40 weeks through to birth | EWmums.com

40 Weeks Pregnant: What's Happening

The beginning of the end.

You’ve made it, it’s week 40 and you are now at the official end of your pregnancy.

After months of anticipation, your due date rolls around, and... You're still pregnant. It's a frustrating thing, but common. You may not be as late as you think, especially if you're relying solely on a due date calculated from the day of your last period because sometimes women ovulate later than expected. If you go past your due date, your midwife or doctor will schedule you for a scan after 40 weeks to ensure that it's safe to continue the pregnancy. If you don't go into labour on your own, most OBs will induce labour when you're between one and two weeks overdue — or sooner if there's an indication that the risk of waiting is greater than the risks of delivering your baby without further delay.

Braxton Hicks contractions may become more pronounced. Also called "false labour," these contractions may be as painful and strong as true labour contractions but do not become regular and do not increase in frequency as true contractions do. Another sign of labour, the rupture of your amniotic sac, could happen any day now. When their water breaks, some women experience a large gush of water and some feel a steady trickle. Many women don’t experience their water breaking until they’re well into labour.

Pregnancy calendar - 40 weeks

Your baby is now the size of a...


Your baby, if not already here, will be ready to meet the world very soon. Her skull remained unfused to aid labour and delivery, but she is otherwise physically ready to meet her mummy and daddy. You are, however, still providing the vital nutrients to help the baby survive so whether the baby is birthed on her due date, before or after remember to eat well and enjoy your time together. Your baby will dictate when you go into labour, not your body, baby’s start labour when they are ready to be born so don’t worry if you go a little over your due date just stay in touch with your OB and look after yourself it won’t be long now.

Pregnancy symptoms at 40 weeks

Leg cramps, trouble sleeping, fatigue and anxiety.

Tips and advice for pregnancy at 40 weeks

At 40 weeks you are probably frustrated and just want to get the baby out. Try taking long walks and having sex - both ways are proven to help induce labour.

Do your best to relax and get ready for the arrival of your baby. Make sure you have plenty of diapers and wipes on hand. Keep your friends and family updated on your condition. If possible, talk to your parents or your partner’s parents, as they have been through this before.

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