Can you believe that it is the 39th week of pregnancy already? We cannot either! It seems like it was just a couple of weeks ago when you started this journey and made us your partner. We have shared this journey together (minus the cramps, achy breasts, and swollen feet lol). But still, we feel as much a part of this journey as you are. Feel free to send us the pictures of your newborn after it is born.
How far along are you in your pregnancy?
39th week of pregnancy equals eight months and three weeks. Yes, you heard it right! Eight months and three weeks. Now it is just a matter of a week or two before this ends and you will have your baby boy or baby girl in your arms.
Passing these weeks surely felt like riding a roller-coaster ride. Some of the parts were amazing like listening to the first heartbeat of your baby or finding if you are going to have a boy or a girl. And some parts were equally brutal. Those countless trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night, annoying pukes and heartburn, they never made the situation any better.
But here you are. Into one of the last weeks of pregnancy and finally ready to deliver the baby. We are so proud of you.
Your baby at week-39
Your baby at 39 weeks of pregnancy goes through the following changes:
Your baby at the 39th week of pregnancy is about 20 inches long. This equals to the size of a full-grown pumpkin. In a normal pregnancy, this is the maximum size and length that a baby can attain.
An average baby weighs about 7.3 pounds in the 39th week. When a baby is born, its weight ranges between six to nine pounds. And it is in the last weeks that the baby attains the maximum weight. Your baby right now is at its birth weight.
White baby skin
The skin of the baby at the 39th week of pregnancy changes from pinkish hue to white color. No matter what the eventual skin tone of your baby will be, he or she is going to be white around this week. Most of the skin pigmentation occurs after the baby is born and almost all the babies look alike at this point of pregnancy.
Fully developed brain
Yesss! The brain of your baby is fully developed in this week. If you look at the brain of your baby through an ultrasound, you will find a fully developed brain. If, God forbid, your doctor finds an abnormality in the scan then there are some confirmatory tests that must be done immediately.
The movements of your baby at the 39th week of pregnancy are very vigorous. These movements are not like those kicks that you used to feel during your pregnancy. These movements are indications that your baby is almost ready to pop out and it is preparing itself and your body.
As compared to the baby movements that you experienced in the previous weeks or months of pregnancy, these movements are stronger and more powerful and will be felt in the lower region of your pelvis.
We know that babies cry a lot and especially in the starting weeks after birth. But those cries don’t come with a lot of tears. Even in the last weeks of pregnancy, your baby’s tear ducts do not develop completely.
It is after a month after the delivery of your baby that its eyes begin to produce tears.
In the 39th week of pregnancy, your baby is considered full term. Delivery of the baby in this week or in the weeks after this is called a full term delivery. The chances of survival of the baby after a full term delivery are almost 95%.
Delivery of the baby at 39 weeks
As the baby is full term at 39 weeks, the delivery of the baby around this time is perfect. Delivery at this time lowers the chances of developing complications that could arise with later or an early delivery.
We are often asked about the harms that a baby could suffer from if it is delivered at 39 weeks. There are absolutely no risks if the baby comes out at 39 weeks.
Your body at 39 weeks
Carrying a baby inside your belly at the 39th week of pregnancy can be very tiring. Because even though your body is prepared to deliver the baby, it is also tired from a nine-month long journey. Following changes occur to your body at 39 weeks:
As gross as this sounds, unfortunately, most of the mothers experience diarrhea during the 39th week of pregnancy. We know that the thought of getting loose stools when you are about to deliver your baby through your vagina seems unhygienic and embarrassing but this is just how it is. You might be among those who do not get this complication.
Braxton hicks’ contractions
As your due date arrives near, the intensity of the Braxton hicks contractions increases. These contractions are just the body’s way to prepare itself for the delivery process.
Are you among those who feel no contractions at 39 weeks? And are you worried about the well-being of your child? The fear is totally natural. But what you have to realize is that every human body is different and every pregnancy has its own dynamics. So if you are not feeling any contractions yet, you don’t have to worry at all. Just calm down and relax.
Discharge at 39 weeks
The discharge at 39 weeks that is coming out from your vagina is supposed to be clear to a little slimy. There is usually no foul smell coming out of it. But if you notice any change in the fluid that is coming from your vagina in terms of color, smell or viscosity then report to your doctor immediately. It could be a sign of infection in your urinary system.
What are the signs and symptoms of labor at 39 weeks?
Knowing that the delivery can happen any day, the following are the signs that you must watch out for:
- Water breaking
- Spurts of energy
- Passage of mucus plug
- Bloody discharge
- Intense pains lasting for 15 to 50 seconds
These signs confirm that you have gone into labor.
Modes of delivery
Usually, doctors adopt two modes of delivery.
Normal vaginal delivery
This type of delivery happens when the baby passes through the birth canal or vaginal canal without having to use any surgical instruments. Most deliveries happen by this procedure.
In a few cases, a small procedure is done where a cut is made into the vaginal wall to increase the room for baby’s head to pop out. Special scissors do this job.
Cesarean section is a surgical procedure in which they put the mother into anesthesia and take the baby out surgically. Following cases involve this method:
- Breech presentation
- Twin or multiple pregnancies
- Hypertensive mother
- Diabetic mother
- Failed induction of labor
- Fetal distress
- Low birth weight babies
No matter which route your doctor adopts for you, just know that you and your baby are going to be fine.