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WEEK 38: GET READY: BABY'S ON THE WAY

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Are you excited, mummy? It's nearly time to meet your precious bundle!


What's happening to your baby?

Your baby's shedding lanugo hair and losing the vernix coating that has protected the skin for nine months. The lungs are producing surfactant, a fluid that prevents the air sacs from sticking together when your baby takes a first breath. The digestive system contains meconium, which will come out as the first poo after birth. Baby currently weighs about 2.7 to 3.3kg and is 45 to 55cm long. If you deliver after 37 weeks, your baby is considered a full term baby. Some babies enjoy their warm home in mummy's tummy too much though and stay longer than their due date.

What's happening to you?

The majority of women go into labour between weeks 38 and 42. Any longer than 42 weeks and you may be advised to get medical assistance to get you into labour. Keep an eye out for pre-labour signs like lower back or abdominal cramps, consistent contractions that increase with intensity and frequency, show, or even diarrhoea. Try to get as much rest as possible now, but don't stay in bed all the time. Walking helps with a smooth labour and delivery. It's a good excuse to go for leisurely strolls and to do some shopping! If you have older children, it's good to spend some time with them before your attention is distracted by a newborn.


By Associate Professor TAN Thiam Chye Head & Senior Consultant, Dr Janice TUNG Senior O&G Resident,
Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, KK Women's and Children's Hospital

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