Pregnancy week number 33, you will notice that your baby weighs about 4.2 pounds and is about 17.2 inches in length. During this week your baby will be putting on the pounds as well as the rest of your pregnancy. This week your amniotic fluid is at the highest level of your pregnancy.
Your baby’s brain in increasing is size dramatically while its skin is changing to a pink tone since the fat begins to accumulate under the skin. This week your uterus is just over 5 inches from your navel. Generally the weight gain is about 28 pounds while some women have gained more at this time.
This is the time during your pregnancy that you will gain weight faster due to the fast growth of your baby. Babies generally gain up to 9 ounces from this week until born. You are most likely getting excited about the upcoming birth. Before you get too excited, check with your doctor if you can pre-register at the hospital to speed up the process when you go into labor.
The last thing on your mind when in labor is all the paperwork needed for admittance so take the time to preregister.You may be experiencing swelling or edema at this point. When you live in warmer climate this is more noticeable. The heat tends to make this situation worse than the cooler weather or climate. It has been reported that resting on your left side will help with the swelling.
Getting a peaceful sleep at night is a must for a pregnant mother. I suggest using a comfortable, cool and only the best pregnancy pillow. It will greatly improve your sleep.
You may also experience numbness, pain, or tingling in your fingers or wrists. It is common for the areas to swell something like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. The two conditions do have similarities since Carpal Tunnel is the bony structure located in the wrist. As the tissues around the wrist swell, the nerve begins to tingle as they are pinched.
If you work in a job that requires typing or computer work, ask your employer for a wrist brace to help reduce the swelling and aching. Take frequent breaks to reduce the pain, aches, and swelling as well. As you get closer to the time of delivery, you may be thinking about the delivery. Your doctor will have information on this issue as well as the birthing classes you might be attending.
The labor phase is very distinctive. Healthcare providers divide labor into three stages or into four phases that include the “early stages” of delivery. Early labor is the first stage when the cervix slowly begins dilating and effacing.
Some women do not realize they are in labor at this point even with regular contractions. Some women assume this phase is only Braxton Hicks or false labor. The phase starts when the contractions are in regular intervals. Most contractions will start every 10 – 15 minutes apart lasting about 30 seconds.
During the early phase, you might notice a “bloody show”, which is the mucous discharge that has blood (a small amount) in it. The purpose of the mucous plug is to seal and protect the cervix during pregnancy against infections and foreign substances. For some women, the loss of the mucous plug is a sign of labor. Although this may not be the fact, since some women have lost the plug weeks prior to delivery. Phase two is active labor. This is when your body prepares to deliver your baby.
The contractions will be harder, more frequent, and last longer. The regular contractions will last at least one minute and occur every five minutes for at least one hour. By phase two, you should be in the hospital or on your way there. Phase three or transition occurs after you have been in labor awhile. This phase has contractions occurring every two or three minutes. The cervix will fully dilate up to 10 centimeters. This is generally the most painful time of labor and delivery.
As the cervix is fully dilated, your baby will descend through the pelvis allowing you to push the joyful bundle out to the world. As the baby’s head is visible, called crowning, the doctor will instruct you how to finish the delivery.Phase four is after the baby is born and uterus is still contracting to remove the placenta from the uterus walls. Mild contractions will push this free from your body and allow you to be ready to see your new baby.