Congratulations! When you are 31 weeks pregnant, your baby becomes approximately the size of a coconut and is now about 16.2 inches long! Exciting right?
With only nine weeks remaining before the due date, you have many things to expect at this time. Your baby’s brain cells are rapidly developing, and he or she has already started receiving signals from the five senses.
This article aims to prepare new moms for the last trimester of their pregnancy. Check out what to pack and how to start preparing for your trip!
Looking at the Mother’s Body at 31 Weeks
Moisturizing Your Skin
Depending on the division of months, you may be in the seventh or eighth month of your pregnancy. This is almost the middle of your third trimester, where you might be experiencing some changes relating to pregnancy in your breasts. These changes appear in the form of reddish streaks, which are also known as stretch marks, and it is only possible to bid them goodbye after child-birth. At this time, your skin is starting to stretch over your breast, causing an itchy sensation. Apply moisturizer regularly to get rid of this skin irritation.
Getting a Maternity Bra
If you haven’t already, this is the right time to get a maternity bra that offers more coverage in the cup area with wider straps and extra hooks at the back. This gives you the flexibility to size up the bra as and when required. You can even use them after your child’s birth as they can be sized down with equal ease.
In the later stages of your third trimester, it is normal to experience a leak of thick and yellowish liquid from your breasts. This liquid is called colostrum. Not every woman experiences this fluid leakage, but the ones who do must use a nursing pad or gauze pad in their bra for absorbing it. This colostrum is useful for nourishing your baby’s body with antibodies and proteins if you choose to breastfeed your child.
What to Expect When You Are 31 Weeks Pregnant?
Discomfort: The movements of your baby become very rapid during this stage. It can feel very uncomfortable to feel your child’s kicks and jabs during different times of the day. Many doctors ask the mother to count the number of times their baby kicked in a day.
Hand ache: At this stage, you must experience carpal tunnel syndrome because of the tissue swelling in your hands. These tissues press on the nerves to cause numbness or tingling sensations in your hands. To help this, you can use a wrist splint while deciding to rest your aching hand for the entire day.
Exertion: In the third trimester, it is expected for the mother to feel tired as it becomes difficult to get a proper good night’s sleep at this time. Whenever possible, try taking short naps during the day. You must also exercise frequently and streamline your eating habits to get some extra energy to battle exertion.
Prepping Up for Your 31st-Week Pregnancy
As discussed in the previous section, it might seem difficult to get a good night’s sleep when you are 31 weeks pregnant. As your belly has grown in size, finding a sleeping position could be a challenging task. According to the expert recommendation, you must try sleeping on one side with both or one knee bent. Additionally, you could use long sized pregnancy pillows to add extra comfort to the bed.
This is the right time to decide your option – formula or breastfeed. You can talk to a lactation consultant or your doctor to seek solutions to the questions on your mind. In the end, if you choose to breastfeed, it is advisable to take classes on lactation. There you will learn about equipment like bottles and breast pumps.
As your belly has grown, the question of sexual intercourse at this time might have popped in your mind. If you’re experiencing no complications in your pregnancy and as a couple, you feel comfortable with it; there is no harm in having sex. It might take some time to find a suitable position, but you can consult your doctor for a better solution.
Checklist Before Your Hospital Trip
Choose your personal support person for the time of child-birth, when you are 31 weeks pregnant. It could either be someone from your close group of family and friends or a doula who is a medical professional trained for providing practical and emotional support during labor.
Talk to your employer about your maternity leave and share your work with your office colleagues so that they are prepared for the coming weeks. This would ensure the successful completion of the tasks assigned to you by your teammates.
Keep your bag ready with toiletries, glasses, nursing bra, phone chargers, slippers, snacks, nursing pads, several pairs of underwear, hair ties, and nightgowns.
On a final note, you must take care of your growing baby in the 31st week of pregnancy. Pay close attention to your body and make the necessary changes in your lifestyle or diet as you start preparing your bags!
All the best for your new adventure!