At 31 weeks pregnant, you’re probably gaining weight at a rate that surprises you! You may also have lots of swelling. This can be aggravating, especially if you’re having trouble wearing your shoes.
Listen to your body as you go into these last weeks. Slow down when it tells you to slow down, but make a list of the things you’ve left to accomplish, so that you’re not down to the wire on too many things.
31 Weeks Pregnant – Your Body
At 31 weeks pregnant, the best way to describe your body right now is expanding. You may feel a bit clumsy, as your centre of gravity is not what it used to be. It’s getting very crowded in there with your lungs being pushed up. Try to keep your posture straight and give your lungs as much as space as possible.
Continue to get some exercise as it will make you feel and sleep better. Movement keeps circulation going and can help reduce swelling in your feet and legs. Remember to keep the exercise low key and take a break if you get winded.
The amount of exercise you’ve been used to up to this point should guide how much you do in the future. Women who are regular runners may still be running at this stage of pregnancy. But this is not the time to step up your exercise program, or to start one if you haven’t been exercising. Every expectant mother can benefit from a leisurely walk. Take a look at our article on exercise in pregnancy.
You’re probably experiencing lots of Braxton Hicks contractions now. If they become regular or they begin to be painful, it is possible you might be in labour. Contact your doctor or midwife if this happens. Remember to drink plenty of water and change positions often to help minimise them.
Frequent headaches are a common complaint during the last weeks of pregnancy. They can be caused by stress or they may be related to hormones. Closing your eyes for a few minutes may help, as will not getting overheated. Check with your doctor regarding over the counter medicines that are safe for you if they get too severe. Keep up your water intake too.
31 Weeks Pregnant – Your Baby
Your baby’s brain is working overtime connecting up nerve cells at a rapid pace. The outside world is helping this process along, with the sounds and movement that is filtering through to him. All five of baby’s senses are working now and his irises react to light.
You’ll notice now that baby is quiet for longer periods of time. That’s because he is spending more time in REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep, an important stage of sleep for stimulating the brain for learning. Your baby is processing information now and can track light.
Your baby’s weight is about 1.8 kg and he is about 38-44 cm long. He will gain about .22 kg each week from now on and is the size of a coconut.