Your baby face is now smooth and getting a little chubby, as baby is laying on fat stores over the next weeks in preparation for life outside the womb. Most babies will have turned head down by this time in preparation for birth. If your baby were to be born now, it would have a greater than 90 per cent chance of survival.
You will be feeling strong, regular fetal activity. Your baby’s kicks are strong and your may be able to see the outline of a small heel or elbow pressed against your abdomen. At the end of this month your baby is about 16 to 18 inches (40 to 46 centimeters) long and weighs around 4.5 to 5.5 pounds (2 to 2.5 Kg).
By now you are starting to feel a bit ungainly as your centre of gravity shifts and your stomach continues to grow larger. Try to stand up straight and practice good posture at all times. Your ribs may begin to feel sore as the baby pushes up against them, and those constant trips to the bathroom return, as baby presses on your already cramped bladder. Your naval may disappear, and you may have a dark line, called the linea nigra, running down your abdomen.
Many of the discomforts you have been experiencing the last few months with constipation and shortness of breath are becoming more of a problem. Braxton Hicks contractions will increase. You may have difficulty sleeping, both because of your size and because of the activity of your baby. Rest as much as you can! You may begin antenatal classes, and now is a good time to shop for baby.
After your 32nd week, your health care provider will probably want you to come in every two weeks so that your pregnancy can be more closely monitored. He or she will assess the health of you and your baby by checking your weight, blood pressure, urine, fetal heartbeat, fundal height, size and position of the fetus, edema, varicose veins, and other symptoms. Discuss your birthing plan with your provider and pain management during labor and delivery. Come to your appointments prepared with a list of questions and problems you want to discuss.
Remember to pack your bag so that you will be ready to rush to the hospital when the time comes.