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39 Weeks Pregnant: Signs, Symptoms, and Other Information

39 Weeks Pregnant_ Signs, Symptoms, and Other Information

Congratulations on making it through the 38-week mark, and welcome to week 39!

Let’s talk about the signs, symptoms, and all the essential information you need to know at this stage. 

We’ll make sure you’re well-prepared for the amazing adventure ahead. 

Your Baby’s Development at Week 39 

Your Baby’s Development at Week 39

Your baby’s development is almost complete, and they are getting ready to enter the world.

Remember the importance of prenatal vitamins during your pregnancy. 

These vitamins play a crucial role in your baby’s development. It reduces the risk of certain birth defects and ensures they’re healthy.

Let’s look at the changes inside the womb and what you can expect.

Baby Can’t Cry Yet

At 39 weeks, your baby can’t cry yet. This may sound surprising, but it’s because their lungs are not yet filled with air. 

They don’t need to breathe independently in the womb since oxygen comes from the placenta. Their lungs will expand after you give birth.

But inside the womb, your baby communicates through movements, kicks, and even hiccups.

Baby’s Skin Starts to Whiten 

You might notice an interesting change in your baby’s appearance inside the womb. Their skin, which was once red and wrinkled, starts to whiten. 

This happens because the skin absorbs a waxy substance that covers the skin. As a result, their skin loses some of the redness and becomes smoother. 

This process is normal and indicates that your baby is getting ready for the outside world. 

Once born, your little one’s skin may still have a whitish or mottled appearance. This will adjust to its natural tone in the days following birth.

How Big Is My Baby at 39 Weeks?

At 39 weeks, your baby is about the size of a small pumpkin, measuring around 19 to 21 inches. They weigh approximately 7 to 8 pounds. 

Your Body at 39 Weeks

You’ve reached 39 weeks, and your body is doing incredible things to prepare for childbirth. As you approach the final stretch, it’s normal to experience some pregnancy fatigue

But fear not, I’ve got your back with some helpful tips and insights on embracing the last moments. Let’s dive into what you need to know.

It’s Almost Time to Give Birth

You’re at the end of your pregnancy journey, and it’s almost time to welcome your little one into the world. 

At 39 weeks, you may experience signs that labor is approaching. These include Braxton Hicks contractions, your baby dropping lower, and a feeling of pressure in your pelvic area. 

Stay tuned to your body and any changes you notice, and make sure your hospital bag is ready to go.

Early Signs of Labor

As you approach your due date, watch for signs of labor. These may include contractions, backaches, and pelvic pressure. 

You might also notice a pinkish or brownish discharge known as a “bloody show.” Stay alert for your water breaking, which could be a gush or a slow leak of amniotic fluid. 

If you experience any of these signs, it could mean that labor is starting soon. Reach out to your healthcare provider to discuss what to do next.

Preparing for a C-section

If you’re preparing for a C-section, staying informed and ready is essential. Discuss the procedure with your healthcare provider so you know what to expect. 

Plan for post-surgery recovery by arranging help at home and packing a hospital bag. 

Familiarize yourself with C-section aftercare instructions and potential complications. Remember to ask any questions you may have to feel confident and prepared for the big day.

Common Symptoms You May Experience

Common Symptoms You May Experience

At 39 weeks, you may encounter a range of common pregnancy symptoms. From Braxton Hicks contractions to backaches, these experiences are all part of motherhood.

In this section, we’ll explore these common symptoms. I will also offer insights to help you navigate this final phase of pregnancy.

Let’s dive in and address any questions or concerns you may have. 

1. Braxton Hicks Contradictions

Braxton Hicks contractions are mild contractions that can occur during pregnancy. Unlike true contractions, these contractions are usually painless and are at a lower intensity. 

They may feel like a tightening sensation in the belly and subside with rest or a change in position. 

These contractions are a normal part of pregnancy and should not cause concern. If you experience any unusual symptoms, contact your healthcare provider.

