You are now 31 weeks pregnant, which is the beginning of week 32.
Your baby weighs about 1.7kg (1,700 grams or 3 lbs 12 oz) and measures about 43 cm from head to toe (just under 17 inches).
Your baby has now put on enough weight to make them look a little chubby! The fine hair that covered their entire body (called lanugo) disappears from their face, but remains on their body. Most unborn babies sleep about 90% of the time, in between short bursts of movement when awake (every 1 to 2 hours). It is common for babies to be active during the evenings, when their mother is trying to sleep, between 9pm and 1am!
Heartburn (indigestion or reflux) is a feeling of burning or discomfort in the chest and throat, usually after eating. Heartburn is experienced by up to 66% of pregnant women and is more common during the last 3 to 4 months of pregnancy.
For most potential parents, being nervous or anxious about the labour and parenting is very normal, but often not acknowledged by others. We are lucky it takes around nine months to get used to the idea! If you are feeling anxious, take some time out. Learn all you can about dealing with labour and birth, or a planned caesarean, and research your options for pain management. Contemplate how you feel about having a new baby and accepting this inevitability. Talk about it with your partner or friends to help come to terms with any issues you have. Consider counselling, hypnosis and/or homeopathies to help support you.
Choosing support people
As part of planning for your birth, you may wish to consider having an extra support person during your labour (in addition to, or in place of your partner or primary support person). This decision may be influenced by your choice of caregiver(s) and where you plan to give birth. There is now quite a bit of research supporting the benefits for women having a close female support person during their labour.
Waters breaking - no contractions
The sac of waters (known as the amniotic fluid) can rupture or break before labour starts, during the labour process or not until the actual birth. If your waters break at home, you should let your caregiver know.
Augmenting the labour
Augmenting means to 'increase or enlarge'. The augmentation of labour refers to interventions used to increase the intensity of labour contractions, particularly after the waters have broken. Augmentation differs from induction, in that the labour has already started in some way. Labour can be augmented using natural therapies or through medical interventions.
Monitoring your baby
Your baby's heartbeat may be electronically monitored during the pregnancy, if your waters break, or during prelabour or labour. This is done using a continuous cardiotocographic machine (CTG), which records the baby's heart rate continuously on a piece of paper.
Meconium stained amniotic fluid
Around 10% of unborn babies open their bowels before they are born. This turns the amniotic fluid green, yellow or brownish in colour. Meconium stained waters can be associated with the baby having a short temporarily reduced oxygen supply at some point in time, or a slowly reducing level of oxygen over a longer period of time. You can read about this here.
Your pregnancy - Week 32