9 months of pregnancy
Month 9 of pregnancy is the last month of pregnancy. The child is ready to begin his new period of life and is confidently approaching the term. When the ninth month arrives, it is important to be fully ready, for admission to hospital. The child is now considered to be delivered. Therefore, it is advisable to be alert.
Arrange all your affairs, set up the nursery and organize the household affairs so that they involve you minimally once you go home with the newborn.
Fetal development in the 9th month of pregnancy
A child at this stage of life is fully ready for life outside the mother’s womb. The lungs are already performing breathing movements, the suckling reflex is sufficiently developed, and the digestive system is ready for breast milk. The child can already boast of a proportionally developed body, and its skin has a delicate pink color.
The 9th month of pregnancy is a period in which the child occupies a head-down position, staring at the birth canal. It already occupies the entire inside of the uterus and the possibility of active movements is practically absent. “The final touches are being put on the formation of the nervous system. The intestine is characterized by relatively good peristalsis, there is the primordial mud – meconium, which consists of decayed blood cells, dead skin cells, processed amniotic fluid, etc.
A certain amount of iron has accumulated in the liver. It is needed so that after birth it can create blood until the child is 1 year old. And the heart is ready to fully assume its responsibilities. When the child is born, it will ensure the circulation of blood through the lungs. At this stage, they are not involved in blood circulation, as the child is not yet breathing in the true sense of the word.
During the ninth month of pregnancy, the process of relaxation of the testicles in the scrotum may continue. In rare cases, this process may not be complete even after birth. The immune system is fully formed. It will continue to improve after the child is born. It now receives antibodies via the placenta from the mother’s organism. It will then extract them from breast milk.
In the last month, individual parameters such as weight and height are finally determined. A premature baby weighs on average 2600 to 3600 grams. As for his height, it should be within 48-54 cm. Deviations from these indicators are permissible and are often normal.
Sensations of a pregnant woman in the 9th month of pregnancy
This month brings the desired relief to the pregnant woman. Two weeks before the term, the child’s head has already moved into the pelvic area, this means that the uterus is no longer pressing on the lungs. The gasping goes away too. At the same time, heaviness may occur low down in the abdomen, even a dull ache in the area of the inner thighs, groin and pubic bone – the child’s head is pressing on the nerve endings.
The uterus continues to squeeze the stomach and bladder. The feeling of bloating, constipation and frequent walking on little need will accompany the expectant mother until the very end of pregnancy. The risk of oedema remains, as does the likelihood of developing varicose veins. Vaginal discharge during the last 9 months of pregnancy will change in character. They will now be thicker and contain more mucus. You may even notice bloody traces.
The abdomen has significantly increased in size. Your skin may itch and this may cause you a lot of discomfort during the day. It is advisable to take daily care of it – by applying cream and doing massage.
In the ninth month, it is not excluded that a pregnant woman complains of dizziness and fainting. The cause lies not in the stuffy space she is in or sensitivity to smells, but in the squeezing of the hollow vein when lying on her back. This is why doctors advise sleeping and lying on one’s side during the last months of pregnancy.
And during this month, the expectant mother may exhibit unusual absent-mindedness, inertia and even forgetfulness. At the same time, it is not excluded that there are hours or days of a burst of energy, hyperactivity, but also unexplained fatigue. In general, the self-esteem of a pregnant woman in this month is rather pleasant. Cardinal changes in the body do not occur. Braxton Hicks contractions continue, which prepare the body for the upcoming birth.
Signs of approaching childbirth
It is important, and therefore we will repeat, that in the ninth month labor can begin at any moment. Among the usual harbingers of the end of pregnancy and the beginning of childbirth, in addition to an increase in the frequency of contractions and characteristic painful sensations, are:
- Relaxation of the abdomen.
- Frequent visits to the toilet at little need.
- Sometimes a few days before the onset of labor, the pregnant woman’s weight decreases significantly. It is about losing 1-2 kilograms. It is explained by hormonal changes, weak appetite and a decrease in the amount of fluids in the body.
- The fall of the so-called “plug”, which is a mucous mass. The cervical canal, depending on its maturation, begins to open. The “plug”, which has hitherto covered it, falls off. This sign can easily be detected by the pregnant woman, as it is noticeable on the underwear. It is stained with blood-tinged mucus.
Recommendations for nutrition in the ninth month of pregnancy
At this stage of pregnancy, you are already accustomed to a certain diet that supplies your body and that of the child with all the necessary nutrients. You know very well which foods are recommended for consumption and which should be avoided. You may have even compiled a list of products that aggravate symptoms such as heartburn, constipation, flatulence, etc.
In the last weeks of pregnancy, you should pay attention to the amount of food you take. It can affect the birthing process and the self-esteem of the newborn.
Let’s introduce a few more rules, they are new:
- Eliminate from the menu all products that are allergens. They increase the risk of the child developing allergies.
- Give up the consumption of pate and unpasteurized soft cheeses, canned products and other foods that can be a source of intestinal infection.
- As before, continue to take foods that contain calcium – milk, cottage cheese. In the second half of pregnancy, the need for calcium is increased, but in the last month it should not be overdosed – excess calcium can provoke rapid healing of the fontanelle of the child, and as a consequence – increased intracranial pressure. Per day it is advisable to consume 1-2 cups of yogurt or 150 grams of cottage cheese.
- During this month it is desirable to forget about fatty, fried and salty foods. Stay away a little more from sweet foods as well.
- Reduce the amount of meat and fish intake. They are capable of lowering the elasticity of tissues, increasing painful sensations during childbirth.
- The main part of the menu of a pregnant woman in the ninth month should be fruits and vegetables. Instead of sauces, in salads use olive oil and a little lemon juice.
- Cook mostly steam, stew and bake. Avoid hot foods.
- Remember to drink enough fluids daily.
Sex in the third trimester
In quite a few cases, intimate relations during the ninth month of pregnancy are not only allowed, but also useful.
Of course, it is never superfluous to consult the supervising gynecologist. He will advise you on the basis of the numerous examinations so far.
If you get permission to have sex, it is important to choose as comfortable positions as possible. Be sure to exclude those that require pressing the abdomen. Optimal postures are sideways and on your knees.
Sex in the ninth month has been shown to be an effective method of naturally stimulating labour. The effect is explained by the presence of special substances in semen – prostaglandins, which are able to provoke uterine contraction and soften its tissues.
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