8 Weeks Left

Your baby is the size of a cantaloupe

  • Development: Your baby’s body is fully formed and is rapidly gaining weight. The main focus now is the development and maturing of the lungs.
  • Schedule: You may find that you are experiencing a wide range of emotions. It’s important to be aware of the signs of depression.
DAY 1 • OF WEEK 33

Working while pregnant

Being pregnant can put a huge strain on your body, but it’s important to remember that this isn’t an illness. Unless your doctor has specifically stated that you should be resting, there is no reason why you can’t continue working or going about your usual daily routine. Just be aware that you will get tired quicker and may need to slow down as your pregnancy progresses.

DAY 2 • OF WEEK 33

IMPORTANT: It’s completely normal to experience Braxton Hicks contractions from week 33 onwards. These are training contractions to prepare your body for what is to come. If you feel these, take a moment to see if they become regular or if they stop all together. If you are unsure, contact your doctor.

DAY 3 • OF WEEK 33

Maternity leave

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 states that new mothers are entitled to a minimum of 12 weeks of unpaid maternity leave. However, there are certain stipulations involved with the laws, so it’s best to talk to your employer and seek legal advice if necessary.

DAY 4 • OF WEEK 33

IMPORTANT: As soon as a pregnancy is discovered, you should only take medications that have been prescribed to you by your doctor. This recommendation extends until after delivery, and while breastfeeding your baby. Do not use any medication before talking to your obstetrician.

DAY 5 • OF WEEK 33

How to identify your water breaking

This is something we all see in the movies – the dramatic scene where the pregnant woman’s water breaks and she is rushed off to the hospital. The truth is, you don’t always get a large rush of fluid. In some cases, it might just feel like a slight shift in your pelvis and more discharge than normal.

DAY 6 • OF WEEK 33

Candida during pregnancy

When you are pregnant, your immune system can suffer a bit, making it easier for you to contract yeast infections in the vaginal region. You can spot candida by the characteristic foul-smelling discharge, as well as itching and irritation in the area. It’s important to get treatment prescribed by your doctor as soon as you notice the symptoms.

DAY 7 • OF WEEK 33

IMPORTANT: Around this time, your baby should turn in the womb in preparation for birth. Many women describe feeling lots of activity and then a sudden shift. If your baby doesn’t turn around, there’s no need to panic. In some cases, babies only turn just before you go into labor. It’s also possible for the doctor to give your baby some assistance in turning around.

Key takeaway box
  • 1At week 33, your heartbeat and your voice are the most prominent sounds that your baby can hear.
  • 2Your baby’s hearing is fully formed and it can distinguish between different people’s voices, and may also respond to people it recognizes with a kick.
  • 3If you’re having twins, you could very easily give birth at this stage as they tend to come early.
  • 4Your baby is fully formed now and is gaining weight quite rapidly. You’ll notice that you’re also gaining weight quickly.
  • 5It’s important that you eat healthily now in order to give both you and your baby the nutrients you need, and to ensure that you don’t put on unnecessary weight.
More information about week 33

Your baby is now fully formed with all of the major systems and organs either working properly or finishing off their development. The measurements will be around 43.7cm in length and just under 2kg in weight. However, your baby will be gaining weight quite rapidly now, so the weight could change depending on when you do an ultrasound.

Your baby should also adopt cephalic presentation around about now. This is when the body turns upside down and the head wedges into the bottom of the uterus, ready for birth. Don’t worry if your baby doesn’t turn over now though. In some cases, babies only turn just before you go into labor. Your doctor can also assist with shifting your baby’s position when you are giving birth. Alternatively, they will recommend a cesarean section rather than natural birth if it’s safer for you both.

Baby development

You’ll notice a fair amount of movement happening inside you now. Your baby will be responding to hearing your voice and the voice of the people who are around you a lot. Its hearing is now fully developed so it can also distinguish between different voices so be sure to get your partner to talk to your baby as much as possible. Unfortunately, your baby will also move around a lot even when you are trying to sleep. This can lead to you struggling to sleep in these last few weeks of your pregnancy.

Your baby’s body is now ready for the outside world, it just needs to gain weight. All of its bones are formed and rigid now, except for the skull. There are two parts to the skull and they are loose so that the head can squeeze through the birth canal more easily. These bones will then fuse together as your child grows up.

As your baby gains weight and size, the amount of amniotic fluid surrounding it will decrease. This is a strong sign that you are getting ready for giving birth. If you’re having twins, now is the time to be alert because twins tend to be born before you reach full term.

How mom is feeling

Your baby is gaining weight rapidly, which means that you are doing so too. Now is the time to be quite careful because you aren’t just gaining the same weight that your baby is. Your body is also holding onto extra calories and many women gain extra pounds at this stage of a pregnancy from not eating correctly.

It’s important to note that the amount of weight you put on does not necessarily correlate with the size of your baby. Your doctor will keep an eye on your baby through ultrasounds and ensure that it is growing correctly according to its gestational age.

The most critical thing at this stage is to ensure that you eat properly. Getting the correct nutrients to keep your strength up, and to help your baby grow strong is essential. This will also help to prevent conditions like gestational diabetes and hypertension in you.

You may also need to take additional vitamins and supplements at this stage of your pregnancy. This is because the placenta is starting to harden and may have a grade of two or three by now. This means that it is harder to get nutrients and blood to your baby, but with a little help from supplements, all will be well.

External factors

At this stage of a pregnancy, you’ll probably find that everything is getting more and more difficult to do. Sleeping isn’t easy, you may be experiencing anxiety or depression, your body will be uncomfortable or in pain, and eating bigger meals can be hard. Just take it easy, rest as much as you can and talk to your doctor if you are feeling unsure or concerned about something.


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