You are now 36 weeks pregnant, entering the final stages of your pregnancy. This period corresponds to the 9th month and falls in the third trimester. Doctor visits become more frequent as the healthcare provider should carefully monitor your condition, paying attention to signs like blood pressure. Very little time remains until your due date and childbirth can begin at any moment.
In these last few weeks before the baby arrives, it is crucial to have your hospital bag prepared, including the necessary documents. Spend the last few days before giving birth reading informative material about what lies ahead in the few hours after birth, and the first few days with the baby. A lot of focus should be on understanding the baby’s development and pregnancy symptoms you may experience.
36 Weeks Pregnant: Tracing Baby’s Size and Development
During this 36th week of pregnancy, the baby’s development has progressed significantly:
- Height – 47.4 cm (about the size of a bowling ball).
- Weight – 2.6 kg.
- Head circumference – 31.7 cm.
- Abdominal circumference – 32.5 cm.
The baby’s head is in a head-down position, ready for a vaginal birth. The baby’s lungs have matured and can function independently, thanks to sufficient quantities of amniotic fluid. If you feel a change in pressure or vaginal pressure, it could be because the baby has dropped into the birth canal, a sign that labor may begin in a few more weeks.
One essential factor in this week of fetal development is the frequency of the baby’s movements. They indicate its health status, and it is normal for you to feel 1-2 movements every fifteen minutes. If movements seem less frequent, consult your healthcare provider.
Experience of Being 36 Weeks Pregnant: Physical Changes and Symptoms
As you navigate through your 36 weeks of pregnancy, fatigue might weigh on you, especially with the increased blood pressure and swollen ankles. It’s important to monitor your body for signs like Braxton Hicks contractions or a change in the baby’s position. The baby bump is putting pressure on your pelvic area, causing pelvic pain. But don’t worry, these pregnancy symptoms are completely normal at 36 weeks.
In the last few weeks of this final month of pregnancy, it’s advised to stay hydrated and consume smaller meals to manage your digestive system. Monitor the condition of vaginal discharges, as severe problems like serious infection or Group B strep could harm the baby’s health. If your water breaks or the amniotic fluid leaks, don’t hesitate to go to the hospital or birthing center immediately.
The pregnant woman’s menu during the 36th week of pregnancy
While you might be feeling like a bowling ball at 36 weeks pregnant, the pounds accumulated over the past months should not be a reason to slack on food consumption. Avoid high blood pressure by focusing on foods rich in nutrients. Stay away from exotic and unknown foods that could provoke allergies. Remember to read labels carefully.
Preparing for Childbirth at 36 Weeks Pregnant
It’s only a few more weeks until the baby arrives. You can lower the tension in your legs by raising them or consider taking warm baths. Some doctors advise doing massages with vegetable oils. It’s important to consult your healthcare provider if you’re unsure.
Remember to pack your hospital bag with baby clothes and a going home outfit for the newborn.
Ultrasound Insights at 36 Weeks Pregnant
By the 36th week of gestation, the baby’s development is quite advanced, and the baby’s head is ready to pass through the birth canal. Its bones are fully formed and flexible enough to avoid trauma during childbirth. The baby’s skull bones, with connective tissue between them, are designed to withstand the pressure of birth.
Conclusion: Navigating the Final Stages of Pregnancy at 36 Weeks
Being 36 weeks pregnant is a unique journey in the home stretch of your pregnancy. Continue to monitor your body and the baby’s development closely. Your healthcare provider is a vital resource in this process, guiding you as labor begins and as you transition to giving birth. Remember, the discomfort and pressure are only temporary, and soon enough, you will be welcoming your baby to the outside world.
Questions and Answers
Is it safe to deliver in 36 weeks?
Is it safe to deliver at 36 weeks? While it’s ideal for babies to stay in the womb until at least 39 weeks for optimum development, delivering at 36 weeks is typically safe and falls under the term ‘late preterm.’ At this stage, babies generally don’t encounter severe problems. However, they may need extended hospital care for close monitoring. Challenges such as feeding difficulties, maintaining body temperature, and a marginally increased risk of respiratory distress might be present. Despite these potential issues, with the right neonatal care, babies born at 36 weeks can experience normal development and healthy futures.
What should I be feeling at 36 weeks pregnant?
What should you expect to feel at 36 weeks pregnant? This stage in pregnancy typically brings about several physical and emotional transformations. The most common symptoms include heightened discomfort in the lower abdomen and pelvis due to the baby descending into the birth canal, which puts additional pressure on these areas. As your body gears up for labor, Braxton Hicks contractions may become more frequent. Increased blood flow and fluid retention can often lead to swollen ankles and feet. Emotionally, as the due date nears, you might experience increased restlessness, periods of insomnia, and feelings of anxiety. These are all normal aspects of being 36 weeks pregnant.
Do babies born at 36 weeks go home?
Can babies born at 36 weeks go home immediately? Generally, these babies are often allowed to go home with their parents instead of a prolonged hospital stay. However, this decision greatly depends on the baby’s overall health, their feeding capacity, and their ability to sustain body temperature independently. Some of these infants may require a short tenure in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for close monitoring. But once they demonstrate successful feeding, steady weight gain, and stable vitals, they are typically discharged to go home. It’s always a case-by-case basis, prioritizing the health and wellbeing of the newborn.
What should I not do at 36 weeks pregnant?
What precautions should you take at 36 weeks pregnant? It’s crucial to abstain from intense physical exertion and carrying heavy objects. Additionally, maintaining hydration levels and consuming smaller meals packed with nutrients can contribute to maintaining optimal blood pressure levels. Vigilant monitoring of your baby’s movements is key, with immediate reporting to your healthcare provider in case of any significant reduction in activity. Avoid potential sources of infections and uphold high standards of hygiene to evade potential complications. Importantly, do not disregard signs of labor, such as consistent contractions, water breaking, or noticeable decline in baby’s movements. Upon experiencing any of these symptoms, your healthcare provider should be contacted without delay.
Elizabeth Baker is a mother of three, wife, and the passionate mind behind this pregnancy and baby development resource. She balances her love for understanding every stage of child growth with her duties as a parent. When she’s not sharing her experiences or studying child development, Sarah enjoys family time, reading, and practicing yoga. She believes in the power of shared knowledge to enhance the beautiful journey of parenthood.