At the 35th week, the finishing line is already in sight. The baby has grown progressively and it is only about 5 weeks to the due date. However, the delivery date may be even nearer because only 5% of babies are born on their due date. The point at this moment is that you must stay prepared for labor and even delivery.
Baby’s growth and development in week thirty five
By the 35th week, most of the baby’s organs have matured and chances of survival are over 99%. Indeed, only a very short period would be required in the hospital for observations on blood pressure and body temperatures.
Because the baby has grown so much, the space in the uterus is very limited and complete flips, flops, and summersaults are no longer possible. However, the kicks, nods, and other movements will become stronger this week.
The baby’s lungs have been developing and are now maturing. Starting from around the 31st or 32nd weeks, the lungs started releasing surfactants that coat the entire surfaces of the air sacs while keeping them open. The cover will be very crucial in helping the baby start breathing after delivery.
If the baby is born prematurely, the quantity of surfactant is low and there is a greater risk of respiratory distress. If any complication makes you go into preterm labor at the 35th week, the doctor would administer corticosteroids to hasten production of surfactant. Interestingly, girls lungs mature faster compared to boys lungs and will have less trouble breathing compared to boys at the same age.
Changes to expect in Mom’s body during week 35
By the 35th week, a mother’s nesting instincts have started taking a toll on you and you will find a great urge to perfect the place for your baby. You will get yourself taking longer hours thinking about the baby nursery and re-organizing everything to suit the new guest.
Though you are about 5 weeks to time, it is important you be fully prepared. One way is mastering the neighboring routes to your facility of delivery. Know the shortest routes, where to pack, and how to start the process. In the US, pregnant mothers use LDR (labor, delivery, and recovery) where you will take most of the time after reaching the hospital. However, if using a private facility, you might even discuss the setting with the management. For celebrities, private hospitals even reserve full wings for their use only.
A closer look at Group B Streptococcus
At around the 35th week, your doctor will screen you for Group B Streptococcus (GBS) which is a bacteria living in the reproductive, urinary, and digestive tract. Group B Strep is different from Group A strep because the latter stays in the chest.
Though GBS is usually harmless and will not bring any signs of sickness, it can bring a lot of dangers to the kid and even cause life-threatening issues to the baby. If the vaginal tract is infected with the bacterium, the baby can be infected during normal (vaginal) delivery. If the baby gets infected, the signs of infections will be evident within the first 24 hrs of delivery.
The main problems to check out on your kid include;
- Feeding issues
- Difficulty waking up
- Difficulty breathing
If the baby is infected with GBS, he/she will be treated appropriately with antibiotics. Besides, if the test will show that the mother is also infected before delivery, she will be treated using antibiotics to keep the baby safe.
Banking cord blood
When the baby is born, the cord and placenta are very rich in stem cells (hematopoietic) that can be used in treating various diseases. The stem cells are not usually present in the common blood cells and can be used to treat immune and metabolism-related disorders. The cells are also useful in cancer treatment especially those related to bone marrow and blood.
To use the stem cells for treatment, the doctor has to test the compatibility appropriately to prevent rejection and even harm to the sick person. If you want to store the cord blood, it can only be done in the blood bank and details added into the database for easier search and use. You will be charged an annual free fee for storing the cord blood.
Some consideration to factor when deciding to collect and store the cord blood;
- The probability of needing stem cells from cord blood is very low, about 1 in every 2,700 people.
- The number of diseases that individual stem cells can be used to treat is very limited.
- It remains unclear how long the cord blood can be stored.
Things to do during the 35th week
- Let the nesting instincts guide you so that you can put final touches on the baby’s living section paying attention to the cot, beddings, and comfort items.
- Confirm with your health insurance company that everything is okay. This is important even if you had not done so before. In some cases, the insurance caters for all costs including medical and even transport.
- Pack some baby’s clothes designated for the hospital and put them inside the delivery bag so that in case you need to rush for delivery, everything will be ready.
- Start thinking more about breastfeeding. You need to master the skills of breastfeeding immediately before delivery and even thereafter. Breasts milk advances the baby’s immunity that was in the uterus until he/she gets used to life outside the womb. Note that breastfeeding is also very important in helping the uterus get back to its normal position.
- Continue preparing the baby’s nest. It is advisable to take several outlooks that you will keep changing after several months so that the entire family can enjoy more.
- If you want an assistant to be by your side immediately after delivery, this is the time to complete the preparations. It is advisable to get a qualified nursing professional that can assist you take care of the baby and give you appropriate advice about the post-pregnancy period.
- Take most of your time resting because the large uterus and regular aches are taking a big toll on you. This is also a great time to get a treat at a local spa for a lovely massage, pedicure, and facials. Remember to stay out of hot saunas and very hot showers.
- Take enough time with your baby and husband because immediately after delivery, that privacy might be lost completely as close relatives and friends keep trooping day after day.