Your baby now measures about 17.8 inches (45 cm) from head to foot and weighs about 5.7 pounds (2.59 kg) at the start of the week—and around 6 pounds (2.76 kg) at the end of the week.
Your baby is now storing fat ahead of life outside the uterus. Your baby’s movements may change now, resulting in more prodding and poking. You might notice the shape of an elbow or heel —or even a whole foot!— against your belly.
Although your baby has less space, you should feel your baby’s movements several times a day. The nature of these movements may change, but their frequency won’t. A piece of advice: get to know your baby’s movement patterns. Doing so will make it easier for you to detect any changes. Trust your instincts as well! If you feel that something’s not right, contact your health care provider immediately.
You could have trouble sleeping and need to turn over frequently. Are you having powerful, vivid dreams? You are processing a great deal before you give birth and welcome your new baby. Continue to rest frequently. The last few weeks may be heavy and slow.
If this is your first pregnancy, your baby has probably dropped down into your pelvis by now.
Visits to the doctor are more frequent now than at the start of the pregnancy to check that both mother and baby are doing well. It’s also time to discuss your thoughts about the birth with your health care provider. For example, does the mother-to-be prefer to give birth in a certain position and what are your thoughts for pain relief? It’s important that you are involved in these decisions so that you can be your partner’s mouthpiece during the birth. After all, you’re probably the person who knows her best. A good way to start discussing these issues is to write a birth plan together.
And while you’re at it, take the chance to photograph her beautiful, round belly—it will be gone before you know it.