When you are 31 weeks pregnant, you can be sure that both you and your baby are gaining weight rapidly. The lungs and digestive tract are almost mature now, and the baby will be able to close and open his eyes. His feeding necessities are particularly high now, and your body continues to grow now. Your skin will start to “glow” while you`ll begin enjoying your last weeks of pregnancy. Although now you have gained pretty much weight, if you`ll follow your proper diet you`ll lose the additional weight rather fast, especially if you`ll breastfeed your baby. Also, now is the right time to start buying loose and comfortable clothing, specific to the maternity period.
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Your Baby`s Development
The baby grows very fast now continuing to deposit layers of fat under the skin and gain weight. Also, now is the week when the baby`s lungs become capable to function independently, increasing their volume correctly on their own. Now the lungs will start to produce surfactants for them not to give up when the delivery will take place. The ears are also developed both outside and inside, and the baby can now hear both your voice and of the people around you.
The color of the baby`s skin is somehow pink and not red. Also, his nails have developed, reason for which he may scratch himself accidently while being in the womb. During this period, the baby`s bones are developing significantly, becoming quite strengthen. That`s why the little one will need more calcium.
The baby is producing about half a liter of urine per day, and he also swallow a specific quantity of amniotic liquid, which is recycled a few times per day. The amniotic liquid needs to be measured as a preventive measure. If it`s too much liquid in the amniotic sac, the baby won`t swallow correctly or he has a gastrointestinal problem. If it`s too little, then it means the little one doesn`t urinate enough or he has a kidney problem.
31 Weeks Pregnant: The Mother`s Body
In the last few weeks of pregnancy a lot of women start to experiment the Braxton Kicks contractions, which might start even during the second trimester, although they are more frequent during the third one. The uterus`s muscles contract for around 30 – 60 seconds up to 2 minutes. The Braxton Hicks contractions are also known as the “training contractions” because they`ll prepare the mother for the real labor and allow to practice the breathing exercises that you learned during prenatal courses.
An increased blood circulation may cause fine veins which will appear as a spider web under the skin. They have a length of a few millimeters or centimeters, and are arranged in a fan shape. They rarely bother, as they are more of an aesthetic inconvenience. Also, they mostly appear on the legs as distended veins, mostly known as varicose veins. Another possibility represents the veins of the rectum – hemorrhoids.
If you have painful varicose veins, keep your legs lifted and wear special shocks. To prevent hemorrhoids, try to avoid constipation by consuming foods rich in fibers and hydrating yourself properly.
Advices for an Easier Pregnancy
Until the end of your pregnancy, you`ll gain between 11kg and 16kg! This weight gain is mostly because of the weight of the body, but also because of the placenta, amniotic liquid, the increase of the breasts and uterus, additional fat deposits and the increase of blood and fluid volume. During the last 3 months of pregnancy is normal to gain around 450g per week. Your baby`s needs for nutritional substances is that much greater during this last period of important development before delivery.
Still, because the appetite grows, you might be tempted to eat a lot of cookies, sweets or fast-food. Try to eat this type of food only from time to time, so it won`t become a habit. It`s very important to eat healthy during this period of pregnancy for both you and your baby. Try to eat foods rich in iron, which will help in forming the red cells of the blood. The baby will take the iron from your body`s deposits, so he won`t suffer in anyway, but you could make anemia. Good sources of iron can be found in lean meat, green vegetables and fortified cereals with iron.
A Good Moment to Buy a Car Seat
Maybe this would be a good time to buy the first car seat for your baby, because you`ll need it when you are going to give birth at the hospital and you`ll have to bring your child home with your personal car or taxi. A car seat is one of the equipments that you`ll need to buy before giving birth, no matter if you own a car or not. No matter if when bringing your baby home from the hospital will be the only trip that he`ll make with the car, it`s worth borrowing a car seat from one of your friends or relatives. Keep in mind to only use a car seat that is in a good condition.
Choosing the right car seat is made depending on the age and weight of the baby. Also, you need to be sure you know how to assemble it properly. If the car seat doesn`t fit correctly on the back seat of your car or if it may seem difficult to assemble it, don`t buy it. Some car seats fit better than other ones, so test it first before buying it. The car seat needs to be held tightly by the seat belt, which doesn`t have to allow lateral movement. Practice installing the car seat and tightening the seat belt. If the car seat moves, it`s not safe.
It`s Safe to Travel by Plane during the Last Trimester?
Although it might be perfectly safe to travel by plan during your last trimester of pregnancy (until the week 36), be sure that you discussed about your travel plans with your obstetrician first. In a pregnancy with a high risk, the doctor will recommend to stay as closer of home as possible during the entire pregnancy.
Advices for the Father
To have a child in the house can be an event that will produce a certain degree of anxiety. Still, to reduce such a condition, ensure that you and your life partner are ready to intervene in situations of emergency. You should take a first aid course as well as newborn life support course.