38 Weeks Pregnant – what to expect

Now you're 38 weeks pregnant, this week is all about big bumps, epidurals, waters breaking and fruit and nut yoghurt!

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Watch our video to see what your baby looks like this week

Remember that wax (vernix) and hair (lanugo) that used to cover your baby’s skin? Both are pretty much gone now, shed into the amniotic fluid  – that your baby swallows bits of. This partly explains why your baby’s very first poo (called ‘meconium’) is going to be particularly sticky and thick.

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And here’s a 3D scan of a 38 week baby…

So what’s happening to your body this week?

It’s been 38 long, long weeks and, frankly, you’ve probably had enough of this whole pregnancy thing by now.

You feel huge and heavy and about as nimble as a hogtied hippo. Everything aches or itches or rubs, and it’s all just a mighty pain in the piles.

Oh, and if one more person comments about the size of your bump, you might just flatten them with a well-aimed bellyflop. We so know how you feel! And we kind of think it’s nature’s way of preparing you for labour: if you feel like this, anything’s got to be better than being pregnant, right?

In the meantime, we recommend moaning – a lot. A late-pregnancy trouble shared is not exactly a late-pregnancy trouble halved – but it certainly helps!

Our MFMer’s 38-week bump of the week

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Are you taking pics of your changing bump in these late stages? Check out other MFMers’ belfies in our 38 week bump gallery.

Did you know? Your baby’s now the length of… 2 loaves of sliced white

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This week, your baby measures around 49.8cm – the same as two loaves of bread!

And is around the weight of… an empty lightweight suitcase

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Your baby now weighs around 7lb (3.2kg)!

4 things you might need to know this week

MFMers’ tip of the week from our forum

“The “palpable” or “engaged” thing on your antenatal notes is so confusing! It’s basically a measure, in finger-width ‘fifths’, of how far down your baby’s head is into your pelvis: palpable means what the midwife can feel, and engaged means what she can’t. So 2/5ths palpable is the same as 3/5ths engaged” – Charbar15

Want to share your pregnancy with others going through the same as you? There’s a birth club for your due date – take a look

Got yourself some breastfeeding goodies yet?

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Leaking colostrum through your bra and onto a favourite silky blouse (or even a meh cotton one) can really upset you once you’ve had your baby – so splash out on some absorbent nipple pads now, while you’ve still got the wherewithall.

Same goes for cream to keep your nipples supple and hydrated (ooh, doesn’t that sound fun) and don’t forget to pick up a breastfeeding cover (sometimes called a nursing cover) so you can keep your breastfeeding fashionably under wraps.

Our preg recipe for week 38 – Fruit and nut yoghurt

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Why sunflower seeds are great for your baby

They’re such teeny-tiny things, yet sunflower seeds still manage to pack in protein, vitamins A, B, D, E and K, folic acid, magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium and zinc.

They also contain tryptophan, which can increase production of serotonin, a brain chemical that can calm your mind and boost your mood. Handy when you’re irritably hoiking a hot, heavy bump around all day.

See the full recipe and get cooking…

Baby namer – what do you think of these unusual names?

Unsure about choosing a traditional name? Looking for something more exotic? What do you think of these names inspired by the natural world?

Azura
Azura is a Persian name that describes the blue of the sky on a clear summer’s day.
Celeb baby-name-check: Alesha Dixon named her first daughter Azura.

Levon
Levon is the Armenian form of Leon – that means lion in Greek. Pronounced Lee-von, it’s also the name of a famous 1970s Elton John song (look it up on YouTube, it’s pretty epic).
Celeb baby-name-check: Uma Thurman named her first son Levon.

If you’re in need of more inspiration, check out our Baby Names section for lots more ideas.

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So that’s plenty for this week, want to take a peek at what lies ahead – or look back at last week?

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