34 weeks pregnant: what moms need to know

Congratulations, you and your baby have reached the 34th week of pregnancy. You may think it's been a long time, like 1000 weeks, but it's only about 4-6 weeks until you welcome the birth of your baby. And this week, you and your baby have changed. This article will give you some information about pregnancy at 34 weeks – how mother and baby change.


1. Changes in the mother's body

As your baby continues to grow, you'll probably notice your belly getting heavier and heavier. During this time, on average, you will gain about 0.5kg to 1kg.

You'll probably also find yourself heavier due to water retention. As counterintuitive as it may sound, drinking plenty of water can help you remove excess substances and fluids from your body. In addition, water is very important for the body of mother and baby.

At this point, some moms may find their navel is wider. This is quite normal and nothing to worry about. If you find your belly button becomes more sensitive, you can put a bandage over your belly button to prevent irritation.

34 weeks pregnant: what moms need to know

During this time, on average, you will gain about 0.5kg to 1kg

2. Baby's change

2.1 Dimensions

The most important thing at this time is that your baby continues to grow in a healthy way. At 34 weeks, your baby measures about 44 cm and weighs about 2300 grams. With this size, your baby can be the size of a pumpkin.

On the other hand, your baby is also gaining weight as fat is increasingly accumulating under the skin. Not only will this make your baby look chubby and cuddly, but these fats also play an important role in helping your baby regulate her body temperature.

34 weeks pregnant: what moms need to know

At 34 weeks, your baby is about 44 cm and weighs about 2300 grams

2.2 Development of organs

Most of the hair on your baby's body is slowly disappearing. Some fluff will remain after birth, but will gradually disappear soon after. During this time, your baby's eyes have also developed to the point where they can now dilate or shrink when stimulated by light. At the same time at 34 weeks, your baby's lungs are also developing quite well.

2.3 Gender differences

If you're having a boy, his testicles are moving from the abdomen to the scrotum. About 3-4% of boys are born at full term, but the testicles have not yet descended into the scrotum. In the majority of these children the testicles will have descended into the scrotum before the age of 1 year. About 30% of boys born prematurely also have testicles that have not yet descended into the scrotum (undescended testicle).

2.4 Baby's movements

Because your baby is getting bigger, his legs are often bent to his body. As a result, you may find your child less active. But you'll notice more pronounced movements such as your baby's feet or hands moving along the inside of your belly.

34 weeks pregnant: what moms need to know

Your baby's legs are often bent to the body, so you will feel that your baby is less active

3. Symptoms in the 34th week of pregnancy

With your baby's weight gain and development, it's no surprise that you feel more stressed and burdened. Most mothers at 34 weeks may experience symptoms such as:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Frequent urination
  • Tired
  • Sciatica
  • Short of breath
  • Heartburn and indigestion
  • Braxton Hicks contractions
  • Back and hip pain
  • Swollen feet and ankles
  • Constipation

These uncomfortable symptoms will likely continue until you go into labor.

34 weeks pregnant: what moms need to know

At 34 weeks, you may have a feeling of swelling and heaviness in your legs

4. Things to do

4.1 Try to rest as much as possible

Perhaps during this period you need a break to deal with the difficulties and challenges of pregnancy. Try to nap during the day if possible. When you wake up, you should move slowly and comfortably. Your blood will likely tend to accumulate in your extremities when sitting or lying down. If you change positions too quickly, this can make you feel lightheaded or even faint.

4.2 Heartburn relief

Heartburn and indigestion may be more likely due to your growing uterus, which is pressing on your stomach and surrounding internal organs. Therefore, be aware of foods that can aggravate heartburn. You can split the meal she eats slowly.

As your baby moves down into the lower part of the uterus, you may feel less heartburn, due to less pressure on your stomach. However, as your baby moves downwards, it can increase pressure on your bladder and make you urinate more often.

4.3 Testing for Group B Streptococcus

You should also schedule a screening test for group B streptococcus (GBS). GBS is found in 25% of adult women. GBS is usually found in the vagina or rectum. It can be passed to the baby at birth. GBS is uncommon in babies, but you should be checked anyway, usually after 34 weeks.

4.4 Things to note

This is a good time to start getting familiar with what the birthing process is like. Also, learn about obstetric emergency places in case they are needed. Childbirth is unpredictable. Therefore, being prepared for any eventuality will help relieve stress for you and your loved ones in case things don't go as planned.

5. Signs of Premature Birth

Preterm birth is considered when born before 38 weeks. During these weeks, you should watch out for signs of premature birth because if your baby is born too early, he or she may not be fully developed and is at high risk of serious health problems. Some signs of premature birth include:

  • Mild abdominal cramping with or without diarrhea
  • Increase vaginal discharge
  • Changes in vaginal discharge such as more watery discharge, blood and or more of this substance
  • Have contractions that are more frequent
  • Constant and dull pain in the lower back area

6. When to call the doctor

If you start to feel contractions, you should call your doctor for advice or visit if needed. Giving birth at this time can be considered premature. At 34 weeks, your baby has a very good chance of having a healthy delivery. If you feel contractions, keep track of how long each muscle contraction lasts and how many minutes apart each contraction is. Your doctor will need this information very much.

If you experience vaginal bleeding or leakage, severe pelvic pain, or severe headache, you should also see your doctor for an examination and advice. Doctors will want you to wait until week 40 to give birth, to make sure your baby's lungs are working properly and he can breathe on his own after birth.

Pregnancy is a sacred duty of a mother. During your pregnancy, you will likely encounter many difficulties and challenges that need to be overcome. The above information is for reference only. If you have any questions, please consult your doctor for further advice.

Doctor Nguyen Dao Uyen Trang