40 weeks pregnant is a milestone to celebrate and savor. Find out what to expect when you’re 40 weeks pregnant, find out whether you can feel baby yet and what your uterus looks like. What size is a 12-week-pregnant uterus? What are the 8th week symptoms? When does baby start to move?
Your baby at week 40 of pregnancy
Your child is now fully developed and eager to meet you. His biological systems are all developed and equipped to survive outside the womb as he gets closer to giving birth. Once he leaves his comfortable nest, his fat cells, which are still forming, will give him the insulation he needs. Additionally, the extra weight will give him cheeks that are just too plump to resist!
40 weeks pregnant is how many months?
When you are 40 weeks pregnant, you are officially in 9 months of your pregnancy….However, there are four weeks in a month, therefore 40 weeks would be equivalent to 10 months. Right? Not quite.
Four weeks is equal to 28 days, but as each month has 30 or 31 days (with the obvious exception of February), each month is roughly 4.3 weeks long.
How big is your baby at 40 weeks pregnant?
Your kid will be the length and weight it will be when you push it out into the world when you’ve completed the whole nine months. The infant measures between 19 and 21 inches, or around half a meter, in length.
About 6.75 to 10 pounds, or 3 to 4 and a half kilograms, make up the fetal weight. This indicates that your child is roughly the same size as it was the previous week and resembles a small watermelon.
40 weeks pregnant baby position
Most likely, your baby’s head has lowered into your pelvis, and his body is tightly curled. There isn’t much he can do because it’s so jammed in.
40 weeks pregnant: baby’s development
39-42 weeks baby developments
As the baby develops in the womb, it becomes quite active. During the last month before birth, the fetus drinks between half a liter and a liter of amniotic fluid every day.
It takes about a month after birth for a baby’s tear ducts to open. That means that infants cry without tears for the first month of their lives. It is estimated that the fetal heart pumps 2,000 quarts of blood per day during birth! Compared to an adult heart, which pumps about 6,000 quarts of blood daily.
Newborns have limited vision. Until the cones in her retina finish developing, they will have a vision of about 20/640, and she will not be able to perceive the colors. A newborn can identify his mother’s milk simply by its smell. Despite the fact that he cannot see her face, they can recognize theit mother by her smell, her voice, or a silent video.
It is unclear exactly how labor begins, but research suggests that the fetus sends hormonal signals to the mother’s uterus. It takes powerful contractions to push the baby out of the womb. The soft plates in his skull squeeze together and overlap to allow his large head to move through the birth canal.
Does baby grow much after 40 weeks?
Your body and your baby at 40 weeks pregnant
We’d love to hear about your unique birth experience, so please send it our way! It’s a wonderful opportunity to spread the word about your miracle and help future expectant mothers.
You may have more regular cycles of Braxton Hicks contractions, in which your abdomen tightens and releases, as your body gears itself for delivery. Additionally, you’ll go through periods of stronger contractions that could or might not become routine. Your doctor will inform you at your appointment if your cervix is thinned and opening in preparation for childbirth.
Bringing Home Baby
This week is when you should deliver your child. However, bear in mind that it’s unlikely that this will be the week you give birth. Only 5% of babies are delivered on the day they were due, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). Instead of being born on her exact due day, your baby is more likely to arrive between 38 and 42 weeks. Keep trying! Soon enough, the baby will arrive.
You’ll stay in the hospital for at least one or two nights after giving birth, depending on whether you had a vaginal birth or a Cesarean section, before taking your baby home. There are a few things you should do to get ready for your kid to come home, and keep in mind that while you’re healing from the birth, you deserve some time to be the parent.
Before you can bring your baby home from the hospital, there are a few things you should do.
Bring a car seat
If you don’t have a car seat placed correctly, you won’t be able to drive your newborn home from the hospital. When it comes to purchasing car seats, there are many different designs, pricing points, and style options available. Your kid will spend a lot of time in that seat, so choose one that you are comfortable in.
Add your baby’s name to your health insurance
Your health insurance provider will probably give you a few days to add your kid’s name, but before you’re too worn out from nighttime feedings and diaper changes, get in touch with your insurance provider to add your baby to your coverage.
Schedule your baby’s first in-office, pediatrician visit
Soon after she is delivered, your baby will need to start seeing a pediatrician. In reality, it’s possible that the pediatrician visited you and your child in the hospital. One or two weeks following birth, depending on the pediatrician, an appointment will need to be set up.
Purchase newborn basics
Stock up on baby necessities like diapers, onesies, blankets, wipes, and burp cloths for your home. To carry these goods to the hospital with you, pack a compact baby bag. The best way to disinfect the area around your baby’s umbilical cord according to pediatricians varies (some recommend cotton-tipped applicators and rubbing alcohol, and some recommend mild soap and water).
Consult with a lactation specialist
If you intend to breastfeed, schedule a consultation with a lactation consultant before you leave the hospital (typically one is on duty there). She can assist you with any breastfeeding problems that may arise and can help you locate successful feeding positions for your child.
