31 Weeks Pregnant: The 3rd Trimester Glow…Before the Groans
Your Baby at 31 Weeks
Your little hitchhiker is three-quarters of the way to her destination! And, it is starting to get a little snug inside your belly.
Size of baby at 31 weeks pregnant: Your baby is as big as a pineapple.
She weighs 1.5 kilos (give or take a few ounces) and is just short of a bowling pin (about half a meter).
During these final months of pregnancy, your baby’s brain and skinny little body will do some serious bulking up. She will be working on growing some chubby thighs and pudgy cheeks. She is still kicking a lot but has less and less room to do so. The bigger she gets, the harder it will be to take a deep breath.
From now to 40 weeks, your baby’s brain will double in weight! In fact, her development has already made lots of progress. For example, her senses are totally clicking: She can taste, hear, see, and feel. And when she is born, she will even be able to recognise the distinct smell of her very own mum. (Newborns put next to pads soaked with their mum’s milk versus the milk of another woman…will prefer to turn to their mum’s milk! Now, that is amazing!)
31 Weeks Pregnant Is How Many Months?
If you are 31 weeks pregnant, then you are approximately 6 months and 3 weeks pregnant.
31 Weeks Pregnant: What to Expect
That wonderful pregnancy glow persists into the 3rd trimester…it is a happy time! But some new complaints may make their debut. One of the biggest—no pun intended—is swelling. All that extra weight in your belly is pushing down and compressing the big vessels in your pelvis. That makes your lymph and blood back up into your legs and feet. Compounding that is the fact that your body is tanked up with quarts and quarts more body fluid than you had pre-bump. That is why it is common for every part below your bellybutton to balloon, including your genitals (eek!).
Swelling is even worse if your job requires that you stand for hours a day. So, wear compression stockings and—when you can—put your feet up. It helps to cut back on salty foods (especially take-away and processed foods). And drink lots of water! That may sound counterintuitive, but water flushes extra salt out of your system. For full-body relief, find a pool for a little float time—the gentle pressure of the water on your body eases swelling and helps your circulation.
Those swollen veins can pop out causing 3-D, wormy-looking varicose veins and hemorrhoids. (Any varicose veins you get now will likely improve or disappear completely after your baby is born.) If not, you can have them removed with laser therapy. Treat hemorrhoids with warm sitz baths, laxatives to avoid constipation, and witch hazel wipes to soothe the pain.
31 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms
Common symptoms during your 31st week of pregnancy include:
- Occasional headaches
- Frequent urination
- Swelling of feet and ankles
- Varicose veins
- Sleep problems
31 Weeks Pregnant To-Do List
Research breast pumps: If you will be breastfeeding, you will want to get a pump—especially if you will be going back to work. Your insurance provider may ship you a pump for free. Just call them and ask for instructions. (Do not start pumping before the baby comes…it can trigger early contractions!)
Buy nursing bras and a pumping bra: Along with the pump, breastfeeding mums should pick up at least one nursing bra and pumping bra. A pumping bra will allow you to go hands-free while pumping—crucial for multitasking!
Wash baby clothes and linens: You do not need to wash every single thing you have bought for your baby just yet (you may decide to return some of it depending on how big she is), but you will want to have a few duds ready for her big arrival home.
Assemble your first-month support team: The early weeks are exhilarating and exhausting. The new-baby highs are high, and the lows can be pretty low. While you are spending so much time and energy caring for your baby…who is caring for you? Ask for help: enlist friends to bring you a casserole, do some cleaning, or just to listen to your honest feelings. It will make you feel a whole lot happier!
Pregnancy Myth or Fact?
You must stop taking plane flights once the 3rd trimester starts.
Every pregnancy is different, but if you have had no complications and are not high risk, most healthcare providers will okay flying until 34 weeks. Airlines, meanwhile, have their own policies—you can find a list of those right here. BTW, it is not a bad idea to ask your healthcare provider for any referrals in the area where you are traveling…in case you have a problem while you are away.
Quote of the Week
People always say that pregnant women have a glow, and I say it’s because you’re sweating to death. — Jessica Simpson
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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider. Breastmilk is the best source of nutrition for babies. It is important that, in preparation for and during breastfeeding, mothers eat a healthy, balanced diet. Combined breast- and bottle-feeding in the first weeks of life may reduce the supply of a mother's breastmilk and reversing the decision not to breastfeed is difficult. If you do decide to use infant formula, you should follow instructions carefully.