40 weeks is how many months?
The wait is over. You have successfully completed your 40 weeks of pregnancy. And your baby will be coming out any time now. This 40 weeks fetus journey seems like the hardest time of your life. But after holding your baby, every bit of it will feel worth going through.
How many months does pregnancy last?
Soon after hitting 40 weeks, you may think it’s over. First of all, yes; the normal span of pregnancy is 40 weeks or 280 days. But it’s no rule that you will go in labor on the exact date.
Secondly, make it very clear that the average pregnancy time is 37 to 42 weeks. Therefore, giving birth anytime between this period is pretty normal.
In fact, it rarely happens that the pregnant ladies give birth to an exactly 40 weeks fetus. Most of the times, they deliver either a week or two before or after the pregnancy.
An average week of delivery for first-time moms
If this is your first pregnancy, things might last a little longer. So don’t panic if labor doesn’t start with you hitting your 40th week. If not interfered, the 42nd week is considered the average week of delivery for first-time moms.
You have survived 40 weeks and it’s just a matter of a week or two now. You will be just fine.
Full term Birth
At the time of delivery, things already are horrifying. On top of that, hearing your doctor using such fancy words makes you worried even more. Don’t lose your calm; full term is a green signal for your baby to come out.
You are considered full term after reaching 39 weeks of pregnancy up till 42 weeks. It means that after 39 weeks your baby is fully ready to come out. There are no risks to your baby at all. His lungs are fully matured and he is ready to take care of himself.
40 weeks pregnant belly
You are officially 40 weeks pregnant now. And the bump is strikingly large and visible. It is the size of a pumpkin. Clothes don’t fit and the weight of the 40 weeks fetus makes you exhausted.
Hopefully, it is the last week. Once the baby is born things will be rapidly going back to the normal.
40 weeks fetus size
Can you believe you have come this far? Your 40 weeks fetus is fully developed and excited to come out. He is a healthy little fellow and weighs over 3.5 kg. He is over 20 inches long and is smarter than ever.
40 weeks pregnant signs of labor
Immediately after turning 40 weeks pregnant, you are more conscious and looking for the signs of labor. It is pretty important to detect your labor well in time and make your way to the hospital.
Following are the signs you should be looking for at 40 weeks fetus stage. And in case you find these signs, inform your partner and rush to the hospital.
Membrane Rupture (Water Breaking)
The very first sign you may notice is a sudden gush of fluid from your cervix. This indicates that the safety bubble of your baby has been ruptured and he is on his way out.
40 weeks fetus Drops Down (Lightening effect)
A week or two before the labor you may feel a sudden drop of your fetus inside your pelvis. The baby has moved down to acquire the exit pose. As a result, you will feel a greater pressure in your pelvis.
It is more appreciable by the first time mothers and you can even feel the bulge shifted downwards as well.
Mucus Plug (Show)
If you are conscious about the signs of labor, you will notice a thick yellowish mucus plug dislodged from your cervix. It was present throughout the pregnancy guarding the exit. Therefore, it’s removal marks the beginning of the labor.
Strong Regular Contractions (Labor Contraction)
The clearest sign of labor at 40 weeks is the change in the nature of your contractions. Before labor, your contractions are weak, irregular, and don’t push the baby down.
But now you have started feeling stronger, regular, and progressive contractions which are pushing your baby out of your body.
Nausea and Diarrhea
All of a sudden, you start having nausea and cramps in your belly; or intense diarrhea sets in for no apparent reason. This all indicates the onset of labor.
Labor is not just a physical phenomenon. Its advent is marked by a rapid alteration in the pregnancy hormones leading to these symptoms.
Your birth canal is now preparing for the delivery as well. The passage is becoming wider and the cervix is dilating for the baby to pass comfortably.
Your cervix dilates up to 10 cm. A size big enough for the baby’s head to pass with a slight degree of squeezing.
Cramps and Pains
As the time comes closer and closer, your cramps become serious and painful. This is not associated with labor itself but depends on the status of the mother.
For that reason, keep your self fully hydrated. Practice quiet breathing and try to calm yourself.
Frequent Urination after dropping down of your 40 weeks fetus
It is not only confusing but embarrassing as well for the mothers to frequently pee. However, nothing is wrong with you and it is definitely not embarrassing.
Your baby has descended into a tight pelvic cavity and has compressed your urinary bladder. As a result of that, you feel the need to urinate frequently.
No signs of labor at 40 weeks
40 weeks of extreme care and patience are done and you are still waiting for your labor to begin. It is common and happens to a lot of mothers. Relax and wait a week or two, it will start on its own.
Reason for overdue
A lot of moms like you want to know the real reason behind the delay in the labor. Unfortunately, no one really knows the cause. However, some theories claim a genetic role in the delay of labor.
As a result, overdue is more common once you have already gone overdue in the past. Now the question is what to do?
When to induce labor?
You are now 40 weeks and you should be showing signs of labor by now. However, if at 40 weeks no signs of labor appear there is nothing to panic. It happens to over 10 percent of the pregnant ladies. And they too go in labor on their own within a week or two max.
First of all, calm down and relax. Secondly, visit your doctor and form a plan. Most of the times, if there is no issue with you or your baby, your doctor will advise you to wait for a couple of weeks.
Ideally, labor should be induced after 42 weeks. But your doctor, keeping in mind the status of you and your baby, can advise induction straightaway. You need to trust your doctor on this.
What are your options?
It may be useful for you to know your options for induction. As it will make the whole thing less scary. Here are the medical options for induction:
- Your doctor can go inside the uterus through your cervix and artificially rupture the membrane.
- You can use prostaglandins which help in ripening and inducing the labor.
- You can have an IV oxytocin which is a potent labor-inducing agent.
However, we have gathered some scientifically proven natural ways of induction for your aid.
- Have a long walk especially in the early morning.
- Apply castor or primrose oil.
- Try spicy foods.
- Have sex.
- Nipple stimulation can stimulate labor.
40 week ultrasound
40 weeks ultrasound is important for both the mother and the baby. You can visualize your baby. His eyes, hair, nails, and ears everything is fully developed. He is excited to come out and meet you.
Doctors like to evaluate the complete profile of your baby at 40-week ultrasound. And makes sure that everything is ready for the delivery. Finally, the most awaited time of your life is here.
What to do when you are in your early stage of labor?
Are you scared of an exhausting and terrifying labor ahead? 12 to 24 hours of extreme pain and cries. Well, here are some tips to cope with your early stage of labor in a better way.
- First of all, relax and calm down. Worrying is not going to help at all.
- Secondly, keep breathing deep and nice.
- You can go on a walk to divert your mind.
- Pack everything you are going to need in the hospital.
- Spend maximum time talking or writing to your baby. It will keep you happy.
- Watch your favorite TV shows or something funny.
- Stay with your partner and ask him to give you a nice massage.
- Record the time and frequency of your contractions.