Welcome to Week 40
Congratulations! This is the last week of your pregnancy, and it’s highly probable that you will be welcoming your baby into the world this week.
Update on Your Body
You will not experience any new changes this week, nor are you likely to gain any weight. Your cervix will, however, dilate and undergo effacement – opening up, softening and elongating to prime itself for your baby’s birth. This week is a countdown to your baby’s grand arrival.
Update on Your Baby
Your baby will lose some more lanugo this week, but may still retain some on the shoulders, arms and along the folds of the skin. The bones have hardened by this week. However, the skull is still pliable, and the skull bones haven’t fused along their suture lines yet. This is to allow your baby’s head to pass through the birth canal comfortably. Consequently, your baby’s head will appear like a cone in the first few weeks of his or her birth. There will be two soft spots on the skull too, known as the fontanelles. The back or posterior fontanelle fuses when your baby is around 3-4 months old, whereas the front or anterior fontanelle fuses at about 8-15 months.
Your Baby’s Size
20.2 inches, or the size of a watermelon.
Tips for an Expectant Mom
Although this is the final week of your pregnancy, be prepared to cross your due date. Your doctor may advise you about appropriate measures in such a scenario.
Educate yourself on signs of labour – thick, blood-stained mucus, leaking of amniotic fluid, pain around the back, abdomen and thighs, or contractions that last for 30-90 seconds are some signs.
Tips for an Expectant Dad
Be prepared for a possibly late arrival. Help your partner be patient and encourage her during this time.