Pregnancy- Week 40

How your baby is growing:

While you can still do the estimates on your baby’s growth, the better option would be to wait till that baby comes out! The average newborn is seven and one half pounds and twenty inches long. It is amazing when you think about it. Your baby began as a bundle of cells, the size of a period on a sentence and in forty short (You’re laughing at that word choice aren’t you?) weeks it has become the size of a watermelon at least! Your baby’s body is now fifteen percent fat, all of its organs are finished, and it’s ready to rock. The brain continues to grow and the immune system to develop and strengthen, however these continue well past the toddler years even.

As fair warning, you know how in the movies babies always come out all clean and pink, perfect with clear skin and round head? That is only true on the screen. The average newborn comes out covered in blood and some of the remaining waxy white coating it had in the uterus. Its head may be cone shaped from the pressure of your pushes (this will return to normal soon) and it may have all variety of skin ailments from rashes to acne, but it will still be the most beautiful thing you have ever seen on film or off.

Congratulations, for the millionth time.

How your body is changing:

Well, hopefully it’s a lot emptier, as in you’ve gone into labor.

How your life is changing:

If you make it to the end of week forty and you haven’t gone into labor you’ll start having visits with your doctor every few days. He or she will evaluate you each time to determine whether or not you should be induced. Have heart that will unquestionably be determined before week forty-two.

You may also want to know:

In what circumstances a labor is induced?

  • You are two weeks past due. The placenta begins to die if the baby exceeds the due date by too long so most doctors wish to avoid putting the baby at risk.
  • Your water has broken, but your labor has not begun. A rupture amniotic sac opens the baby up for infection so labor is usually induced within twenty-four hours.
  • Amniotic fluid levels have become to low or the placenta shows signs of decreased function. (This is determined through ultrasound.)
  • You’ve previously had a still-birth.
  • You are sick or injured in a way that endangers you or the baby to continue the pregnancy.
  • You are diagnosed with preeclampsia.

What are the ways a doctor will induce you?

  • Using prostaglandins:These are injected into the vagina and cause ripening of the cervix through contractions. They may also cause enough contractions to start your labor. These are usually used if your cervix isn’t ready for labor yet.
    A balloon may also be put into your cervix and filled with water. The pressure will cause the cervix to naturally release prostaglandins for the same effect. This is called a Foley catheter, and don’t worry the balloon falls out once your cervix dilates.
  • Stripping of the membranes:
  • This is done when your labor isn’t necessarily urgent and your cervix has begun to ripen but still has a ways to go. Your doctor will insert a finger into your cervix and strip the amniotic sac from around the opening. This will again cause the release of prostaglandins and labor should begin within a few days. Many women find this process uncomfortable and painful.

  • Rupturing of the membranes:If your cervix is already beginning to open your doctor may insert a hook and break your water. If labor doesn’t begin on its own the next technique will be used.
  • Pitocin:This is a synthetic hormone that induces contractions. It’s given through an IV until labor begins. This doesn’t always work right away. It may take hours to begin working. But it does cause powerful contractions. Pitocin is usually used as a last resort because the intensity of the contractions leads to a higher risk of vaginal tears for the mother.

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This is the exciting part of

This is the exciting part of pregnancy because all of the pain and labor will have a happiness to bring in your entire life.