Ninth month of pregnancy: all about the last gestational month

Pregnancy is a phase of preparation, both physical and mental, for the arrival of the baby.

Throughout the gestational period, mothers are anxious and expecting to meet the son or daughter who will arrive.

However, it usually takes 9 months for your baby to feel ready to come into the world and meet you!

In the last month of gestation, which goes from 37 to 40 weeks, your baby will be weighing about 2.8 kG and approximately 50 cm.

In this phase, the child already pulls the umbilical cord and sucks his fingers.

From the 7th month, or the beginning of the 3rd quarter, it is already possible for the pregnant woman to present contractions.

When feeling them, it is necessary to mark the time between one and the other in order to know how to differentiate the false contractions, called Braxton, from childbirth contractions.

We will explain better the difference between them, to assist you in the correct identification.


Symptoms and signs of childbirth

During pregnancy, the pregnant woman’s body undergoes hormonal and physical changes. In the final stretch, there are some changes that may be a sign that it is time to give birth.

Generally, it is from the 7th month of pregnancy that the mother should pay attention to the signs, sometimes subtle, that serve as a warning for the arrival of the child.

Among them we can mention the contractions, the rupture of the amniotic pouch and, in some cases, the release of the mucous plug (blood-like secretion).

Read more: What is mucous plug?

False or Braxton Hicks contractions

This type of contraction does not have a rhythm or synchrony, however, it exists in order to accustom the body to the moment of delivery.

The name is in honor of the English doctor John Braxton Hicks, the first authority to describe the phenomenon, in 1872.

Not all pregnant women experience this type of contraction. However, when it happens, they last around 30 to 60 seconds and are characterized by making the belly hard.

Childbirth contractions

Labor contractions, on the other hand, are similar to menstrual cramps or back pain .

They have a frequency of 20 to 30 minutes, until they become stronger and longer, reaching the average of a contraction every 3 minutes.

When you notice this frequency and a synchrony between the contractions, it is a sign that it is time to prepare for your baby’s arrival!

Read more: How is a normal childbirth? Really hurts?

Baby’s evolution in the last month

The 9th month of pregnancy can be compared to the final adjustments of a party. That’s when your baby is getting the last details so he can go out to meet you.

At this stage, the baby is already the average size of a Romaine lettuce.

Lung development

It is during the last month of pregnancy that the baby begins to prepare for the first breath. When the child has the first contact with the external environment, the first independent breath will take place.

Body fat gain

When entering the ninth month, the baby should already be weighing around 3kG. However, it remains there in the womb gaining weight in order to accumulate fat to withstand the temperature difference outside the belly.

Tips and care to face the ninth month

The 9th month may be accompanied by even greater tiredness and great anxiety to get to know the child.

To make this moment more special and less stressful, prefer to get things ready. Therefore, we bring you some tips that aim to help you face the last moments. Check out!

Organize the clothes you will take to the maternity ward

The moment of childbirth is always a doubt. This is because, if you are going to have a normal birth, the day of birth is at the baby’s discretion. Therefore, the ideal is to leave a bag ready with the essential items about 2 weeks before the expected date.

This will make it easier to not forget essential items for this moment.

Think about how your pet will receive the baby

This is an important point and rarely addressed by mothers. However, it is vitally important to think about how interaction between your pet and your baby will occur.

Organizing the environment and even talking to the pet can be effective in reducing risks or problems at this time.

Plan maternity visits and birth announcement

It may be that at this time many people offer help or want to visit you. Therefore, a tip is to leave this pre-established with yourself, to avoid irritation or discomfort.

Perform the cardiotocography exam

From the 38th week of gestation, the obstetrician or gynecologist, can request the cardiotocographic exam. This aims to analyze the child’s heart rate, as well as possible uterine contractions of the baby.

The procedure is carried out by means of a monitoring device, which generates a graph with the peaks of heartbeat and also of the contractions.

What is the maximum term for the baby to be born?

For the World Health Organization (WHO), the probable date of delivery, also known as PPD, occurs in the 40th week. If the baby is born before the 37th week, it will be considered premature, while those born after the 42nd week are called post-term.