Understand your healthcare provider’s instructions
Depending on your delivery, your provider will provide you with instructions on how to care for your body after delivery. When you give birth vaginally, you’ll most likely be given medication and pads to keep your vaginal area clean and free of infection. Having a C-section will result in a longer hospital stay than giving birth vaginally. The incision along your abdomen will be very sore.
To soothe the pain, your doctor may prescribe different medications. In addition, you may have to nurse your baby lying down on your side instead of sitting up. You and your provider will also discuss which activities you may safely perform now and when you may resume more strenuous activities.
Dr. Joanne Motino Bailey PhD, a certified nurse midwife, tells her patients recovering from childbirth, “If something hurts, stop doing it.” Pay attention to your body.
Enlist friends’ help
Take time to recover. Allow friends to help you with meals, cleaning, and anything else you need. You should also sleep as much as possible for a faster recovery. “The rule of thumb is that whenever your baby sleeps, you should sleep too,” says Dr. Bailey.
For the first few weeks after you bring your newborn home, let the chores slip and prepare straightforward meals. Your task is to recover from 40 arduous weeks of discomforts and wonders that have made you a proud mother.
Having Trouble Sleeping at 40 weeks Pregnant
Having difficulties sleeping is a common pregnant symptom, and it’s especially common in the second and third trimesters, when other pregnancy symptoms peak and a growing belly makes it difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position.
When you’re 40 weeks pregnant, it could hurt to sleep on your stomach, but studies indicates that lying on your back puts more strain on the vena cava, the main blood vessel that returns blood to the heart.
Your blood circulation will increase if you sleep on your left side, which will also be good for your uterus, kidneys, and fetus. If you’re having trouble falling asleep, try placing a pillow between your knees and another under your stomach. If the problem persists, consult your doctor.
40 weeks pregnancy symptoms
Your body undergoes many changes to give your baby-to-be enough room to grow. Some of these changes are comforting—your rounded belly and your full breasts, for example—while other signs can be troubling. Keep in mind that many of these physical changes will last only until your baby arrives.
Upper abdominal pain
The uterus is growing rapidly, putting pressure on organs like the bladder, intestines, and stomach. This can cause mild pain in the upper abdomen that may extend to the lower abdomen or sides of your stomach. The pressure on your abdomen can also cause pain when you cough or sneeze.
Lower abdominal pain
The uterus is growing rapidly and putting pressure on your bladder, intestines, and stomach. This can cause lower abdominal pain that may feel like mild cramping or a dull ache in the pelvic region. Back pain. The growing weight of your uterus on your spine can cause back pain that typically becomes worse as pregnancy progresses.
The weight of your uterus can put pressure on your veins and cause leg cramps or swelling. You may also experience varicose veins in your legs due to increased blood flow. Neck pain. As the baby grows, it puts more pressure on the spinal cord, which runs down through your neck and back. This can cause mild pain in the neck area that may extend into your shoulders and arms.
Your growing uterus can put pressure on your spine and cause back pain. The weight of the baby can also cause sciatica, which is when pain shoots down the back of one leg due to compression in the spinal cord. Backache. Your growing uterus may cause you to experience mild to moderate lower back pain or stiffness in your lower abdomen around this time.
It can be alarming, especially if you aren’t expecting it! But rest assured, this is not usually a cause for concern. Breast milk production begins when the hormone prolactin rises in response to pregnancy. Prolactin stimulates the cells of the mammary glands that produce milk and causes them to grow and multiply.
You may find it harder to get comfortable when you’re pregnant. Your growing abdomen can make it more difficult for you to find a position that feels good, and your joints may be sore from carrying extra weight. You might also experience restless leg syndrome, which is when you feel like your legs are moving even though they aren’t. This happens because the joints in the body release chemicals that cause itching or tingling sensations when they are irritated by things like pregnancy hormones.
You may be experiencing swollen ankles, which is common during pregnancy. This happens because the increased levels of hormones in your body cause fluid to accumulate in your tissues, including those that line the walls of your veins and arteries. It’s usually not a cause for concern unless you have swelling in both legs or it lasts longer than two weeks.
Fatigue (constant tiredness or weakness)
One of the most typical symptoms of early pregnancy is fatigue, which frequently starts at this point. Although there are many causes of exhaustion during pregnancy (including changes in hormone levels), some research indicates that inadequate sleep brought on by nighttime awakenings from unpleasant sleeping positions may also be a role.
Heartburn or gas
There may be a rise in heartburn and flatulence during the 40th week of pregnancy. This is because progesterone produces a decrease in the tone of the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) muscle, which typically prevents stomach acid from entering the esophagus. This can cause heartburn and discomfort by allowing stomach acid to flow back up into the esophagus. Try spreading your meals out more, staying away from items that are known to cause heartburn (such spicy foods), and drinking lots of water.
