there are any concerns that you may have with your baby's positioning, be sure to discuss them with your doctor or midwife. There are some measures that your health care practitioner may try in order to move your little one into a better position for the birth canal, or you may be scheduled for a caesarean section depending on your own health concerns.
Mom's Bodynesting instinct may kick into high gear this week as you begin to look ahead when you will be bringing your baby home. Many women find a burst of energy during this time that enables them to clean or organize their homes in preparation for the big day.
Don't overdo it, though! You'll soon need that energy both for giving birth and for taking care of your newborn baby around the clock.
Also, if you don't find this endless energy, don't worry! Many women find the last month of pregnancy to be exhausting and do little in terms of cleaning or organizing activities at all. If your body is telling you to rest, then by all means listen and put your feet up!
Many women find themselves riddled with constipation and chronic backaches during this time. The increasing weight of your baby in your lower abdomen does not help, especially if you are doing things around the home or at work where you have to sit for long periods of time or are on your feet for some duration. Try to stretch when you can, put your feet up to avoid swelling and keep mobile if you sit for long periods of time to avoid stiffness.
If you find that something is leaking from your breasts, it is likely to be colostrum, the very nutritious breast milk created for the baby's first couple of meals before the "real" breast milk production has started.
This week your doctor may perform a Group B Streptococcus Test that will help determine if you will require antibiotics during the delivery of your baby. This is a simple swab taken from the vaginal area and is not painful or harmful to you or your baby. The test is not carried out automatically in all countries, and you may want to ask your midwife about it.
You may also begin to have internal exams regularly by your doctor to determine if your cervix is thinning or opening at all during the next few weeks.
I bet you have already started to prepare for D-day? If not, don't wait. Knowing about the process and what to expect really helps, trust me... ;-)
36 Weeks Pregnant VideoIf seeing is believing for you; watch this video explaining pregnancy week 36 in pictures and words.
Diary of a DaughterWhat's it really like being 36 weeks pregnant...? Here's a true diary from a 36 weeks pregnant mom-to-be. (Me..!)
Diary Of A DaughterIt is getting heavy! I find it hard to sleep - almost need to sit up. And walking is painful too. But it is slightly easier to breathe, I suppose it is because our baby is now really positioned low and ready to go.
Despite losing my mucus plug last week, I have very few contractions this week.
What Pregnancy Week 36 Is Like For Other Moms
Click below to see contributions from other pregnant moms to this page...
36 Weeks Pregnant And Dilated Already
Laboring At Week 36
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