Time is flying by and you’re probably starting to feel more tired now, as your baby continues to grow.
Maybe you’re getting less sleep as baby keeps you up at night. What is going on in there?
Read on to find out more about being 33 weeks pregnant and what to expect this pregnancy week.
33 weeks pregnant in months
As you know, healthcare providers refer to pregnancy in terms of weeks, starting from the first day of your last menstrual period. But sometimes it’s fun to know how many months pregnant you are.
At 33 weeks pregnant you’re 8 months pregnant.
What should I be doing at 33 weeks pregnant?
Now is as good a time as any to start checking things off your ‘to do’ list:
- Get the nursery ready and stocked with everything you will need
- Organize for car seats to be installed
- Pack your hospital bag and put it in a place where you can easily find it
- Organize care for older children while you’re in the hospital
- Stock the freezer with meals for after you get home with your new baby
- Sort out the birthing announcement
- Organize home delivery of groceries for the first few weeks after the baby is born.
If you’ve hired a doula, it’s a good time to go over your birth options in detail and to finalize your birth plan.
When you have a doula, you significantly lower your chances of having interventions during labor. This means you’re less likely to request pain relief or have a c-section.
Although some doulas take on births at the last minute, if you’re interested in hiring one, it’s best to do it sooner rather than later.
This is because the more time your doula has with you, the more time she has to help you with advice and resources.
It’s also a good idea to start thinking about breastfeeding and how to access help and support if you need it.
You’ll usually find a breastfeeding association in your area, such as the Australian Breastfeeding Association.
It’s also a good idea to find out from your hospital or midwife what’s on offer in terms of lactation consultants.
You can hire lactation consultants privately if you need some help after birth. This is a great option because you can choose someone you connect with, and you know exactly the care you’ll be getting.
Look for an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant), which is the gold standard in lactation care.
BellyBelly has plenty of helpful articles on breastfeeding and alternative feeding methods, to help you feel prepared.
33 weeks pregnant symptoms not to ignore
If you’re 33 weeks pregnant, it’s important you keep an eye out for symptoms that indicate you or your baby might be developing complications.
Some of the signs to look out for:
- Headache with visual disturbances or vision changes
- Constant pain in abdomen or anywhere else
- Really sudden swelling in your legs, ankles, hands, feet and face
- Mid sternum chest pain
- You feel like your baby is not moving, or has reduced movement
- You have vaginal bleeding
- Your water breaks. It might be clear. Yellow-green indicates meconium might be in the amniotic fluid.
Contact your doctor, midwife or healthcare provider immediately if you have any of these signs or symptoms at 33 weeks of pregnancy.
Can I sleep on my right side at 33 weeks pregnant?
You can sleep on either side. It’s preferable to avoid sleeping on your back, but you’ll find this isn’t comfortable at all after about 28 weeks pregnant.
Sleeping on your left side allows for maximum flow of blood and nutrients to the placenta. It also means less pressure on major blood vessels.
Side sleeping enhances kidney function, which means better elimination of waste products and less swelling in your feet, ankles, and hands.
Try a pregnancy pillow to find a comfortable sleeping position when you’re lying down in bed.
33 weeks pregnant and baby moves a lot
Generally, an active baby is a healthy baby. The movement is your baby exercising to promote healthy bone and joint development.
All pregnancies and all babies are different, but it’s unlikely that lots of activity mean anything other than your baby is growing in size and strength.
However, a sudden increase in fetal movements is a sign of acute fetal distress, such as in cases of cord complications or placental abruption.
Contact your midwife for an antenatal assessment if you are worried about your baby’s movements.
Can I hurt my baby by pressing on my stomach?
Your womb has strong, muscular walls and along with the amniotic fluid, does a good job of cushioning your baby.
You won’t hurt your baby by pressing on your pregnancy bump. However, if you fall or your belly is hit very hard it’s a good idea to get checked out, just in case.
Trauma to the uterus can cause internal bleeding or placental abruption. It’s better to be safe and contact your ob gyn or doctor if you’ve had an accident like this.
Which fruits should I avoid at 33 weeks pregnant?
Fruits is delicious and has lots of vitamins and minerals – perfect for nourishing your body and your baby.
However, fruits is often high in a sugar called fructose, and an excessive intake of fruit has been linked to a greater risk of gestational diabetes.
