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31 Weeks Pregnant

By 31 weeks pregnancy, you might notice the muscles in your uterus tightening now and many women feel these random contractions — called Braxton Hicks contractions. Often lasting about 30 seconds, they’re irregular, and at this point, they should be infrequent and painless. Frequent contractions, on the other hand — even those that don’t hurt — may be a sign of preterm labor. Call your practitioner immediately if you have more than four contractions in an hour or any other signs of preterm labor: an increase in vaginal discharge or a change in the type of discharge (if it becomes watery, mucus-like, or bloody — even if it’s pink or just tinged with blood); abdominal pain or menstrual-like cramping; an increase in pressure in the pelvic area; or low back pain, especially if you didn’t have it before.

You may have noticed some leaking of colostrum, or “premilk,” from your breasts lately. If so, try tucking some nursing pads into your bra to protect your clothes. (And if not, it’s certainly nothing to worry about; your breasts are making colostrum all the same, even if you don’t see any.) If your current bra is too snug, you might also want to pick up a nursing bra. Choose a nursing bra at least one cup size bigger than you need now. When your milk comes in you’ll be grateful for that extra room!

Your baby keeps gaining weight rapidly by week 31. Your baby now weighs almost 3.3 pounds and is about 16 inches long!

During 31 weeks pregnant, your baby is busy accumulating layers of fat under his skin as you continue your pregnancy week by week. The arms, legs, and body start to fill out and will look less wrinkly as each week progresses. Your baby may be finding the space in your womb tighter and tighter by 31 weeks pregnant. You may also feel more and more uncomfortable as your baby continues to grow and the space in your womb decreases.

Though your baby’s movements should continue to be strong, they will likely be less dramatic and sporadic at this point in your pregnancy. You may also see an arm slowly moving across your belly. You will probably start realizing just how strong your unborn baby is from here on out. Kicks and sudden movement changes may cause you to gasp unexpectedly, much to the delight and amazement of onlookers.

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