Be Ready: 31 Weeks of Pregnancy

Pregnancy and parenthood is an important phase in people’s lives. All would-be parents especially mothers must be aware of the changes that their bodies are likely to go through so that they can avoid complications and be prepared well in advance. When a woman is 31 weeks pregnant the uterus is preparing for the baby’s birth. That is, the countdown begins.

You are 31 weeks pregnant which means you are in your third trimester of pregnancy. Major maternal and fetal changes happen during this period. This is the most important period as you and the baby are preparing for the final stage- birth. You can start thinking of names, collect clothes, decorate your baby’s nursery etc. The tummy becomes more rounded as the time nears.

Baby’s Growth

The physical formation of the baby is complete. He or she measures about 10 inches in length and weighs 2 pounds. The baby gains weight and stops growing lengthwise in the third trimester. It puts on fat and keeps developing the lungs. The position of the baby in the uterus in upright with the baby facing the mother’s back. The head is close to the diaphragms of the mother. As the baby moves, the mother can sometimes see the form of elbow or foot pushing the walls of her abdomen. The growth of the baby is so rapid that the uterus becomes congested. The amniotic fluid acts as a cushion for the baby while in the uterus. In case of a baby boy, the testes descend from the abdomen into the scrotum when you are 31 weeks pregnant.

The brains are developing rapidly and the five senses are fully functional. The nerve cells and their individual connections are also rapidly developing. The baby will start smelling as soon as he or she comes out of the uterus. In other words, yours will be the first scent that the baby will get and it will soon become the favourite scent. In some cases, the babies are sucking their thumbs while in the uterus.

Mother’s growth

Mother will notice significant changes in her body. Apart from the increase in size (which maybe depressing for some) her mobility is also getting affected. Her centre of gravity has shifted owing to the huge bump in the front. Therefore, mothers find it difficult to balance themselves while walking or simply standing when they are 31 weeks pregnant. The size of the uterus is ten times that of what it was originally. The volume has increased by five hundred times. Sleeping is difficult. They cannot lie flat on the back as this produces strain on the spine and increases backache. Finding a comfortable sleeping position is very difficult. ‘Pregnancy waddle’ develops in this stage. Women move around in a side to side motion so as to balance themselves.

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