New movements and continued growth
Week 32: Your baby is growing bigger, but his movements could be getting smaller
Your baby is spending quite a bit of his time practicing the skills he'll need after birth, such as sucking, swallowing, and breathing. These subtle movements are harder to feel and often go undetected. Other changes during your 32nd week of pregnancy include the following:
- Your baby weighs about 4 pounds and is almost 11-1/2 inches long from crown to rump, or the length of a small watermelon.
- Lanugo, the soft, downy hair that insulates your baby, continues to fall off this week.
- You might notice a change in your baby's movements this week, as he becomes more crowded in your uterus.
- Kicks and movements might seem less powerful.
- Be sure you monitor your baby's movements from time to time, especially if you think you've noticed a decrease in activity.
- Your baby's skin is no longer see-through. It looks more like yours.
Your Week 32 nutrition and health
Snacking smart for balanced nutrition
When you're 32 weeks pregnant, you might find yourself eating less at one sitting and moving less in general.
If you find you can't eat a full-size meal all at once, thatís normal. Your uterus is enlarged and is pressing against your stomach, which can make eating more difficult. If you are not able to eat larger meals, opt for mini-meals throughout the day.
Just be sure you're getting nutrients from all five food groups (grains, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and protein). Hereís how:
- Try to choose food from at least two food groups for each snack or from at least three groups for mini-meals.
- Rotate through the food groups to hit on all of your needed nutrients.
How to choose a pediatrician
It's important to select a pediatrician before you go into labor, so he or she can be there at the hospital to examine your baby. If youíre not sure where to begin, ask your practitioner, friends, or neighbors who have children for their recommendations. Once youíve narrowed down the list, call or visit the pediatricianís office.
What to ask:
- Does the doctor accept your insurance plan?
- How large is the practice?
- Will your baby be seen by the same doctor at every visit?
- What are the office hours?
- What are the after-hours procedures?
- With which hospital does the doctor work?
Easy ways to reduce swelling
As you get closer to your delivery, you might experience swelling in different parts of your body. This is completely normal. Try these simple ways to help reduce swelling symptoms:
- Don't stand or sit for long without taking breaks. Try a brisk, brief walk to keep circulation and fluids moving.
- Elevate your legs when possible. Sleep with your feet propped on a pillow to keep fluids from pooling in your lower body.
- Lie on your side. Keep one or both knees bent. Use extra pillows if desired.
- Maintain regular exercise, but be sure to check with your doctor before trying any new exercises.
- Walking is ideal for swollen feet because it keeps the blood flowing.
- Swimming or water aerobics push fluid from your tissues to reduce swelling.
- If you swell suddenly or if the swelling is particularly bad, contact your doctor.