At 38 weeks pregnant, all his body systems are good to go, his tiny hands can now firmly grasp your finger and his tear ducts are forming so that he can communicate his discomfort with you when he finally comes home. Any bodily changes from this point on will be small. All you can do now is wait for hormones that start the labour contractions to do their part.
Your changing body
The amniotic fluid levels are rapidly decreasing at this point and the baby’s head has shifted further down into the birth canal easing pressure off your upper organs. While you are still fatigued and there is still a lot of pressure on your cervix, you can now breathe easier. With his head down there, it might feel like he is going to fall out. Swollen feet are a common sign of pregnancy at this stage of pregnancy but pay attention if you notice swelling in your hands and face. If it comes with a severe tummy ache or headache, it is a bad sign pointing to a bigger problem like pregnancy-induced hypertension and you should see a doctor immediately.
38 weeks pregnant is a waiting game that is likely to be riddled with anxiety from your end. Especially if you are a first time mum, your mind will be full of questions and worries about things that could happen during the birth. It is wise that you share these with your healthcare provider on this week’s visit.
Familiarize yourself with how to birth a baby and watch out for signs of active labour. Watch out for contractions that are sharp, consistent, close together and accompanied by back pain. Another sign of labour is the waters breaking or bloody discharge which indicates a dilating cervix. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is advisable to rush to the hospital.
This week’s tip: You are 38 weeks pregnant which means that your baby will be home soon. So, now is the time to grab any chance you can get to spend uninterrupted time with your partner. It will be several weeks after birth before you and he can resume sex after pregnancy. Work at maintaining that physical bond this week. You can cuddle, have him give you massages – you have earned them and they will go a long way in relieving the back ache or just spend some quiet time together