42 Weeks Pregnant
- July 15, 2021
- by Melissa Lawrence
Hey there, moms and dads-to-be! Welcome to week 42 of your pregnancy. If you’re reading this, you’ve gone well past your due date and in all likelihood, will have your baby this week. I had my baby prematurely at 30 weeks, 12 weeks ago (wow) but I’ve been determined to stay by your side and finish this series with you all. You can learn about my premature baby Bracey in my Baby’s First Year series. You must be uncomfortable at this point but reassured by the fact that your baby has enjoyed plenty of time in utero to get prepared for the adventure that is life. Let’s dive into what undoubtedly will be the last week of your pregnancy as well as the last week of this series (sigh!).
42 Weeks Pregnant: Recurring Symptoms
42 Weeks Pregnant: Common Symptoms
Stalled weight gain
Since your baby pretty much wrapped up its development two weeks ago, you likely won’t be gaining much weight right now. You may even lose some weight, as your body begins to lose some of the amniotic fluid and excess fluids you have been holding on to.
Stages of Fetal Development: Baby Growth & Size at 42 Weeks
At week 42, your baby weighs 7 to 9 pounds and is 19 to 21 inches long, about the size of a jackfruit. At this point, your baby is acting a bit like a freeloader! They’ve finished growing and developing and are basically hanging out, gaining a little more weight and adding a few extra brain cells.
Babies born two weeks late often have long nails and hair, and are free of traces of lanugo. They might suffer from newborn skin peeling since vernix caseosa, the cheesy varnish we discussed previously, disappeared a few weeks ago, leaving your baby’s sensitive skin exposed to the amniotic fluid.
Fun Fact About Pregnancy
In 76% of breastfeeding women (including me), the right breast produces more milk!
Your Body After Birth: Postpartum Essentials & Recovery
After giving birth, your body will feel sore and in pain, and you’ll be completely exhausted. It takes a long time to recover from a pregnancy. Do not look in the mirror and judge how your body looks. Your pregnant belly will take several weeks to decrease in size — your uterus takes 6 weeks to “deflate” — and you may experience perineum pain. Eat enough healthy calories each day, especially if you’re breastfeeding, and drink a lot of water and healthy fluids. Breastfeeding in most cases helps women lose weight as it burns off calories and shrinks the uterus, which is why many women experience cramps while nursing. Here’s a quick guide as to what to expect with your body postpartum:
Your Pregnancy at 42 Weeks: Prenatal Appointments
If your baby still has not been delivered and you have not had contractions, your doctor may recommend that your labor be induced. Complications can arise if your baby overstays their time in utero, so induction is typical at 42 weeks of pregnancy.
The following prenatal tests remain available at 42 weeks of pregnancy:
Week by Week Pregnancy Food Guide
Even though you’re at the end, you still need to pay careful attention to your diet and seek out certain foods while avoiding others. Check out Week 4 and Week 5 for a complete pregnancy food guide and check back in each week for a healthy pregnancy recipe.
Quick, Healthy Snack Tip
Homemade Granola Bars: Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan and combine with ⅓ cup honey and ⅓ cup brown sugar. Add in 2 cups of rolled oats, 1 cup of chopped nuts, 1 cup of dried fruit, and 2 tablespoons of wheat germ. Press into an 8×8 pan and bake for 30 minutes at 300 degrees. Let cool and cut into slices. (FoodNetwork)
Why Oats? Oats are a form of whole grain that is gluten free. Oats are considered to be one of the most healthy grains you can find! Whether in granola bars or in oatmeal, granola has a host of benefits,, including lowering your blood sugar and reducing your chances of getting heart disease. To top it off, oats are very nutritious, containing a good amount of copper, folate, magnesium, and phosphorus.
Is it 9 Months of Pregnancy or 10?
The typical pregnancy lasts for about 40 weeks, although some end before and others end after that mark. The math surrounding months is imprecise since months vary in length; and for that reason, doctors use weeks rather than months to assess a pregnancy’s duration. Since 40 weeks equals about 9 months, at 42 weeks you are still within your 9th month of pregnancy and headed towards your 10th!
Week 42 Pregnancy Checklist
- Relax and don’t stress about being late!
- Talk with your doctor about inducing labor
- Take long walks
- Try some natural ways of inducing labor
- Keep a lookout for the signs of labor!
- Invest in postpartum pads or witch hazel pads to combat postpartum bleeding (lochia)
- What to Expect & What to Expect When You’re Expecting – 5th Edition (2016)
- The Bump
- Baby List
- The Mama Natural Week to Week Guide to Pregnancy & Childbirth (2017)
- Mayo Clinic’s Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy – Second Edition (2018)
- American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists