36 Week Pregnant – Your Week-by-Week Pregnancy

36 Weeks Baby is the size of Lettuce

Your baby in womb at 36 weeks is about to pop out in a few weeks. We know that this journey has been equally emotional, tiring and full of anticipation for you. Sometimes, it became hard to hold on as well.  But, trust us, the moment you hold your child for the first time, you will forget every bad night and every bad day that you have had.

How far along are you in your pregnancy?

Carrying a baby in womb at 36 weeks marks the first week of the ninth month of your pregnancy. For an average full-term pregnancy, it is just a matter of two to three weeks before you see your baby. And for a few of you, maybe sooner. The last trimester of your pregnancy is in the later stages and you are going to see a happy-go-lucky ending in a few weeks.

Is 36 weeks pregnancy a full term pregnancy?

A 36th week pregnancy is not full term. We label pregnancy full term by the time you enter week thirty-seven. There is still one week left before you and your baby reaches full term.

The most asked question in this week is about the survival chances of the baby if the baby in womb at 36 weeks gets delivered. Parents get worried about the baby born at 36 weeks survival rate. Only five percent of the babies born at 36th week are admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit. Out of the babies that are born, thirty percent experience some respiratory problems.

According to the recent studies, only 0.8% of babies die after the delivery at 36th week. Most of these babies die due to underdeveloped lungs. And some die due to infection.

Your baby at 36 weeks

36 weeks pregnant baby movement
36 Weeks Bregnant Baby Movement

The baby in the womb at 36 weeks has already gone through most of the development. In this week, the following findings are important:

Size of the baby

The baby is about as big as the average sized papaya. It measures about 18.7 inches from the head to the toe (crown to heel length). In the coming weeks, the baby continues to increase in size to ensure the maximum growth of the organs.

The weight of the baby

The weight of the baby in the womb at 36 weeks measures around 5.8 pounds. Weight continues to increase till the end of pregnancy and the baby weighs around 7 pounds in the last week of the third trimester.

The position of the baby

The process of the descent of the baby has already occurred before. But in some cases, the lighting occurs in the 36th week. This is manifested as a sudden increase in the lower pelvic pressure. The feeling of chest stuffing and tightness gets relieved as soon as your baby descends downwards.

Movement of the baby

The baby movements increase around this period of pregnancy. The baby becomes more active as compared to how it was before. This increase in activity is shown by more kicks by the baby in the womb at 36 weeks.

Lungs development

Lungs are the organs that require the most time to develop. Maturation of the lungs of the baby needs a lot of time. During this interval, the lungs develop a fluid called surfactant. This fluid helps to keep the lungs open and keep the baby breathing. If this fluid doesn’t form in enough quantities, the baby can develop severe respiratory difficulties.

Meconium production

We know that “meconium” sounds very confusing to you. In simpler words, meconium is the first baby poop (not what you expected?). It is in the 36th week that the meconium begins to form. The early passage of meconium is very important after the delivery of the baby.

Your body at 36 weeks

While carrying a baby in womb at 36 weeks of pregnancy, your body experiences the following changes:

Increased vaginal discharge

You must have noticed an increase in the amount of vaginal discharge recently. When you enter the 36th week, this discharge not only increases in quantity but the characteristics of the discharge also change. It becomes more slimy and sticky. However, if the changes are strange and feel unusual to you, consult your doctor. Changes in color, smell and consistency must be immediately reported.

Heartburn

Boy oh boy! This heartburn just would not go until you are done with your pregnancy. The constant burping, taking anti-acids and puking, again and again, is definitely so uncomfortable. Well, just hold on by knowing that all of this will be over soon with a cute baby in your arms at the end.

Bleeding

Spotting at 36 weeks is often reported by many women. A little spotting means that you are nearing the labor. But bleeding in large amounts can definitely be a sign of preterm labor. If you notice any of these signs, report to the ER as soon as possible:

  • Increased bloody discharge
  • Intense pelvic pain
  • Increased back pain
  • Heavy bleeding
  • High fever, sweats and increased heartbeat
  • Fainting pulse

All of these signs indicate that you might be going into preterm labor.

Difficulty to sleep

Insomnia or difficulty to sleep is another common complication faced by the majority of the women. Carrying a baby in womb at 36 weeks marks the beginning of the last weeks. The anticipation of labor along with so many physical stresses can definitely lessen your sleep.

Tests to take at 36 weeks

Loving couple attending doctor for pregnancy ultrasound procedure

Following tests must be taken by you while carrying a baby in womb at 36 weeks:

Group B Strep test

Catching an infection by group B Strep is fairly common in the later months. To protect yourself and avoid complications in your baby due to these infections, it is better that you get yourself tested for the presence of this infection.

CTG

CTG or Cardio topography measures the heart activity of your child. If your pregnancy has been safe so far, your baby is 90% safe around this time. But still, you must go for CTG at least once or twice a week.

Ultrasound

Ultrasound at week 36 is relatively uncommon. But extra caution never hurts. If you were to get an ultrasound done, you would be able to see your fully formed baby with frequent kicks and fully developed body parts. Might as well take a picture of that ultrasound, eh?

Must have items in your baby bag

Rushing at the eleventh hour and packing your baby bag when you’re screaming with labor pains is never a good idea. It is, therefore, important that you pack all the essentials in your baby back early. The baby bag must have the following articles:

  • Diapers
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Wipes
  • Plastic bags
  • Tissue papers
  • Baby powder
  • Clean towels
  • Baby wrapper
  • Changing pad
  • Sanitary napkins for yourself
  • Baby clothes
  • Clothes for yourself

Pack all these items early and you are good to go.

Do following preparations in your home before leaving for the hospital

With a baby in womb at 36 weeks, you never know when you might have to rush to the hospital. Do the following preparations beforehand:

Talk to your kids

There is nothing more important at this moment than talking to your older kids and preparing them for the addition of a new family member.

Prepare the baby room

Keep the baby room and all of its essentials ready. You will not have enough time afterward once the newborn comes to the home.

Hire an emergency baby sitter

Keep an emergency baby sitter on call during the last weeks. The labor pains could start any minute and there must be someone else at home to look after your kids and the house.

Sit back and relax

We cannot stress this enough. These are the last days of your pregnancy. Try to cherish them as much as you can.

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