2. Changes in Fetal Activity

As your due date approaches 39 weeks, you may notice changes in your baby’s fetal activity. Their movements may feel different due to the limited space in the womb.

You might feel more rolls, nudges, or hiccups instead of big kicks. It’s normal for the movements to remain consistent, but their intensity may decrease. 

But if you ever feel concerned about fetal activity, contact your healthcare provider.

3. Heartburn or Indigestion

At 39 weeks, heartburn or indigestion is a common discomfort due to the pressure on your stomach. 

It may cause a burning sensation in your chest or throat, especially after eating or when lying down. 

Try eating smaller, more frequent meals, and avoid spicy or greasy foods. Also, sleeping with your upper body elevated can help. 

If heartburn persists, consult your healthcare provider about remedies suitable for pregnancy. Remember, it’s a temporary issue, and relief is possible!

4. Bloody Show

The bloody show refers to the discharge of a small amount of blood-tinged mucus from the cervix. It can be a sign that your body is preparing for labor. 

As the cervix softens and dilates, the blood vessels may rupture.

This is a normal and natural part of the late stages of pregnancy. If you experience heavy bleeding, contact your healthcare provider for guidance.

5. Loss of Mucus Plug

At 39 weeks, the loss of the mucus plug is a sign that labor is near. The mucus plug is a thick substance that seals the cervix, protecting the uterus. 

The mucus plug may discharge as the cervix begins to soften and dilate. It can appear as a small amount of thick, clear, or bloody discharge. 

Losing the mucus plug doesn’t mean labor will start, but it’s a sign that your body is getting ready for the big day.

6. Stretch Marks

Stretch marks are thin lines or streaks that form on the skin due to rapid stretching. They often appear on the abdomen, breasts, hips, and thighs. 

While you can’t prevent it, using a good stretch mark cream for pregnancy may help keep the skin hydrated. 

Embrace your body’s changes, as these marks are a natural part of pregnancy. Remember that they will fade over time after childbirth.

7. Diarrhea

Diarrhea is loose, watery stools that occur more than usual. It is due to hormonal changes, a sensitive digestive system, or certain foods. 

If diarrhea persists, contact your healthcare provider for guidance.

8. Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are swollen blood vessels that are common during pregnancy. 

They may cause itching, discomfort, and pain during bowel movements. Maintain a high-fiber diet, stay hydrated, and avoid straining to avoid hemorrhoids.

Warm baths and over-the-counter creams can provide relief. If symptoms persist, consult your healthcare provider for proper evaluation and management. 

9. Pelvic Pain

Your growing baby can put pressure on the pelvic region, causing pain.

It may feel like a dull ache, sharp twinges, or pressure in the lower abdomen and pelvic area. Practice good posture, take breaks to rest, and use a pregnancy support belt to ease the pain.

Gentle exercises like pelvic tilts can also help. If the pain becomes severe, seek advice from your healthcare provider.

10. Backaches

Backaches result from the strain on your lower back due to the weight of your growing baby. Hormonal changes also contribute to loosening ligaments, adding to the discomfort. 

To ease back pain, use a pregnancy pillow for back support while sleeping. Practice good posture, avoid heavy lifting, and wear supportive shoes. 

Gentle exercises can strengthen your back and provide relief. If the pain persists, consult your healthcare provider for guidance and appropriate measures.

Tips to Help You Through Week 39

Tips to Help You Through Week 39

You’ve come so far, and the countdown to meeting your little one is on! This section contains valuable tips to help you navigate this final stage. 

We’ve got you covered, from dealing with common symptoms to preparing for labor. Embrace this magical time, and let’s make the most of these precious moments.

1. Check If Your Water Is Broken 

Checking if your water broke is essential. If you experience a sudden gush or a trickle of fluid from your vagina, it may be that your amniotic sac has ruptured. 

Contractions might follow, but not always. Use a clean pad and lie down for 30 minutes to check. If the fluid continues to leak, your water is most likely broken. 

Contact your healthcare provider immediately to discuss the next steps. Prompt action is crucial to ensure a safe and healthy labor and delivery.

