Your babys progress - Week 34
Congratulations on baking that baby as well as you have been! You will be happy to know that if your bub wants to make her way out of your cosy belly between 34 and 37 weeks of pregnancy (rather than staying put and baking in your tummy until full term), she is likely to survive. Premature babies born at this time may need a short stay in the neonatal nursery or have a few short-term health issues. From now on, your baby has a greater than 95% likelihood of surviving a premature birth and in the long run will do as well as a full-term baby in terms of meeting milestones.
This is also the time that baby is likely to drop into the pelvis and start getting ready for her descent into the birth canal. For some mothers-to-be, this can result in stabbing back pain as baby starts to press on your sciatic nerve. If that's the case, get off your feet and do some spine-lengthening stretches to help baby move OFF that poor throbbing nerve. Your baby's head engaging into the pelvis can also bring cramping sensations and discomfort as well as the characteristic waddle of late pregnancy! You may now find you need to go to the toilet more often too. Ah, the joys.
Baby is now rapidly gaining white fat, and could have little dimples forming at the elbows and knees along with creases around her wrists and neck. Her bones will continue to harden and the waxy vernix covering her skin could be thickening. Despite baby’s increasing strength, she will start dropping her rate of movement in these last few weeks, thanks to her restricted womb space. If movement ceases for over an hour, drink something cold, lay on your side and wait for something to happen. Most midwives or doctors will want to know if you don’t feel baby move in a two-hour period.
Just like adults, all babies are different and develop at varying rates in the womb. This information gives a general idea of your baby's development and progress.
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This article was written by Alex Brooks for Kidspot, New Zealand's best pregnancy resource.
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