Week 39



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Your cervix is probably getting thinner now – this is called ‘effacement’.

You could have a ‘show’ at any time. If your waters break, take note of how the fluid looks and smells and call your midwife, doctor or hospital.

Your baby might have ‘engaged’, so you’ll get the feeling of pressure low down in your pelvis.

You’ll probably have lots of Braxton Hicks contractions. In fact, it might be difficult to tell them apart from the real contractions. If in doubt, call your doctor or midwife and be guided by them.


Some parents look at their newborns after birth and fall in love straight away. For other parents, bonding can take longer. Find out more about connecting and communicating with your newborn.

Your baby

Baby’s growth might slow down now, because baby is ready to be born:

  • Baby is about 35-36 cm from head to bottom, and might weigh about 3.3 kg.
  • Baby has lots of fat under the skin.
  • If you’re having a boy, his testicles are probably fully descended into his scrotum.
  • The vernix (a white, creamy substance that protects baby’s skin from the amniotic fluid) is probably all gone, although there might be a little left under the arms, in the elbow creases and under the chin.

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