Breast milk is best for your baby

The World Health Organisation recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. Unnecessary introduction of bottle feeding or other food and drinks will have a negative impact on breastfeeding. After six months of age, infants should receive age appropriate foods while breastfeeding continues for up to two years of age or beyond. Consult your doctor before deciding to use infant formula or if you have difficulty breastfeeding.

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THIRD TRIMESTER / WEEK 31

31st Week of Pregnancy

No More Bad-Hair Days
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Your Changing Body When You're 31 Weeks Pregnant

When you’re 31 weeks pregnant, your expanding uterus might prompt several additional changes in your body's normal operation.

  • You might experience some, many, or just a few of the 3rd-trimester pregnancy symptoms.
  • Your breasts continue to grow larger.
    • Your breasts will be 1 to 3 pounds heavier by the end of your pregnancy.
    • Most of this weight is from enlarged milk-producing glands and increased blood.
    • If you already haven’t started to leak colostrum (the first milk for babies who breastfeed), you might begin soon. Breast pads are a discreet and easy way to handle this. However, you might not leak at all before delivery, which is also normal.
  • Losing urine when you laugh is no laughing matter! Ask any pregnant woman and she probably will agree that leaking urine when you cough, sneeze, or laugh can be one of the most annoying symptoms of late pregnancy.
    • Leaking urine is caused by the increased pressure of your growing uterus on your bladder.
    • This problem likely will disappear after your baby is born.
    • Looking to control little leaks?
    • Be sure you empty your bladder completely. Try leaning forward when you're on the toilet to be sure.
    • Try to go more frequently — as often as every 30 to 60 minutes.
    • Drink at least 8 glasses of fluid a day.
    • Use Kegel exercises that strengthen your pelvic floor.
    • Wear panty liners or pads if needed.
  • Beauty at its best. It’s nice to know that your beauty is one of the best benefits of pregnancy:
    • Time for a manicure? During your 31st week of pregnancy, you might have noticed that your fingernails (and toenails) grow at record pace.
    • Head-turning hair! Your hair probably is fuller and in better shape than ever before. You can thank pregnancy hormones, increased circulation, and a pregnancy-prompted change in your hair's growth cycle.

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Baby's Growth and Development When You're 31 Weeks Pregnant

During your 31st week of pregnancy, your baby's body and brain continue to make the connections that enable her systems to work as a whole. Also when you’re 31 weeks pregnant:

  • When you’re 31 weeks pregnant, your baby weighs more than 3 pounds and is 11 inches long from crown to rump, about the length of a bunch of bok choy.
  • Your baby's reproductive system continues to develop. In boys, testicles are moving from the kidneys through the groin to the scrotum. In girls, her clitoris is visible, but her labia are still growing to cover it.
  • Your baby's lungs are now more developed but are not completely mature.
  • As trillions of brain connections develop, your baby is already using all five senses.
  • You might notice that your baby has more defined periods of being awake (and active) or asleep.

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Wellness and Nutrition When You're 31 Weeks Pregnant

As priorities and excitement mount now and in the weeks to come, don't forget to carve out the time you need for exercise and planning your balanced nutrition. During your 31st week of pregnancy, get ready for:

  • Another prenatal checkup! You probably have a doctor's appointment this week or very soon, if you're now seeing your doctor every two to three weeks.
    • By the time you're 36 weeks pregnant, you'll probably begin visiting your doctor weekly.
    • These upcoming weekly appointments specifically will check your baby's progress toward birth.
  • Relaxation techniques — they're not just for childbirth. If you find yourself feeling a little anxious about childbirth, restless, or having difficulty sleeping, try some of your relaxation techniques from childbirth classes. They are great tools to use anytime! Also check out these tips.
  • Say cheese and smile! Away from the house but need to brush? Try chewing on a piece of hard cheese to cut down on the chance of pregnancy cavities. Cheese actually reduces the acidity of your mouth and decreases bacteria that can lead to cavities.