Motherhood & Parenting
Woohoo! You have completed most of your pregnancy successfully. 31 weeks are down and only 9 more weeks to go! Very soon your darling would be cooing in your embrace and not inside your womb. By now you must have been done with your maternity shoots, childbirth classes, and maternity leave planning. If you have not heretofore, do it as soon as possible.
You are already knee-deep in your pregnancy and the baby would pop out soon. You might be missing the good old days from your second trimester when you were actually enjoying the pregnancy. This nostalgia would not upset you much when you would focus on the time left for your adorable baby to arrive.
Also, keep your maternity bag ready and stock up your baby supplies beforehand. We know you still have a few weeks left before your due date but it would be wise to have it on standby for an emergency. The bun in your oven is nearly baked and ready. We are sure your Honey Bun would be the sweetest of all.
The size of the baby at 31 weeks is pretty the same as the size of a standard coconut. It is about 15 3/4 inches (40.3 centimeters) tall and weighs 3 3/4 pounds (1,707 grams) approximately.
At 31 weeks pregnant, your baby is becoming a smartypants. It is developing new brain connections at a rapid pace. Brain development keeps progressing even after the birth of the baby. Hence, it is a good sign that it has already kickstarted this development. In fact, your little Einstein can already pick up signals and process information from it all five senses. Astonishing, isn’t it?
It can now sense light, hear sounds, feel your touch, and perceive signals. It can also smell but can’t due to being covered in amniotic fluid. As soon as it has its first whiff in the air, it would be your scent that it would smell and instantly fall in love with you.
After being 31 weeks pregnant, you would find yourself noticing more defined patterns of wakefulness, movement, and rest. This is because your baby has almost reached its birth length, although it has to put on a few more pounds before birth. Your baby has become drowsy and taking long stretches of sleep many times in a whole day.
You would find your baby a little busy and occupied on its own at 31 weeks pregnant. It would be swallowing, making cute faces, hiccuping, sucking its thumb, and pedaling around its feet and arms inside your womb. You would find its kicks and punches getting a little stronger every passing day. You can even notice some kicks on the surface of your 31-week baby bump.
Meanwhile, your baby’s lungs are also maturing and learning to breathe properly. In 31 weeks your baby’s lungs would have increased its breathing movements to 30% to 40%.
Whether you are planning to breast-feed your baby or not, the milk pricing mammary glands have already begun their work. They would produce a yellowish, thin consistency, liquid called colostrum. Your uterus is also getting itself prepared for childbirth.
Other than these, the old pregnancy symptoms like swollen legs, pregnancy brain, and nasal congestion would continue to linger around until your baby is born. All these symptoms that would end on your baby’s arrival are all the more reason to bring your baby to this world.
1. Leaky breasts
Every pregnancy is different from another. Some pregnant women may find themselves having these leaky boobs as early as week 16 while others experience it later in the second or third trimester of their pregnancy. You may find your nipples leaking creamy colostrum. It is a sign that your body is preparing itself for nurturing and nourishing the baby after it is born.
2. Braxton Hicks contractions
If you did not experience this pregnancy symptom even once until now, then you are most likely to experience it after being 31 weeks pregnant. These are occasional contractions in your uterine lining called Braxton Hicks. In case, you have experienced it, you might find these contractions getting stronger.
These contractions are irregular and can occur at any time and go away with activity. They do not become more intense or more painful by getting closer than they generally are. It is time to implement those coping mechanisms and put them to action that you learn in your childbirth lessons.
Your baby would be positioned and have its head down towards your cervix at 31 weeks pregnant. You would notice this position of your baby in your ultrasound scan. Also, if you are lucky enough to get this scan at the right moment, you can also witness your baby blinking its eyelids slowly. Babies, when in the womb, tend to blink 6 to 15 times an hour.
While adults blink about 19-20 times in a minute. At this point in time, your baby’s physical features have developed and can be seen on a 3D scan. In fact, you can see its entire face, see your baby sucking its thumb, blinking, reacting to sounds, and moving around quite a lot.
Consider Breastfeeding plans
This is the right time to consider your breastfeeding plans. Whether you want to go with it or not and what are the other alternatives. Ask your doctor, friends, and family to get a better understanding of things and determine the most suitable option for you. Also, if you go for breastfeeding, you can learn about it from classes and lactation consultants. Besides that, make sure you and your partner are on the same page about the plan.
Monitor facial swelling
Pregnancy can cause your face to swell a little bit. But in some cases, it is not the pregnancy weight rather a sign of preeclampsia, a disorder that generally develops late in pregnancy. It can occur after week 20 and can have severe effects on your body. Consult your doctor if you find too much swelling on your face.
Your baby is almost 9 weeks away! These 9 weeks would get over in a blink and you would finally be able to fit your finger in your baby’s tiny fist. So stay strong and take care of yourself!