As the days approach the mothers have mixed feelings of positivism and apprehensiveness. By pregnancy week 34 the weight of the baby is 5 pounds and is 20 inches long. Some babies weigh larger and some smaller. It is difficult to find the exact weight of the baby as it is including the placenta and amniotic fluid. The baby continues to lay down fat which is 15 percent of the baby’s total weight. The baby’s lungs are almost mature now and the brain and nervous system are fully developed. The baby’s taste buds are also fully developed. The hair on the baby’s head become thicker and the skin is soft and smooth and looks less wrinkled. The toenails are developed and the fingernails reach the tips of the fingers. The baby’s adrenal glands are also developed.
The placenta is matured and continues to supply oxygen and nutrition to the baby until it is born. The uterus measures 5 inches above the belly button. Most women start feeling uncomfortable by this week.
Fatigue is the most common complain of women during pregnancy week 34. Fatigue arises due to aches and pains, gain in weight, anxiety about labor and delivery. In the final weeks of pregnancy women should take lot of rest and frequent naps. This week more swelling could be seen in ankles, fingers and face. In this condition women should continue to drink lot of fluids and should rest with feet elevated. Other symptoms during this week include Braxton Hicks, pelvic aches in the back and a sore rib cage.
Women should eat diet which has enough of calcium daily as the baby will take the calcium from the mother to make his bones harder and strong. Apart from this women should take care while in a sitting position. They should keep their spines supported with cushions while sitting, getting up and moving around regularly, not crossing legs while sitting and keeping the feet elevated. Most women during pregnancy week 34 also worry about their baby fitting through the birth canal at this time. Even the healthcare provider will not be able to determine at this point of time. The diagnosis is done at the time of labor when the doctor will be able to determine how the baby fits into the pelvis.
Braxton Hicks are contractions and are painless and nonrhythmical felt during pregnancy week 34. These contractions are felt at irregular intervals. They are not positive signs of true labor. False labor contractions are quite painful and occur before the beginning of true labor. False labor contractions are irregular and short-lived and seen in late pregnancy. The discomfort might be felt in the groin, abdomen and the lower back. This does not pose any danger to the baby.
Omega 3 fatty acids are important for the baby’s visual and neurological developments at pregnancy week 34. The best sources of these fatty acids are coldwater fish, flax seed, and olive and canola oils.