Can Eating Too Much Fruit Cause Gestational Diabetes? has more information.
Some fruits are said to be dangerous for women during pregnancy – most particularly during the first trimester.
Much of this information has either been disproved or there’s not enough evidence to support the claim.
Enjoy organic fruit in moderation, being mindful not to overconsume any one particular type of fruit.
Birth planning at 33 weeks of pregnancy
If you haven’t finalized your birth plan, now is a great time to do it.
Your birth plan should act as a guide for your healthcare providers, so they know your preferences and allow for the potential ‘what ifs’.
Having a plan empowers you to make informed choices about all aspects of your care, even if your birth outcome isn’t exactly as planned.
Your birth plan shows you’re informed of your options and the choices available to you.
You might choose to include:
- Locations where you plan to have your baby
- Acceptable medications
- Who will be present
- What you might need
- Your thoughts on interventions.
It’s important you discuss the plan with a trusted birth support person (such as your doula), who can support or advocate for you at a time when you’re most vulnerable.
BellyBelly’s article on birth plans has heaps of information and a free downloadable template that you can edit to suit you.
33 weeks pregnant weight gain
At 33 weeks pregnant, your metabolism is working at full speed. You might see your weight gain start to slow down a little as you burn calories faster than you can use them.
Most of your weight gain in the third trimester is due to your baby putting on fat reserves.
As your pregnancy progresses and baby gets bigger, you might find it harder to eat as much. Small, frequent meals can help combat this.
When your doctor or midwife measures your belly, you’ll see the baby is still getting bigger, even if you’re not gaining weight as quickly as you did earlier in your pregnancy.
Your fast metabolism is probably making you feel really warm. In fact, it’s almost as though you have an inbuilt heater.
33 weeks pregnant symptoms
You’re probably feeling your little one stretching into your ribs, filling in all the space, and squishing your organs and diaphragm. This can cause you shortness of breath and heartburn.
You might also have aches in your back and pelvis as the baby becomes heavier.
Even if you’re pregnant during winter, you can often feel very overheated.
The extra body heat and sweating can easily lead to dehydration. Be sure to drink plenty of water, as even mild dehydration can give you headaches.
Insomnia has probably reared its head (yet again) and getting a full night’s sleep now seems impossible. Most women find this happens in the third trimester of pregnancy.
Whether it’s due to hormones, or simply because you’re uncomfortable, insomnia can leave you with a foggy brain, which makes it difficult to cope.
Try these tricks to wind down before bed:
- Put your feet up and have a warm drink, like herbal tea
- Have a warm bath
- Try meditation or reading, but avoid screens as this can increase your wakefulness
- Do some gentle exercise a few hours before bedtime
- Ask your partner for a massage (it’s great for aching muscles, too).
Pregnancy Insomnia – 17 Tips For Better Sleep has more tips to deal with sleep problems.
33 weeks pregnant – cramping in lower abdomen
Braxton Hicks contractions (practice contractions) can ramp up at week 33. They tighten your tummy and can feel quite uncomfortable.
Rather than come and go, true labor contractions will keep going and the pain will increase in intensity.
If you feel this, at week 33, it could be early preterm labor.
The regular contractions might be associated with back pain that doesn’t settle.
Make sure to contact your healthcare provider if you have any signs of preterm labor.
What a baby looks like at 33 weeks?
At 33 weeks of pregnancy your baby’s brain is continuing to develop. He opens and closes his eyes when he is awake and asleep.
This means your baby can tell the difference between night and day. However, don’t expect this to mean he’ll know the difference after he is born.
Babies have very different needs after birth. To understand more, read some of BellyBelly’s many articles about babies and sleep.
We recommend 8 Facts Parents Need To Know About Babies And Sleep and How Do You Get Your Newborn To Sleep? for more information.
The amniotic fluid surrounding your baby peaks at 33 weeks pregnant. The central nervous system is completely developed.
Your baby now has his own immune system. This is an important milestone, as your antibodies are being passed on to your baby through the placenta.
You can help your baby get off to a great start in life by avoiding certain things that can affect his health.
Read 5 Ways To Give Baby’s Immune System A Head Start for more information.
33 weeks pregnant baby weight in kg
At 33 weeks pregnant, your baby’s weight is about 1.8 kg (3.9 pounds) and he is about 38-46 cm (14-18 inches) long – that’s about the size of a pineapple.