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What To Expect During Pregnancy Week 40

At pregnancy week 40, you and baby should be ready for their arrival into the world! 

Your Body

At pregnancy week 40, the Braxton Hicks contractions will start to become more frequent and eventually become labour contractions. When they do, you will usually notice a pattern to them, starting off spaced apart and gradually coming more frequently and more intense.

For some women, this is a long slow process and others a quicker one. Usually first time mothers have longer labours. At 40 weeks pregnant, some women experience a lot of lower back pain in labour due to baby’s head position.

When the contractions start changing the cervix, making it shorten and open, then labour has truly started. For some women the pre-labour pains can go on for quite a while as the cervix slowly responds to these pains.

Your Baby

At week 40, your baby is now over 41 cm long and weighs around 3400 grams.

Baby should be ready to make an appearance with all systems ready to adapt to the outside world.

Baby’s head should be well down and while most of the bones are formed and hard the bones of the skull are soft allowing for passage through the birth canal.

There are even two fontanelles on baby’s head to aid this, which are small gaps in the skull which will close over in the months after birth.

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