Week 36 of Your Pregnancy
By the end of the week, your baby will be considered full-term! If your baby is not in a head-down position yet, your doctor will try to coax your baby into it. You may be feeling some pressure in your bladder these couple of weeks – but still, drink lots of water!
Some Singaporean mums report being 2cm dilated at week 37 (Mummysg), and some mums even talk to their babies to remind them not to pop so early! Measuring 33cm and weighing 2.7kg, your baby’s cramped quarters are limiting its movement. But when it does move, you may be able to identify a foot, elbow or another body part1!
Have you been counting your baby’s kicks or hiccups? Some gynaes in Singapore will advise that you start tracking in the weeks leading up to your due date. While there is no set number of movements you should feel each day, you’ll have to be aware of your baby’s movement patterns. Perhaps your baby is more active after you eat, or when you sit down to relax at night. If you notice a change in your baby’s movement patterns, be sure to let your doctor know.
At 36 weeks, your baby is now well prepared for life outside the womb! All the thumb-sucking, breathing and swallowing it has been practising has helped prepare it for its first feed of breast milk. Your baby is now ready to breathe air too. Its lungs are fully formed and ready to make the switch from taking in amniotic fluid to inhaling and exhaling air2.
Safe Sleeping Positions
Have you been tossing and turning in bed each night? While you’re trying to get as much rest as you can, you’re often worrying if your sleeping position is safe for you. After all, it feels like you’re sleeping with a watermelon, and you just can’t seem to breathe in as deeply as before. Here are some tips on helping you find a comfortable sleeping position: (Asian Parent)
- Sleep on your side – this is the safest position for pregnant women that also provides comfort and relief (it is best to sleep on your left side)
- Avoid sleeping on your back as the weight of your bump may press on your intestines and blood vessels, which affects blood circulation
- Prop yourself up with comfy pillows – under the belly, between the knees, and under your side
- Meditate or play soothing music to help you sleep
- Get your partner to give you a nice, relaxing massage!
Water of Life: Pressure on the Bladder in Pregnancy
Have you been getting the urge to go several times at night? Due to your baby’s position, there’s pressure on your bladder and you may feel the need to urinate more frequently. Staying hydrated is important, so avoid the temptation to drink less to reduce the number of toilet trips!
As a general guide, drink around 2.3 litres of water a day during pregnancy3. That comes up to about 9 to 10 glasses of water per day. This includes milk, soup, fruit juices, as well as water. If you are working up a sweat or going outside during the hottest parts of the day, be sure to drink plenty more!
Why Staying Hydrated is Important in Pregnancy
Did you know that we lose on average 2 litres of water a day? That is only possible because 60% of the human body is made up of water. It’s important that we replace this fluid to avoid dehydration and to enable our blood to carry nutrients around our body and get rid of waste effectively. As urinary tract infections are common during pregnancy4, drink enough fluids to keep your urinary tract healthy!
Signs of Dehydration
Dehydration occurs when your body loses more fluid than you take in. Signs of dehydration include5:
- Feeling thirsty
- Passing dark-coloured urine infrequently (less than 3 or 4 times a day)
- Dizziness or light-headedness
- Dry mouth, lips and eyes
To rehydrate, drink more water as soon as possible. A sweet drink like fruit juice can help replace lost sugar, while a salty snack, like salted nuts, can help to replace lost salt6.
1. Deans A. Your New Pregnancy Bible, The experts’ guide to pregnancy and early parenthood. 4th ed. London: Carroll & Brown Publishers Limited, 2013. p. 47.
2. NHS UK. You and your baby at 33-36 weeks pregnant [Online]. 2015.
Available at: www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/pregnancy-weeks-33-34-35-36.aspx [Accessed September 2016]
3. European Food Safety Authority. Scientific Opinion on Dietary Reference Values for water. EFSA Journal 2010; 8(3):1459 p.48. 4. NCT. Infections during pregnancy [Online]. 2014.
Available at: www.nct.org.uk/pregnancy/infection-pregnancy [Accessed September 2016]
5. NHS UK. Dehydration – Symptoms [Online]. 2015.
Available at: www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Dehydration/Pages/Symptoms.aspx [Accessed September 2016]
6. NHS UK. Dehydration – Treatment [Online]. 2015.
Available at: www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Dehydration/Pages/Treatment.aspx
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