38 weeks pregnant

You’re 38 Weeks Pregnant: What You Need to Know

Since your pregnancy is now on its full term, you should be alert in case you experience some signs of labour. Here are some things you should still be aware of as the due date draws near.


How Big Is My Baby?

By this time, your baby is approximately 19 inches in length or as long as a leek. He or she is also weighing around 104 to 109 ounces with them experiencing a fast growth—with an additional weight gain of about 8 ounces per week.

Leeks pictured against a dark grey background
Your baby’s about as long as a leek these days!

My Baby’s Development

Despite your baby nearing its due date, there are still many changes happening on the baby’s body.

On the 38th week, the child is now slowly shedding its lanugo, a soft layer of hair which coats and covers the vernix and skin. If the terminologies are still new to you, vernix refers to the waxy coating around his or her body which serves to protect the baby’s skin from the flowing amniotic fluid around the womb.

Your baby’s brain and nervous system are undergoing some fine-tuning at this stage of the pregnancy. This way, he or she can deal with all the stimulation which he or she will experience at birth.


What Is My Baby Doing?

If you are excited to see the baby, he or she is the same with you. Around week 38, your little one is now readying itself to go out that it has “dropped” itself lower into your pelvis. Because of this, you might experience some more pressure on your bladder, which makes you urinate more frequently than before.


Belly Ultrasound

As mentioned, there will be a constant weight gain from the baby due to the baby fat that is accumulating in some parts of the body such as the shoulders, knees, and elbows. If you view your baby in ultrasound, you will notice his or her chubby arms and legs from the additional weight gain.


My Changing Body—Week 38

Because of the irregularity of hormones in your body, your body will produce and retain more fluids than normal. It increases the amount of fluid circulating inside you. Hence, you might notice that both your hands and legs will start to swell as a result of the immense liquid.

To alleviate this, it is best that you drink more water so that you can flush out some excess fluid easily. Make sure to rest your feet up when sitting down to avoid putting pressure on these swelling.


Common Symptoms

Week 38 shows various signs of pregnancy symptoms, these being the following:

  • Showing of Blood – You might experience some vaginal discharge. Its colour can range from pink to brown. If there is some tinge of this on your underwear, there is a significant chance that you will face labour sooner rather than later.
  • Insomnia – Since your mind is anxious about when the baby will come out, you might also experience difficulty in sleeping. Just grab a book and drink tea to help you relax and fight your insomnia.
  • Diarrhea – Loose bowel movements or diarrhea is your body’s way of creating enough room for your child to emerge.
  • Braxton Hick Contractions – At this stage wherein you are 38 weeks pregnant, contractions are typical. Don’t worry; these contractions do not mean that you are already on labour. Less painful contractions are called Braxton Hicks or practice contractions. Just switch your position, and they will most likely disappear.

How Is My Life Changing

You might be feeling a little paranoid every single time since you are aware that you will undergo labour anytime. You might be worried and be anxious, hence altering your daily routine sometimes.

If you feel that this is happening, make sure to seek support from your family, friends, and professional. They can help you deal with this. It is better if you even talk to other moms who have the same experience as yours. This way, you’ll have a little bit of real-life perspective on how to cope up with your emotions.


Week 38 Mommy Checklist

Some tips for you and your partner to accomplish this week 38:

  • Install a baby car seat.
  • Ready your baby feeding plan with your doctor.
  • Finalize the baby’s name.

Tips For The Partners

This week is the start of possible labor. Hence, you and your partner should be ready just in case this happens. Make sure that you have packed your hospital bag and placed it at the door. This way, you and the mother won’t have to stress about this the moment she experiences labor.


A Sneak Peek To Your Week 39

You are now so close to seeing your baby. There is a significant chance that you will feel regular contractions and the breaking of your water as signs of labor.

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