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40 weeks pregnant – pregnancy week by week

Pregnancy Week by Week Calendar - 40 weeksYou’re now 40 weeks and you are probably well and truly over this whole pregnancy caper. Don’t worry … you’re nearly there. It won’t be long until you are holding your new baby in your arms!

40 weeks pregnant – development guide

Your body

Usually by this stage, you are well and truly ready for the pregnancy to be in the final stages. Only 5 per cent of babies are born on their due date so it is not uncommon for pregnancies – especially first pregnancies – to run overtime.

Pregnant woman with visible uterus and fetus week 40True labour is punctuated by a number of signs. For some, it is the membranes rupturing (also known as your ‘waters breaking’), while others will experience a ‘show’. This is a small amount of pinkish (slightly blood-stained) mucus that comes from your vagina as your cervix softens for birth. You may also experience the onset of regular contractions.

There is no order to which you will experience first, and no definite to how long it will take your baby to reach the outside world once these wheels have been put in motion. But once this process has begun, you will be very keen to meet your baby.

Your Baby

Your baby is most likely positioned in readiness for the journey through the birth canal and it is now just a matter of waiting for labour to begin.

Weekly development of a human fetus - week 40Your baby is approximately 51 cm in length and weighs approximately 3.5-4kg. Your baby is very keen to meet you too.

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3 things to do now you’re 40 weeks pregnant

Know what to expect in the first days after your baby is born

The newborn stage is delightful, exciting, challenging, and short. It’s important to plan ahead and be prepared so you have time to enjoy it. Those early days will be gone before you know it. Many of the day-to-day postnatal events and changes come as a complete surprise to new parents. So this article contains 5 helpful hints to help you prepare for the first few days after birth.

Read these tips on life with a new baby

Life is going to change and it will help to know these few little tips about newborns and how to deal with those early weeks – it can make the whole experience a little easier. This article from Jo Ryan – 6 tips on surviving the first weeks with baby – is a great read.

Plan a pamper session

Do your future self a favour and book a mum’s pamper session – for a month’s time. You’ll deserve it!

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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