Week by Week Pregnancy Guide: 38 Weeks
The moment you are 38 weeks pregnant, for the fact that your pregnancy is full-term now, any moment from now, you are likely to deliver. This is why you need to watch out for the signs of labour.
At the moment, one of the things that would have happened to your baby is that most of those soft and fine layer of hair as well as the waxy coating that are protecting his skin from the amniotic fluid called lanugo and vernix respectively would have gone. But that does not mean there won’t be some vernix left on some parts of his body like the neck, forehead and the shoulders.
Then, as your baby drops, you are likely to have different symptoms like swollen ankles, the urge to urinate more than ever, and back pain. These are just to keep you alert that your baby would be arriving very soon. Your baby’s growth rate is slowing down, but that does not stop him from accumulating some more fat. This, especially, will happen around his shoulders, elbows and the knees.
More so, the color of his eyes will likely still be changing even till now. This is because there is no pigment (the substance that will make his eyes a specific color) yet. And bear in mind that even while he is born with a color of eyes, chances are that it will still change after birth.
At the moment, the lungs of your baby are still not functioning yet as they are still maturing and also producing the substance that hinders air sacs from sticking to each other inside the lungs called surfactant. Also, for now, he is still trying to fine-tune his brain and nervous system so as to be able to cope with every stimulation once he gets into the world.
At your 38 weeks pregnant, your baby has developed to the length of a stalk of rhubarb. His weight is around 6.80 pounds while his length is about 19.61 inches.
You probably will experience some swelling in your legs or hands as the expected day draws near. This is because your body will produce more fluid than expected and also retain them. In this case, don’t stop drinking water so that the excess fluid can be flushed out. Ensure you rest well and while doing so, let your feet be up. Make sure that whatever clothes or shoes you wear, they are loose so as to give you some comfort.
Your breasts may get to leak as it is producing colostrum (that nutritious milk that your baby will take in the first few days) so that you notice some yellowish spots or wetness in your bra, don’t panic as it is normal. Just get a breast pad that can help you absorb them.
Moreover, if you experience some challenges in sleeping, simply look for a magazine or book to read and in the process, you will find yourself in your dreamland.
So, for now, take time to rest and feed well. And then, get some information on how to know or the signs you will notice when you are in labour.