The 3rd trimester: Week 33

You probably feel like time is crawling! You may look like you're ready to go into labour, but sorry, you've got at least another 6 weeks to go before baby is ready to arrive, healthy and strong.

Your baby

How your baby's growing:

The brain continues to grow; fat is rapidly added to prepare for life in the chilly world outside. A boy's testicles are descending from the abdomen into his scrotum (though sometimes this is delayed). The pupils of your little one's eyes can now detect light, constrict and dilate, allowing her to see vague shapes. Her lungs are now almost completely mature and she's moved into position for delivery.

The next time you go in for a check-up, your gynae should be able to tell whether she's facing head down or bottom first.

Your body

How you may be feeling:

With not very long to go before your delivery date, now is a good time to figure out what kind of pain relief you want as part of your birth plan. This is a very personal decision - some women prefer to deal with their pain through breathing techniques, others through pain-relief injections, still others through an epidural, which is an anaesthetic administered through a soft, thin catheter placed in your lower back.

Gather as much information as you can on the different techniques, talk with girlfriends and family members about their birth experiences and ask your gynae for information on available options. The more you know, the more comfortable you'll be with choosing a pain-management plan that's right for you.

Tip of the week

No doubt you're starting to feel rather house-like, so you might want to know exactly where all that extra weight is actually going (based on a typical 13kg pregnancy):

Uterus 1 kg

Placenta 1 kg

Amniotic fluid 1 kg

Breasts 1 kg

Blood 1,3kg

Retained water 1,5 kg

Fat 3 kg

Baby 3,4 kg

Do remember that every woman and every pregnancy is different - but a rough guideline says shorter women should expect to put on between 10 - 12 kg and taller women 12 - 15 kg

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