Does time seem to be standing still? Do you feel that your pregnancy is dragging on? Don’t worry! Most mothers feel the same way at eight month pregnancy. It’s just a matter of a few weeks from now, and you’ll have your little bundle of joy in your arms! But before that, here’s a simple guide to help you understand pregnancy at 33 weeks.
33 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms:
Pregnant women experience the following symptoms at 33 weeks:
- Shortness of breath
- Sleeplessness and increasing discomfort when sleeping
- Numbness in the fingers and hands
- Weight gain
- Edema or water retention
- Occasional tightening of the uterus (also called Braxton Hicks)
- Overactive bladder
- Increased fetal movement
- Belly button pops out
- General clumsiness
33 Weeks Pregnant – Changes In Your Body:
From frequent visits to the washroom to discomfort when sleeping, an expecting mom’s body experiences a wide range of emotions. Here’s a list of changes that your body would undergo at 33 weeks pregnancy:
- Insomnia or sleeplessness is a common problem during pregnancy, but the problem is even more pronounced during the third trimester. Hormonal changes, anxiety over the impending birth, frequent urination, indigestion, leg cramps and the increasing discomfort of carrying a huge tummy are probable reasons. Set a bedtime routine to help you sleep better – take a warm bath, drink a glass of milk, or listen to soothing music. Do not eat or drink just before you sleep to avoid heartburn and discomfort. But if you feel hungry, eat a light snack. Try and avoid coffee, tea and other caffeine-rich beverages as they could keep you awake at night.
- Do your nails grow faster than usual? Does your hair feel thicker than usual? These changes are caused by estrogen- a pregnancy hormone that helps in the development of your baby. During pregnancy, estrogen is released from the fetal-placental unit and the ovaries. These hormones help your baby develop vital organs like liver, kidney, etc. and even prepare you for lactation. Estrogen is also responsible for the mood swings common in the third trimester.
- You may feel a tingling sensation in your fingers or find your hands and wrist become numb often during pregnancy. Carpal tunnel syndrome is common among women in their third trimester. Swelling and fluid retention increases pressure on the median nerve causing numbness to the fingers and hands. Try using a splint or keep your arm propped on a pillow when sleeping to avoid the feeling of numbness in your fingers and hands.
- At 33 weeks, your uterus keeps on expanding pushing your abdomen causing your navel to pop inside out. This is normal, and there’s nothing much that you can do. But don’t worry, because your belly button will get back to its normal position automatically after delivery.
- Don’t worry if you keep forgetting things because that’s nature’s way of preparing you for motherhood. The part of the brain that deals with emotional skills shows increased activity among expecting mothers to help them connect with their children. Amidst all the excitement and planning, a pregnant mom’s ability to focus on things diminishes. But this is just a temporary phase; things will get back to normal a few months after delivery. The only way to tackle this is to stay calm and stop being hard on yourself. Make a note of important things on a notepad and leave them in places where they are easy to see. Set a reminder on your phone or laptop. And most importantly, slow down on your work and personal commitments. Get friends and family to help you remember things.
- The third trimester is also the time when you feel like the proverbial bull in a china shop. A burgeoning tummy often throws you off balance. Do you drop things often or are afraid of tripping over when walking? Lack of sleep and constant fatigue contribute to your clumsiness. There’s nothing you can do except remain extra cautious. If you drop things, have a laugh and get on with the job at hand.
- A continuously expanding tummy is pushing all your internal organs including the lungs. Simple activities like climbing the stairs or walking become a chore. Luckily, there’s nothing much to worry. Breathlessness is a common symptom and does not harm your baby in any way. The next time you feel short of breath, remember to stand up as straight as you can. This gives more space to the lungs allow you to breathe easily.
- Braxton Hicks or false pain is common from the 8thmonth onwards. The uterus sometimes contracts leading you to believe that you are in labor. Sometimes, these contractions are painful and sometimes there’s no pain at all. But unlike actual labor, the cervix does not dilate, and contractions do not grow stronger. False labor subsides after a while or after you start/stop an activity. But if the pain increases in intensity or prolongs, it is best to call your doctor to rule out preterm labor.
- Stomach pains are also common at 33rd week of pregnancy. The ligaments supporting your uterus are continually stretched to accommodate an expanding uterus. This causes pain on both sides of your lower abdomen. Pain in and around the abdomen isn’t a cause to worry unless it follows fever or bleeding. There’s nothing much that you can do about it except change to a comfortable position.
[ Read: Symptoms Of False Labor ]
Changes In Your Baby:
At 33 weeks, your baby is growing rapidly. As fat builds up under her skin, she’s fast losing her alien-like features. Her skeletons are slowly hardening; though they are yet to develop fully. Here’s a quick synopsis of the changes that your baby may undergo during pregnancy 33 weeks:
- At eight months, the eyes are now fully developed and can pick up light. In fact, your baby can differentiate between day and night. Her heart beats faster than normal in response to light. Flash a low-watt light on your tummy and watch her respond with a wiggling movement. Make sure that you don’t expose her to strong light, or you may end up injuring her.
