During week 38 of pregnancy, the baby has grown a cm – it is about 51 -53 cm long and weighs about 3.3 to 3, 5 kg. Lungs are ready to breathe air and vocal cords cannot wait to produce his first scream! His skin is soft and pink, the lanugos and vernix caseosa (fluff and creamy layer of protection) have disappeared.
Eye color is not for sure yet determined: if the baby has blue eyes at birth, it is likely that during his first months of life, it will change. The little one has the same gestures and mimic it will have after the birth.
And the future mother …
In the week 38 of pregnancy, not much has changed, common symptoms such as back pain, indigestion, heartburn continue (except for breathing, which should be easy). You’re very heavy and clumsy, you easily lose your balance, the movements slow and made with caution.
Watch the preeclampsia symptoms: it can reduce the amount of oxygen and nutrients that the baby receives. Excessive swelling of the extremities, but especially of the face, headache and dizziness and fainting are visible signs of the disease.
What to do in week 38 of pregnancy:
- Company. Your husband is working and cannot always be with you. And because you feel tired, heavy and clumsy even going to the toilet is a challenge, so a support would be useful. And because you may feel anxious, stressed, anxious, it may be more useful to have good company. Therefore, from week 38 of pregnancy, that may be the last, you can ask a loved one to stay with you.
Your mother would be pleased to be your support and help when needed. If not, a close friend who has no obligation to work every day. Either way, company relaxes you, stops you from worrying too much and helps with small household tasks that may be too difficult in your condition. Think of how good and refreshing it is to have someone beside you when labor starts! Friends and relatives are made to assist you!
- No going out. Avoid prolonged going out in town! Call your friends to visit you at home instead of going to cafes or other places. If you need fresh air, go out for a little walk, but not too far from home and always around the home (always take your phone with you). The daily shopping should have been for a while the responsibility of someone else. Your only concern is to rest and relax while waiting for the moments that you will keep your baby in your arms.
- Practice relaxation techniques and pain relief. You must be prepared (as much as possible) for the time of onset of the labor. Practice breathing techniques, get a CD / playlist with songs that have a soothing effect on you, practice gentle massage on the hands, feet, temples.
- Labor with or without epidural? At the next medical examination, talk to your doctor and settle in what way the labor should go. Many mothers choose epidurals, involving a minimum of pain during childbirth while being, however, completely lucid. The bad part: you cannot get out of bed and lower blood pressure can slow the labor while pushing becomes harder. In addition, some unpleasant side effects are fever, headache, backache.
Therefore, you can choose “mobile” epidural, which is easier, you can move your legs and hips and pushing is easier. But you are immobilized in bed and the pain is more intense than in the first case. And finally, you can choose a completely natural labor, only with non-medical techniques to reduce the pain. You, however, need to remember that pain is very powerful and makes this decision responsibly.
If you choose a totally natural birth, you can rely on painkillers only by massage, a hot shower, breathing techniques, meditation and emotional support of your husband, but all they can do is only calm down, which can have a practical influence on the pain just to a small extent. But many mothers say that the suffering is worth 100% because the “reward” is more beautiful than you imagined!