The fetus is now too big for the uterus, and it can’t move as it used to due to little space. However, mothers should still count at least 10 movements during the day, between 08:00 and 17:00. If not, they should consult their physician. This article provides an overview on the fetal development, maternal changes, signs and symptoms and some interesting facts about the 39th week of pregnancy.
Did you know that amniotic fluid renews every three hours even during childbirth?
Height: 19.96 inches 50.7 cm
Weight: 7.25 pounds 3288 grams
What Happens to the Baby?
The baby continues to grow in weight. Hormones influence babies as well, and after childbirth, their breast may be swollen. Mothers may also notice liquids at child’s breasts and genitals. This is normal and is expected to disappear in a couple of days. The baby has no more excessive hair, except maybe on shoulders and ears. Their immune system is not completely developed, as they are getting antibodies from the amniotic fluid (after childbirth, babies’ source of antibodies is mother’s milk). Baby’s placenta is heavy almost as the fetus itself, and the umbilical cord length is same as the baby.
What Happens to the Mother?
The maternal body is already preparing for childbirth. Babies in first time mothers are going down, the cervix softens, and it even may start opening. Even though everything is almost ready, there can still be no clear date of childbirth. Symptoms like vaginal secretion, increased appetite, and diarrhea may emerge, but they shouldn’t confuse mothers that childbirth has begun. Breasts are getting bigger by the day, and it is recommended for mother to purchase nursing bra. Gauzes for inside the bra will come in handy, as they soak up leaking milk. Other than that, mothers can now start counting the last minutes of their pregnancy, and some may even already have the baby in their hands. Mothers should not panic if they still haven’t undergone labor as sometimes they can exceed the date for a week or two.
Tips at 39th Week of Pregnancy
The following days are the last days when the mother and the father are alone. Couples tend to immortalize those moments, as there will be no more. Taking several photos of those last “alone” moments is one option. Later in life, those photos bring back memories, and the baby is always thrilled to see them.
Additional Information: Besides Taking Folic Acid supplements, are There Ways to CORRECT Neural Tube Defects in fetus? How Parents Can Prepare Themselves in Raising a Child with Physical Defects?
Most common cause for neural tube is the lack of folic acid. That is why taking folic acid supplements are imperative for mothers during pregnancy. However, there are other factors that can impact baby’s growth and development while in the womb. One of those is smoking. Several studies have discovered that both smoking and exposure to second-hand smoking increases* the risk for neural tube defects in fetus. That is why, it is recommended for mothers to quit smoking, and avoid places where there are lots of smokers. Sea food, especially tuna fish, shark and other big sea fishes contain high concentration of lead. Since lead is heavy metal, when it piles up in the mother’s system, it can lead to serious defects in fetus. While pregnant, it is recommended to avoid sea food, and this applies also for when trying to conceive.
Once parents learn that their child might be born with physical defects, the first days are crucial. These are the days when they are in shock, overwhelmed and still try to grasp the reality. Normal things like telling the news their friends and family seems hard. Caring for a child with physical defects is even more demanding, and parents should prepare for that before childbirth. Parents need to establish a support system that will help them with daily duties and unanticipated crisis. There is no shame in asking for help from friends and family. Next thing on the priority list is to find out and learn as much as they can for their child’s disability. Living in denial doesn’t help neither the parents, neither the child. Not just medical information and details, but also information about programs, support groups, resources, education and everything else is crucial, and parents need to do their extensive research. Joining a support group is essential, as parents find out they are not alone, there is always someone else in the same situation as they are. Fear, anxiety, depression are just some of the feelings that emerge, and need to be overcome when having a child with physical defects.