2. Try an Anti-Home Facial 

At 39 weeks, pampering yourself with an anti-home facial can be a relaxing treat. Start by cleansing your face with a gentle cleanser and a steam session to open your pores. 

Exfoliate with a mild scrub, then apply a nourishing face mask. Relax for 10-15 minutes while the mask works its magic. 

Rinse off, pat your face dry, and finish with a hydrating moisturizer.

3. Follow the Food Suggestions From Your Doctor

During your pregnancy, it’s crucial to follow the food suggestions from your doctor. 

They can help you with questions, such as whether consuming eggs and cream cheese is safe for you. 

Your doctor will guide you in making healthy and safe food choices to nourish you and your baby. Focus on your health and the well-being of your little one by following their guide.

4. Take a Nap If Needed

At 39 weeks, taking a nap if needed is a great way to recharge and manage pregnancy fatigue. Listen to your body’s signals and rest when you feel tired or overwhelmed. 

A short nap can boost your energy levels and improve your well-being. Find a comfortable spot, set an alarm if necessary, and indulge in a quick snooze. 

Focus on self-care during this time. Remember that a little rest can go a long way in helping you navigate the final stages of pregnancy with ease.

5. Don’t Panic If You Experience “Lightning Crotch” 

Experiencing “lightning crotch” is common and nothing to panic about. It’s a sharp pain in the pelvic area caused by your baby putting pressure on the nerves. 

While uncomfortable, it’s a normal part of late pregnancy. Changing positions or applying a warm compress may offer relief. 

Remember, your body is preparing for childbirth, and these sensations are temporary. If the pain becomes severe, consult your healthcare provider.

6. Do Nurse-Recommended Exercises If Your Baby Is Breech

If your baby is breech, try nurse-recommended exercises to encourage optimal positioning. Perform stretches exercises to create space for the baby to turn head down.

Additionally, perineal massage can help prepare your body for birth. Massaging the perineal area can increase flexibility and reduce the risk of tearing. 

Always follow nurse-approved instructions and talk to your healthcare provider for personalized guidance.

7. Prepare for Electronic Fetal Monitoring 

At 39 weeks, prepare for electronic fetal monitoring during labor. It’s a standard procedure to track your baby’s heart rate and contractions. 

Your belly holds a small device, while a belt holds a sensor against your uterus. This allows healthcare providers to watch your baby’s well-being throughout labor. 

Familiarize yourself with the process and discuss any concerns with your healthcare provider. 

Electronic fetal monitoring is a valuable tool to ensure your and your baby’s safety and health.

8. Be Patient

As you approach 39 weeks, being patient is key. Labor and delivery are unpredictable, and each birth experience is unique. Trust in your body’s natural process and stay calm. 

Spend this time choosing the best labor and delivery gowns. Choose breathable, soft fabrics, and consider gowns with easy access to medical procedures. 

But above all, be patient with yourself and the process. Your baby’s arrival will be worth the wait, and you’ve got a team of healthcare providers ready to support you.

Conclusion

Remember that the journey of pregnancy fills you with excitement and anticipation. Each step is a part of the incredible process, from preparing for labor to embracing the changes.

Keep in mind the valuable tips and advice we’ve explored here, and don’t forget to take care of yourself. Soon, you’ll be on your way to week 40!

Take a deep breath, stay positive, and get ready to welcome your little one into the world.

Nayna Llenos
Nayna Llenos

Hi, I’m Nayna!
I’ve always wanted to be a mother, and I’m lucky and blessed to have two wonderful children to care for and love.
Despite this blessing, there are times wherein I do wonder if I truly am the mother my children need. Am I giving them the right food, care, and discipline to them?
But that is the beauty of parenting — you grow along with your children as they flourish to be their wonderful selves!
I wish to share my experiences with motherhood and how these tips can help you in your parenting journey.
I hope my advices and experiences will prove useful to you and that you have a smooth and wonderful journey as a mother!