- Your baby is now more or less ready for life outside the womb. Fat deposits on her skin make it appear less wrinkly and red in color. Her ears are also developing.
- Although the baby’s lungs are developing, they are far from being mature. She may even practice breathing to survive in the outside world. Other internal organs like the kidney are now developed.
- The baby’s bones are beginning to harden. But surprisingly, the skull remains soft to allow easy passage for delivery.
- Your baby is growing rapidly, and there’s not much room in there for her. As a result, she’s not as active as she was before. But the kicks and punches shall continue.
- Ideally, by week 33 most babies would have turned their head down towards the pelvis and into the cervix. This is common among first-time moms.
- The skin turns from red to light pink thanks to fat that builds up inside the skin. The baby’s skin appears less wrinkly than before.
Your 33 Weeks Baby Weight:
Want to know 33 weeks pregnant baby weight in kg? Well, at 33 weeks, your baby is now the size of a pineapple. She weighs around 2 kilograms and is almost 17 inches in length when measured from head to toe. Growth continues and by the end of the week; your baby would have gained another inch. Similarly, she continues to gain weight filling your tummy.
Pregnancy Tips At Week 33 Pregnancy:
At 8 months, women often feel tired and exhausted. You are now on the last lap of your 9 month journey and probably going through a whole gamut of emotions. You’ve been patiently waiting for the baby to arrive, but now it all seems to be too much to bear. Here are some valuable tips to help you cope:
- Keep your mind away from the pain and discomfort by shopping for the baby’s clothes and accessories. And if you’ve already shopped, wash them. Children have sensitive skin. Hence, it is good to wash clothes before use to remove chemicals and other irritants. Use only mild detergent on baby’s clothes.
- Plan on the type of labor you’d like to opt for if you haven’t done already. You can either choose C-section or opt for natural labor. And if you choose the later, discuss pain relief options with the doctor.
- Do not miss out on childbirth classes if you are attending one. They help to make your birth experience as smooth as possible with detailed explanation on various aspects like breath control, CPR, etc.
- Do people often advise you to sleep while you can? They’re right! Once the baby is born, you’ll be perpetually sleep deprived. Enjoy time with friends and friends. And most important of all spend some me time.
- Practice Kegels: These are exercises specially designed to support and strengthen the uterus, bladder, and bowels. Performing Kegel exercises regularly help to prevent surgical procedures like episiotomy. This is a surgical incision to enlarge the vaginal opening thereby allowing easy passage for the baby. Besides Kegel, you also need to take care of your diet and nutrition to prevent surgical incision.
- Spend some time with your partner. If you are a first-time mom, these days are never going to come back. If you already have an older child, spend as much time as you can with him. It is not easy for him to cope with the sudden changes that come with the arrival of a newborn. He may react by being noisy or may withdraw completely. Assure him that he shall always be important to you.
- Do not skip on your daily exercise routine. Take care to not overdo or you may end up hurting yourself or the baby. Talk to your doctor to discuss which exercises are okay for you.
[ Read: 9th Month Pregnancy Diet ]
Preventing Preterm Labor:
It is not uncommon for women to go into premature labor at eight months. Although there are risks associated with premature birth at this stage, they’re significantly less. Premature contractions are attributed to various factors- mechanical and chemical. Sometimes standing for too long can trigger contractions and sometimes stress can cause early labor. Here’s how you can avoid premature delivery:
Do Not Stand For Long:
The American Medical Association recommends that pregnant women should not stand for more than four hours at a stretch after 24 weeks of pregnancy. And at 34 weeks, they should not stand for more than 30 minutes at a time. Arteries and veins surrounding the uterus are under tremendous pressure because of the continuous blood supply. They are also compressed to accommodate an expanding uterus. Standing causes further compression and even interrupts blood supply. The uterus contracts and changes shape to relieve the blockage. Contractions increase when women continue to stand for long.
[ Read: 34th Week Pregnancy ]
Do Not Lift Or Carry Heavy Objects:
The American Medical Association recommends that women should not lift objects more than 10 to 22 kilograms at 20 weeks of pregnancy and no more than 22 kilograms at 30 weeks. But these recommendations aren’t standard and may vary on a case-by-case basis. When you lift or carry a heavy object, your stomach muscles contract, causing intense pressure on the uterus. This increasing pressure can cause premature delivery.
When in anger or distress, the body releases hormones that are trained to fight. This causes preeclampsia, a condition that leads to high blood pressure among pregnant women. Doctors advise expecting moms to stay calm and composed.
[ Read: Precautions During 9th Month Pregnancy ]
What To Do In Case of Premature Contractions:
If you realize premature contractions, identify the source of your problem and sit still for some time. If the contractions subside, this is probably a case of false labor. But if they do not subside, call your doctor immediately. (1)
Tips For Dads:
Your partner isn’t feeling good about her body; she tends to have mood swings and is irritable. The least that you can do is to be patient when she is one of her elements. Superficial ways to show love and appreciation are aplenty, but the most genuine way of helping her is to step up and manage things in and around the house. (2)
Do you have something to share about your experience at 33 weeks of pregnancy? Share your thoughts here.
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