Sunday, March 14, 2010
36 weeks and counting...
Congratulations! Although she may have a few more weeks to go, your baby is considered full term at the end of the 36th week. The only organ that still needs some time to mature is the lungs. While you may be ready to be NOT pregnant, remember that every day your baby spends in the womb increases her chance of the prevention of breathing difficulties.
This week, your baby may drop further into the birth canal in preparation for delivery. This makes breathing a lot easier for you, but walking becomes more difficult. You may be startled when your baby stretches into your ribs and bangs her head against your cervix. She is surely beginning to run out of room in those cramped quarters. (I can definitely feel her banging around in there but don't think she has dropped yet)
If she is not head down yet, your doctor may schedule an “external cephalic version”, which is a manual manipulation of the baby, turning her head down. There is a lot of pressure involved, but it can be a successful way to avoid a breach birth. (She was head down at our last appointment)
The average size of babies in the 36th week is 19 inches long and 5 ¾ pounds in weight. (Doctor says "well, you're not going to have a small baby") Your baby is gaining more fat every day, and may be even forming those cute dimples around her elbows and knees. Her gums are very rigid, and she will be ready to nurse or bottle-feed when she is born. (from smartmomma.com)