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38 weeks pregnant – pregnancy week by week

Pregnancy Week by Week Calendar - 38 weeksCongratulations – you’re now 38 weeks pregnant! It is time to rest up – you want to be well rested when baby arrives! Make sure you’re organised already so you can take it easy.

38 weeks pregnant – development guide

Your body

It is important to get as much rest as you can. With your baby being a little restricted in movement due to its tight quarters, you may find that your sleep is less disrupted now, so make the most of it. Rest when you can at any time of the day.

Pregnant woman with visible uterus and fetus week 38Your baby will start to engage soon, if it hasn’t already, and you will feel the pressure of your baby’s head on your pelvis. Braxton Hicks contractions will continue.

Your baby

Sized at approximately 49cm head to toe, your baby’s growth is relatively stable, other than some continuation of the gain in general fat stores.

Weekly development of a human fetus - week 38Baby’s weight is a little under 3kg and it is only 17 days (or so …) until you get to meet your precious cargo.

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3 things to do now you’re 38 weeks pregnant

Learn everything you can about baby sleep

Many parents say they wish they’d known more about baby sleep BEFORE their baby was born. So here are a few of the most important things to know. Firstly, newborn babies can’t stay awake for more than an hour or so at a time. Secondly, watch your baby carefully and learn to recognise their tired signs. If they become overtired they’ll be harder to put to sleep. Thirdly, babies will wake through the night for feeds, this will change as they grow but for now this will be your new normal. For more tips see this A-Z of Baby Sleep from Pinky McKay.

Familiarise yourself with the SIDS & Kids Safe Sleeping Guidelines

The rate of SIDS decreased by 80 per cent after the SIDS & Kids Safe Sleeping Campaign was introduced in 1990. The campaign aims to give parents information on how to reduce the risk of SIDS and fatal sleeping accidents. The 6 known ways to reduce the risk are featured in this article How to Put Your Baby to Sleep Safely, which also goes through the steps in setting up your baby’s cot safely.

Learn to deal with sleep deprivation

Sleep deprivation is one of the hardest things to adjust to when you’ve got a new baby. But it is of extreme importance that you look after yourself in these early days (yes, that means sleeping when the baby sleeps!) and take note of some of these tips for coping with sleep deprivation.

This content is meant as a guide only. If you find anything worrying or unsettling, or experience any bleeding or spotting, contact your local GP, obstetrician or an emergency healthcare provider immediately.

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