36 Weeks Pregnant
Learn what's happening in week 36 of pregnancy and find out how your baby is developing.
At 36 weeks, you are entering the ninth and last month of your pregnancy. Your baby which is the size of a canary melon now has excellent chances of survival or around 99%. However, babies born at 36 weeks may have some feeding difficulties and they may require intensive care after birth.
What happens in your body in pregnancy week 36?
By week 36, you should have gained a total of 24 to 35 pounds. You may feel like there's no more room to grow, but your baby continues to grow until your due date arrives. You're probably exhausted from carrying around your big belly and you're feeling a little anxious which is perfectly normal. However, if you find that your anxiety is affecting your daily life, you should mention this to your doctor at your next appointment.
Changes in Your Body at 36 Weeks Pregnant
You will be experiencing many of the same symptoms of pregnancy you've had throughout your third trimester. Some of the most common pregnancy symptoms at 36 weeks include fatigue, heartburn, leg cramps, and frequent urination.
Many expectant mothers also experience breast leakage in the third trimester, which is completely normal. The yellowish fluid known as colostrum is here to give your baby all the nutrients he needs in the first days of his life. If you're finding the breast leakage uncomfortable, put nursing pads inside your bra. They can be found at many major retailers that sell baby products.
Many babies decide to come earlier, so you should watch out for contractions. Contractions are the periodic tightening or cramping in the uterus and they are similar to menstrual cramps. During contractions, your stomach will feel hard or tight to the touch. Some women confuse labor contractions with Braxton-Hicks contractions which are intermittent. This means that they don't have a pattern to them and they don't grow in intensity.
If you're experiencing contractions, it is very important to time them. If you want to track your contractions, simply record the time they begin and how long each contraction lasts. Report any contractions to your doctor so that he can determine what's happening.
If you're experiencing contractions that last for one minute and come regularly more often than every five minutes, you’re considered to be in active labor.
Your Baby at 36 Week of Pregnancy
Your baby is around six pounds and 20 inches long and his/her growth will experience a slowdown this week. In the 36th week, the skull bones are not fused together yet so that baby's head can easily maneuver through the birth canal at delivery. Most of your baby's bones and cartilage are also soft.
Many of your baby's systems are mature and ready for life on the outside. The immune system has matured enough to protect your baby from infections and blood circulation has been perfected. However, the digestive system won't be fully mature until sometime after birth.
Pregnancy Week 36 Tips
You are almost at the finish line, so enjoy these last couple of weeks. Take naps whenever you can, and continue eating healthy meals. Drink lots of fluids to get rid of unhealthy toxins and minimize common symptoms of pregnancy at 36 weeks such as swelling (edema).
Prenatal yoga or a short walk can help banish aches and pains and increase your energy levels at the same time.
Take a good care of your gum and teeth, because a gum infection can induce premature labor.
This is the right time to pick a good pediatrician for your baby and pack a hospital bag.