Your babys progress - Week 35
Baby’s digestive system is putting on its finishing touches in preparation to take baby’s first meal in a few weeks’ time – drops of colostrum from your breasts. While baby is in your belly, all of his nutrition comes from the blood surging through his umbilical cord. Your baby's placenta now covers around 1/3 of the inner surface of your uterus and processes around 12 litres of blood per hour to keep baby well fed and happy. Once baby is born in a few weeks, he will need to suckle for nutrition and absorb his food through his stomach and digestive tract, just like the rest of us.
With baby’s first meal in mind, it's time to look forward to one of the most important things you'll do for baby - namely, keep him alive with nothing more than your breasts. Baby will initially suck colostrum until your breast milk production begins, usually 48 hours or so after birth. Once the milk comes in, baby will probably want to have two-hourly snacks at the milk bar until he’s worked out a feeding regime that suits him.
Scientists theorise that your baby is currently practising eating by ‘breathing’ and tasting the amniotic fluid. Scientists studying foetal movements have found that in week 35 of pregnancy, there is a significant increase in foetal breathing activity between 1am and 7am, apparently followed by increased baby movements. The time baby spends breathing and moving is also related to maternal mealtimes, which deliver a glucose hit to baby (as well as you).
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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