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36 Weeks Pregnant

Updated on August 21, 2011

36 weeks pregnant and almost there. You are now at the stage where you're classed as being 'full term pregnant'. If your baby was born now, he'd have a great chance of surviving unaided, outside of your womb.

Although it may not feel like it, there are still a few developments underway, between your baby and your body, in readiness for his birth - sometime during the next few weeks. It's also a time when many women start feeling as though they're nothing but tired and uncomfortable.

That's perfectly natural and considering the size of a 36 weeks pregnant belly - there's no wonder your back is feeling the strain, not to mention your joints and in many ways ... your spirit!

At 36 weeks pregnant - if you're wondering what to expect - you've got maybe four or five weeks to go and you're probably feeling pretty crappy! Let’s be honest – with the extra weight and a baby that feels as though he’s about to burst out any moment – you’ll not be feeling as though you’ve a spring in your step.

I know the last few weeks can be tough and I remember pretty much how I felt with all of my pregnancies - and apart from feeling like cleaning the house from top to bottom, I was plain fed up by this stage.

36 Weeks Picture

It’s likely that your joints are aching because your pelvic area has softened in preparation for the birth of your baby, plus you will be carry so high now that getting up from a laying or seated position feels like a lot of effort.

If you sit straight up your ribs sit on your womb (and baby) and it’s pretty uncomfortable. You may be experiencing a new bout with heartburn because of the size of your baby, coupled with the fact that his movements can unsettle the acids in your stomach.

If you’re having more and more Braxton Hicks – be sure to pay a little attention. For the main, they will simply be Braxton Hicks but there’s always the off chance that they’re not. At 36 weeks pregnant, it’s unlikely that you’ll go into labor early but it’s not unheard of either. I actually went into labor at 32 weeks pregnant with one of mine and I honestly thought it was practice contractions.

After a trip to the hospital and an overnight stay, I was fine and went onto to deliver, no problems, at 39 weeks. If you bear in mind the signs of labor and all appears well, you’ll no doubt be fine. Another thing to make sure of is that you continue to rest as and when you can. If you haven’t already done so, consider investing in a good quality maternity pillow and try to put your feet up regularly.

Hopefully, in the next few weeks your baby will ‘drop’ into your cervix and you should feel a measure of relief. You’ll be able to breath easier due to a lack of pressure on your lungs and upper rib cage though the down side is feeling as though you have a lot of pressure in and around your vaginal canal. It can certainly make walking a little more difficult but the upside is – you’ve not many more weeks of being pregnant to go!


Fetal Development

36 Weeks Gestation

At 36 weeks gestation, your baby is around 13 to 15 inches in length and may well weigh around six pounds. By the time you've reached your 37th week pf pregnancy your baby will be considered the same as a baby born at 40 weeks - a full term baby. His brain will continue to develop at a rapid rate and he'll spend some of his time swallowing then excreting amniotic fluid.

He will be able to suck, blink and move his limbs with some considerable force. He will have lost almost all of the waxy vernix that protects his skin whilst he's in the - and the same will be happening to the downy hair that covered his body prior to his developing enough fat to keep him warm.

36 Weeks Pregnant - In General


Although it will feel as though being 36 weeks pregnant is like walking uphill with glue stuck to the soles of your shoes - it really will be all over in a few more weeks. You will no doubt be feeling more anxious about the impending labor and delivery process but as long as you remember that you will have experts in attendance, have a partner, loved one or friend with you every step of the way - you will be fine.

Try to relax, lose some of the anxiety and think positive - as heavy and cumbersome, anxious or lacking sleep as you may be right now - the best bit really is giving birth and meeting your new baby for the first time. Almost there!


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