If you are a first time mother, your baby has probably dropped down into the pelvis by now. If she has not, she soon will. If your baby is in the head up position (breech), this could mean that you need a C section. Your physician will also evaluate other parameters of your pregnancy and your health to evaluate if there is any reason to either induce labor or perform a C section.

You have probably spoken to your doctor about any special requests you have – if not do it now. If you want to listen to music during your delivery, have your partner cut the umbilical cord, use a mirror during your delivery, etc. you should tell your doctor now. A pleasant birthing experience is thought to reduce chances of postnatal depression and can also help you bond with your baby in a better way.

Changes in the baby

By the 39th week, the only changes in baby are that she is growing bigger and doing everything she needs in order to function independently outside her protective cocoon.

  • Baby is now very much an individual in her own right. Babies can be very different; even siblings. While your first baby might be a ravenous feeding machine all trained to breastfeed, your second one may have to be literally taught how to suck – or vice versa!
  • Some babies may pass meconium in the amniotic fluid now or may be preparing for their first ever poop when they’ve emerged from their nine month home.

Changes in the mom to be

Your nutrition is very important during these final weeks; so make sure that you eat healthy, and drink plenty of water.

  • The mucus plug that sealed baby off from the outer world may get dislodged.
  • Other sign that the baby is just about to arrive is if your waters break.
  • However with your water breaking and your mucus plug gone, your labor may not have started and your doctor may have to take a call about induction. You should get informed about your options.

Tips for the 39th Week

There is some controversy about the episiotomy, a surgical procedure to cut the perineum. There is considerable debate about whether doctors should perform this surgical cut or whether it is better for a natural tear to occur. Many women will not tear.

  • Find out what your doctor’s views about episiotomies are.
  • If you have any wishes about this, you should speak to your doctor.