Your Pregnancy at Week 34

by Your Baby Club

You can breathe again!

Week 34

your baby this week:

Starting to get ready for take-off, if you have an organised baby, they may be starting to get into the correct position and be moving lower down into the pelvis. This is called 'engagement' and results in you having more space in your abdomen and your lungs being less squished - you can finally breathe! You may even be able to put the heartburn tablets away as your heartburn settles a little.

Some of the growth your little one will have experienced this week, will be things such as having nearly complete fingernails and if it's a boy, his scrotum will now be fully formed, and his testicles are slowly making their way down to their final destination. Baby is now around 45cm long and nearly 2.2kg.

your body:

For your body, a somewhat more unwanted change may be underway, stretch marks! Unfortunately, it is estimated that at least 1 in 2 women get them29, however, these marks do not stay as vivid as they start out, but fade over time. It may be worth keeping your skin moisturised morning and night, drink lots of water, and manage your eating habits to avoid rapid weight gain.

One thing you could consider starting at this stage in the pregnancy would be perineal massage. These massages gently stretch your perineum. By doing these massages, you can help in reducing the chances of significant tearing during labour.

Another thing you may be experiencing at this stage is some changes to your vision and should be reported immediately to your midwife. This is because of those annoying pregnancy hormones, and it can cause a variety of different changes to your sight. Some of these changes could include blurry vision, more near/farsighted than usual and less ability to tear up/cry.

These changes are only temporary; however, it may be more comfortable to wear glasses rather than contact lenses during this time. One thing to keep in mind, is that some more serious vision changes can be a sign of pre-eclampsia, so be sure to mention any changes to your doctor or midwife to make sure you are properly checked and okay.

Louise Broadbridge - Our Expert Midwife

Hi, my name is Louise, I am a Registered Midwife, founder of Let's Talk Birth and Baby and the face behind Instagram's The Honest Midwife. I have worked in health settings for the past 30 years, the majority of which have been working in children and family settings.


your tips & to do's:

Install the car seat this week! Since about 90 percent of new parents install their car seat incorrectly, be sure to review the car seat instruction manual and your car’s owner's manual and correctly follow both. The safest place in your vehicle - usually the middle, back seat - is where you should put your little one's car seat. It needs to face backwards, and the base needs to be tightly secured. Once you have the car seat installed in your vehicle, get it inspected at a station listed in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s directory.

Are you thinking of breastfeeding? Though breast milk is naturally good for your baby, breastfeeding your baby may not come so naturally. The U.S. Surgeon General recommends breast milk for the first six months of life. It is easier for babies to digest breast milk than it is to digest formula. Your breastmilk contains the perfect amount of fat, sugar, water, and protein needed in order for your little one to grow and develop. Your breast milk even protects your baby from bacteria and viruses, as it is rich in antibodies. If breastfeeding becomes a struggle in any way, it's a good idea to ask for some professional help. Many hospitals employ lactation consultants and have a knowledgeable nursing staff to help you. Doulas and midwives are also a valuable resource to help you navigate these unfamiliar waters.

Over the course of your pregnancy, you've probably imagined your delivery going many different ways. Or maybe you've avoided thinking about the fact that this baby, who keeps getting bigger, will have to get out of your body somehow or another. Either way, you're getting close to the time where things start to happen.

Most women will progress through each stage of labor and experience a vaginal delivery successfully. But for some women, progress through the stages of labor doesn’t naturally occur. This, and other factors, determine a necessity for a cesarean. Be prepared because labor can change in an instant. The medication-free, doula-assisted, natural labor you envisioned might become an emergency c-section, with you under general anesthetic. No matter what turns may come, your doctor is there to assist you in reaching the desired outcome, which is a healthy baby and mother.

Some women feel guilty if they don't see childbirth as the magical experience they imagined. Instead, they are just glad to have it over with and want to go to sleep. Other mothers may feel guilty because their labor didn't progress, and they had a c-section. They feel as if their body has failed them, and they mourn the delivery they thought they would have. Women who deliver pre-term babies often wonder if there was something that they could have done differently to avoid an early birth, and the accompanying NICU time. It can be difficult to let go of this guilt.

As you prepare for delivery, try to keep an open mind about the experience. It is wonderful to envision what will take place, to stay involved and make a birth plan. But you should try to give yourself an allowance for what might happen. You might find that laboring without an epidural is much more painful than you ever imagined and opt for the pain medication. You may find that after 24 hours of labor, with no progress, you are ready to discuss a c-section.

Be ready to let things happen. A don't forget to write in your pregnancy journal.

your symptoms

Below is a list of pregnancy symptoms commonly experienced during week 34.

  • Constipation and/or hemorrhoids
  • Increased vaginal discharge
  • Stretch marks
  • Sweating
  • Heartburn
  • Braxton Hicks
  • Interrupted sleep
  • Backaches and/or leg cramps
  • Swelling or bloating
  • Crazy dreams
  • Nesting

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Your Baby Club

Your Baby Club HQ
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Articles on are a mixture of informative pieces, anecdotal accounts and professional advice from our panel of Bloggers, Writers and Experts. The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official view of Your Baby Club UK

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