32 Weeks Pregnant – What Should You Feel?
Pregnancy is perceived by many as a life-changing experience. Think about the significant role of giving life to another being. Some say this is a woman’s ultimate purpose in her existence. As from a woman’s perspective, women look at motherhood as the best expression of selfless love. It is like giving saving the best piece of the cake for someone special instead of eating it.
However, pregnancy is not an easy feat. An expectant mom will be challenged in every aspect of her being. It is important for a mom-to-be to be supported by her family and friends through this journey.
Can you actually prepare yourself for motherhood? Of course! Even nature has its own way of preparing a woman’s body to motherhood. Remember the day you had your period and puberty rolled out? As time passes, you learned the ins and out of life. Soon after, you make the decisions for your future.
Then, one day, you confirmed the news about your pregnancy. Symptoms will hit you hard during the first trimester. You will wake up in the morning feeling nauseous and running to the bathroom to vomit. The cells that consist the fertilized ovum inside your body will rapidly multiply. Pregnancy hormones will make an appearance and will cause the many changes in your body. See that changing color of your nipples plus the sensitivity of your breasts? These signs are part of the masterplan to prep your body to become the sole producer of milk for your baby.
The first trimester lasts until the 13th week of pregnancy. Next in line is the second trimester. Your little one is called a fetus at this stage. Some of the symptoms mellowed a bit but there will be more back pains as the muscles are stretched to give room to the growing baby. Baby’s vital organs like the heart, kidney, and lungs are fast developing. Facial features plus the limbs are also becoming distinct.
At week 29, you are on your way to your third trimester. You will just have to count a few more months until your due date. This part of your pregnancy can be considered remarkable especially at around 32 weeks. What are the important events that take place at week 32? Read on and know the things to expect.
The baby at 32 weeks is almost 4 pounds heavy and 17 inches long. This means the child is occupying a lot of space inside your belly. As week 32 arrives, you will feel the baby squirming instead of the usual rocking movements. It is between weeks 32 and 38 that your baby will “drop” and settle head down near your pubic bone.
The term “drop” or “lightening” is one of the signs that due date is just around the corner. You will not be able to clearly see this but you will hear the people around you comment about this occurrence. It is impossible to accurately point out the day when the baby descend down the mother’s pelvis.
It is easier during vaginal delivery if the baby’s head comes out of the birth canal first. But this is not always the case, if the baby is positioned bottom down, the condition is referred to as ‘breech’. Breech babies are often delivered via cesarean section in the event that baby does not flip down days before the delivery.
You will notice by week 32 that you are gaining more weight. Half of this pregnancy weight goes to the baby as he or she doubles in size in time for completing the full term.
To support the growing baby inside of you, the body has pushed to blood volume up by 40 to 50 percent. Your expanding uterus is colliding with the other organs which causes frequent heartburn and shortness of breath.
The stretching of the ligaments and muscles on your lower body can lead to back aches. The added weight also contributes to this muscle strain. These backaches can make difficult for you to bend plus sit and stand for long hours. Lower back pains are normal but be sure to notify your doctor for severe pains as it may be a sign of preterm labor.
Have you heard about Braxton Hicks contractions? These are intermittent and mild contractions that often take place during the third trimester. This condition was first reported by an English physician named Braxton Hicks. Let’s look into the difference between Braxton Hicks and true labor contractions.
Braxton Hicks contractions:
- Are not very frequent
- Are not intense
- Will stop once you change position
- Last for less than a minute
True labor contractions:
- More intense
- Happen in regular and rhythmic pattern
- Induce more pain
- More frequent and can happen at least four times in an hour
The third trimester is a crucial period as you are near yet so far from due date. If you encounter any of these symptoms, immediately let your doctor know as these situations raise red flags to a pregnancy:
- Severe abdominal cramps
- Severe bleeding
- Rapid vomiting
- Frequent dizziness
- Extreme pain during urination
Nevertheless, if possible, you will need to move and stay active for the remaining three months into your pregnancy. Morning walks are highly recommended for expectant moms. If you have more time and resources to spare, you can enroll to a birthing class, prenatal yoga, aqua yoga and pilates.
You can also devote some of your time to write your to-do list. Here are a few reminders you can include in your notes:
- Think about your birth plan and strategize how will you execute your plans on the actual day of delivery. Indicate the items you want to pack in your hospital bag and how would your travel from your home to the hospital. You can also identify the people you want to be with as you give birth.
- At 32 to 36 weeks, you should see your obstetrician every two weeks and adjust this schedule to once a week until you deliver your baby.
- Familiarize yourself with the techniques of proper latching as you can already breastfeed your baby a few hours after birth.
- Set up baby’s bed a few days before your due date. There must be no obstruction in places near you and the baby especially when you need to breastfeed your child at night.
- Always practice safe co-sleeping. It is advisable to let baby sleep in a crib or a bassinet that is within your arm’s reach than on the bed where his or her parents sleep. This will reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
- Choose wisely the pediatrician who will check on your baby’s health. Seek the advice of family, friends, or even co-workers. Pick a doctor that has a clinic that is easily accessible and accepts the terms of your health insurance.
High Blood Pressure
At 32 weeks pregnant you may be getting tired of being pregnant. It is normal for you to constantly feel fatigued and some women can experience high blood pressure. At this point your prenatal doctor will constantly check your blood pressure. Still you should take note of headaches, any swelling of the hands and face or large weight gains. All of these can indicate problems with blood pressure. Keep track of any changes in your body which might indicate preeclamsia, the condition that triggers high blood pressure. Preeclampsia could endanger both the mother and baby's life.
Constipation and hemorrhoids may be a real problem at 32 weeks pregnant. As the uterus presses up against the intestines causing problems. To prevent constipation from causing severe hemorrhoids you should eat fruits and vegetables high in fiber and drink lots of nourishing liquids.
If you did not experience frequent urination during early pregnancy you will experience it at this point. In fact, there will be moments when you must run to the nearest restroom. At times you may even feel this symptom and realize you don’t need to urinate. This is another symptom at 32 weeks pregnant which occurs from the baby pressing on the bladder.
Many women experience anemia or a low iron content in their blood. This causes extreme fatigue and a constant feeling of being tired. Even lots of rest may not relieve the feelings of tiredness.
At 32 weeks pregnant a woman's uterus is almost full size and may even be full size, especially if she is expecting twins. This increase in uterus size may also cause heartburn and indigestion. You may also feel moment of breathlessness. To reduce these feelings you should drink large amounts of water and foods high in fiber.
Being 32 weeks pregnant is going to be tiring and uncomfortable. But just think, you only have a few more weeks to go. In just a few more weeks you will have a beautiful new addition to your family.