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 34

34th Week of Pregnancy

Putting Your Birth Plan in Place
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Baby's Growth and Development When You're 34 Weeks Pregnant

Between the 34th week of pregnancy and the 37th week of pregnancy, your baby continues to refine his systems and put on significant weight.

  • He probably weighs about 5½ pounds and is about 12½ inches, about as long as a loaf of bread, from head to rump (plus an additional 5 inches or more in legs!).
  • The white, waxy coating protecting your baby's skin (vernix) thickens this week.
  • The soft downy hair (lanugo) that insulated your baby's skin so effectively for months is now almost gone.
  • Your baby's fingernails have reached the tip of his fingers.
  • Your baby might gain about a half a pound this week as his weight continues to build quickly.

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Your Changing Body When You're 34 Weeks Pregnant

You soon might notice a difference in your pregnancy symptoms now or in the coming weeks, especially if your baby moves lower into your pelvis. Here’s what else is going on in your 34th week of pregnancy:

Look Who Dropped In!

  • Your baby could drop or settle into your pelvis in preparation for birth as early as this week. This is called lightening.
  • When your baby does drop into the pelvic area, he is considered engaged or in position for birth.
  • Lightening can happen several weeks before your baby's birth, especially if this is your first pregnancy. Or, it could happen the day your labor begins.
  • You might notice that your belly seems lower and more tilted forward when this happens.
  • Lightening might bring relief from upper-body pregnancy symptoms, such as shortness of breath and heartburn; however, in exchange, you'll possibly feel increased pressure on your pelvis, hips, and bladder.
  • This can cause discomforts, such as leaking or frequent urination, to increase.
  • If you've experienced numbness or pain from pressure on your sciatic nerve, this also should stop if your baby drops now or in the next few weeks.
  • You might continue to notice late-pregnancy swelling in your legs or ankles throughout this week. Your doctor will continue to watch this during checkups.
  • Braxton-Hicks contractions might continue to prepare your body for childbirth.

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Wellness and Nutrition When You're 34 Weeks Pregnant

Exercising Now for Labor Later!
During your 34th week of pregnancy, certain muscles in your body will get a significant workout during the birth of your baby. You can help these muscles prepare now.

  • Kegel exercises strengthen your pelvic floor. They also can help with any immediate leaking urine and hemorrhoid problems.
  • Pelvic tilt increases stomach muscles and flexibility for birth. It also can alleviate current back pain.
  • Tailor sitting (sitting cross-legged) stretches and strengthens muscles in your back and thighs and makes the joints in your pelvis more flexible for an easier delivery. It also improves blood flow to your lower body. Try it:
    • Sit on the floor with your back straight (or with your back against the wall, if you need extra support).
    • With knees bent to the side, bring the soles of your feet together and pull your heels in toward your groin area.
    • Let your knees slowly drop to each side until you feel a stretch in your inner thighs. Be sure you don't bounce.

Finding a pediatrician

Learn About Labor and Prepare Your Plan

Fill up on fluids during your 34th week of pregnancy