9 Months Pregnant Symptoms & Fetal Development Guide
Yes! You’re in your last month of pregnancy, and your baby could arrive at any time. Most women give birth between weeks 38 and 42, but very few babies arrive exactly on their due date. Let’s explore the 9 months pregnant symptoms & fetal development guide to know more.
Nine Months Pregnant: Common Symptoms
In the final month of your pregnancy, some of the normal pregnancy symptoms you might experience include:
- Frequent urination
- Mucus plug being expelled
- Increased vaginal discharge
- Itchy skin
- Pelvic pressure
- Lightening’ — your baby drops lower, which makes it easier to breathe
Physical Changes In The Ninth Month
Here are a few physical changes you’ll notice:
- The pregnant belly is more protruded, and you can feel the baby dropped down by this time. Your belly button sticks out.
- Your breasts may leak a bit of colostrum, a yellow fluid that becomes the baby’s first food.
- The nipple and the areola become darker.
- The expanding uterus leads to tearing of the skin tissues, creating stretch marks.
- Due to the hormonal changes, your hair becomes beautiful and fuller.
- Linea nigra, the dark line that runs from the belly button and the pubic hairline, becomes darker due to skin pigmentation.
You will also experience emotional ups and downs due to the continuing hormonal changes.
Emotional Changes That You Experience This Month
Here are some emotional changes:
- Mood swings, stress and anxiety
- Absent-mindedness and forgetfulness
- Nesting instincts start to surface as you get ready for the arrival of the baby.
The baby is fully developed by now but continues to grow and change every day until delivery.
Baby Development In The Ninth Month Of Pregnancy
The ninth month of pregnancy is from weeks 33 to 36. By this time, your baby grows from the size of pineapple to as big as the head of romaine lettuce.
Baby weight: 4.2 – 5.8lb (1.918 – 2.622kg)
Baby’s CRL (crown-rump length): 17.2 – 18.7in (43.7 – 47.4cm)
Baby’s Position And Movements In The Ninth Month
Position: The baby remains in the head-down position with the head properly fit into the pelvis. It is the ideal position and makes the movement of the baby through the birthing canal easier. Even if the baby attains a breech presentation (bottom-down position) now, there is still a chance to attain the ideal position before delivery.
Movements: With the baby fully grown, there is little space for it to move inside the uterus. The movements are restricted, except for a few arm and leg movements. You may feel the baby’s kicks under your ribs as the baby is now in the head down position.
Follow a healthy diet as you did before, and do not miss taking the supplements.
What To Expect During Your Visit To The Ob/Gyn?
The doctor will carry out some examinations such as:
- Blood pressure check
- Weight check
- Measuring the fundal height
- Monitoring the fetal heartbeat and the position
- Checking for the cervix ripening or dilation
- The doctor will recommend the Group B streptococcus test. The vaginal or rectal swab will be tested to check for any infection. In the case of a positive test result, antibiotics will be prescribed. If the labor starts before the completion of the test, then antibiotics will be administered intravenously during the labor.
Since you are closer to the due date now, pay extra attention to any unusual symptoms during this month and contact the doctor in case of any discomfort.
The risk of preterm labor cannot be overlooked this month. Seek immediate medical help.
Five or more contractions in an hour or one in every 10 minutes
- Menstrual-like cramps
- Vaginal fluid leak
- Vaginal bleeding (pink or bloody)
- Increased vaginal discharge
- Cramps in the abdomen, with or without diarrhea
- Pelvic pressure
- Ache in the lower back
Precautions To Be Taken In The Ninth Month
- Avoid standing for a long time.
- Avoid sitting and standing up suddenly as it can lead to a drop in your blood pressure, causing dizziness.
- Count the number of times the baby kicks. If you do not feel the kicks as often as you do, then eat something sweet because sugar rush makes the baby move..
- Keep stress at bay.
- Avoid smoking, and drinking alcohol.
- Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated.
- Give enough rest to your body.
- Take a warm bath to relieve the back pain and leg cramps.
- Do not lie on your back.
- Maintain oral hygiene.
- Have a smaller meal at regular intervals.
- Do not lift heavy objects.
- Try walking and Kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic muscles and to boost your energy levels.
- Avoid taking any medicine without the doctors’ advice.
- Wear comfortable, flat footwear and loose, breathable clothes.
- Avoid cleaning cat litter as it can cause toxoplasmosis.
Whether you’re counting down the days until you get to meet your little one or wishing you could freeze time, you will soon be a new mom officially. In other words, you won’t be pregnant forever, promise.
Try to use this time to finish up any last-minute prep you need to do, keep a close eye out for any signs of labor, and be sure to sneak in some self-care before the big day. Foot massage, anyone?