Mood swings and crying spells
The 40th week of pregnancy is a vulnerable time for women, when they are more likely to experience mood swings and crying spells. Until your hormone levels settle, this will have an impact on your mental and emotional well-being. This is a common occurrence for pregnant women; one study indicated that 75% of women felt emotional shifts like irritability or depression in the first trimester.
Indigestion, or constipation
During the 40th week of pregnancy, you may suffer gastrointestinal issues like indigestion or constipation. Pregnancy hormones like progesterone and estrogen might increase the likelihood of gastrointestinal issues including indigestion. These hormones slow down digestion by relaxing the digestive tract, preventing food from being swallowed whole. You can reduce the frequency and severity of indigestion during pregnancy by cutting out on high-fat and sugary foods and eating more often, smaller meals (like sweets or fried foods).
Your body retains water to provide the necessary fluids for your growing baby-to-be. You can prevent much of this swelling from drinking plenty of fluids and keeping your legs up. You may also want to purchase socks designed to improve the circulation in your feet.
Shortness of breath
Shortness of breath, also known as dyspnea, is a very common and often overlooked symptom of pregnancy. It happens when there isn’t enough oxygen in your body or when your blood flow is constricted. This can make it difficult to do even the smallest things like walk across the room or climb stairs.
You may feel like you need to take deeper breaths than usual or that it takes longer than normal for your breathing rate to return to normal after an activity such as climbing stairs.
Symptoms to be aware of
Please share any concerns you may have with your doctor or midwife. Don’t worry about whether or not you’re repeating yourself or wasting anyone’s time by bringing up an old topic. This pregnancy is yours, so listen to your body if you suspect something is wrong.
Cholestasis of Pregnancy
Cholestasis of pregnancy is a liver problem. It slows or stops the normal flow of bile from the gallbladder. This causes itching and yellowing of your skin, eyes, and mucous membranes (jaundice). Cholestasis sometimes starts in early pregnancy. But it is more common in the second and third trimesters. It most often goes away within a few days after delivery. The high levels of bile may cause serious problems for your developing baby (fetus).
40 weeks pregnant belly
At 40 weeks pregnant, you may notice that your tummy appears to have “dropped,” or sagged down towards your pelvis. The shifting location of the fetus inside the uterus is responsible for this new form.
40 weeks pregnant belly size
By week 40, your belly will have expanded and protruded considerably. You might have trouble seeing where you’re walking. There is a 26-35 cm range for fundal height (10.2-13.8 in). Around 9 cm (3.5 inches) above your belly button is where you’ll notice a significant increase in amniotic fluid.
Some women may measure smaller and some larger than this, but this is a good general guide for how big your belly will be at this point in pregnancy. Of course, being 40 weeks pregnant with twins makes you feel heavier than other pregnant women your age.
Measuring pregnant belly at 40 weeks
If you’re measuring your belly at home, use a tape measure and measure around the widest part of your abdomen. Measurement is usually taken above the navel or below it, depending on what’s more comfortable for you. Be sure to stand up straight and relax as much as possible while taking your measurement—it should be taken at the same time every day so that you can monitor how quickly or slowly your belly is growing.
If you are measuring your belly at the top of your pubic bone, expect to see an increase of about two inches per month. If you’re measuring this lower, around your navel and below, it can be as much as three inches per month. The average weight gain during pregnancy is between 25 and 35 pounds and usually occurs in the last trimester (after week 28).
Braxton Hicks at 40 weeks Pregnant
Right now, you’re probably experiencing a lot of practice contractions, which shouldn’t hurt. They are contractions caused by Braxton Hicks. You’ll be fully aware of it once you begin experiencing labor pains. When your bump contracts in a real way, it hurts. When the muscles relax, the ache goes gone.
40 weeks pregnant ultrasound
The belly circumference is one of the most crucial measurements the sonographer can take in order to estimate your baby’s weight for your healthcare practitioner. A cross section of your baby’s tummy is shown in this picture. Her stomach is represented by the small rear oval, and the blood artery carrying nourishment from the placenta is shown by the curving black line. You’ll soon be able to feed her very differently!
40 weeks pregnant hCG levels
At 40 weeks pregnant, your hCG levels can range from about 4,060 – 165,400 mIU/m.
Explore more in your pregnancy week-by-week
Follow your pregnancy week-by-week to find out how your baby is growing and what is happening to your body.
First Trimester Weeks:
Second Trimester Weeks
Third Trimester Weeks
Pregnant Women Also Asked:
Got questions about week 6? Other ladies have wondered this…
- How pregnancy happens. (n.d.)
- Human chorionic gonadotropin hormone (HCG). (2018.)
- Knowing if you are pregnant. (2019).
- Navigating your pregnancy. (n.d.).
- Pregnancy. (2017).
- Pregnancy: Sensitivity and specificity. (n. d.).
- Pregnancy tests. (n.d.)
- Pregnancy week by week. Weeks 1–2. (n.d.).
- Stages of pregnancy. (n.d.).