If you’re 35 weeks pregnant, you’re almost at the end of your pregnancy. You may be dealing with a variety of physical and emotional symptoms, such as Braxton Hicks “contractions,” fatigue, and anxiety over your upcoming labor and delivery. All of this is normal at 35 weeks pregnant. Your baby is continuing to grow and develop, and your healthcare provider will be monitoring your baby's position in the uterus at your weekly checkups. Keep reading for an overview of 35 weeks pregnant.
Highlights at 35 Weeks Pregnant
Excitement builds as you get nearer to meeting your little one! Here's what's going this week:
Your little one is about the size of a honeydew melon at 35 weeks pregnant.
Your baby is still gaining weight and will continue to do so until they’re full term. The fat they develop will keep them warm once they’re born.
If you feel extra pressure in your lower body at 35 weeks, your baby may be starting to move down into a deeper position in your pelvis.
Now might be a good time to consider pain relief options during labor and also to try out different positions to use during labor and childbirth.
Have you decided on a name or created a short list of options for your little one? If you’re still searching, check out our Baby Name Generator for inspiration:
35 Weeks Pregnant: Your Baby’s Development
As you get closer to your due date, your baby continues to get ready for the big world outside your uterus. Here are some of the exciting developments they’re making this week:
When you are 35 weeks pregnant, your baby’s arms and legs are growing chubbier, and their skin is becoming pink and smooth. They’re getting ready for your cuddles!
Vernix, a coating on your baby’s skin that protects it from the amniotic fluid, continues to become thicker than in previous weeks. However, the fine hair called lanugo that once covered your baby's body is almost gone around this time.
Your little one’s lungs continue to develop and are producing surfactant, a substance that helps your baby’s lungs function properly.
Your baby’s brain and nervous system are still developing. At this time, that little brain weighs about two-thirds of what your baby will weigh at 39 or 40 weeks, when they’re considered full term.
At 35 weeks or in the next couple of weeks, your baby might shift into a head-down position in preparation for birth.
If you’re 35 weeks pregnant with twins or other multiples, it’s a good idea to know the signs and symptoms of preterm labor because, with twins, there is about a 50 percent greater chance of going into preterm labor than there is with a single baby. And, there’s about a 90 percent greater chance of going into preterm labor if you are pregnant with triplets.
Some signs and symptoms of preterm labor to look out for at 35 weeks pregnant include period-like cramps, lower backaches, diarrhea, and increased vaginal discharge. Contact your healthcare provider right away if you notice any of the signs of preterm labor.
How Many Months Is 35 Weeks Pregnant?
What is 35 weeks in months? The 40 weeks of pregnancy don’t fit neatly into months; however, at 35 weeks, you’re generally considered to be at the end of your eighth month.
Baby's Size at 35 Weeks Pregnant
You're probably wondering how big your baby is at 35 weeks. Well, when you're 35 weeks pregnant, your little one is about the size of a honeydew melon and is adding about half a pound a week.
Your Baby: What Does 35 Weeks Pregnant Look Like?
It’s natural to wonder what's going on inside your belly. The illustration below offers a rough idea of what your little one might look like and how your baby may be positioned at 35 weeks.
Your Body at 35 Weeks Pregnant
Are you wondering how many weeks of pregnancy you have left? At 35 weeks, you have about 4 or 5 weeks to go until your pregnancy is considered full term. A pregnancy is considered full term from the start of 39 weeks to the end of 40 weeks. You’re getting closer to the big day!
As you near your due date, you might be curious about the possibility of needing a cesarean delivery. This is when a baby is delivered through incisions in the mother’s abdomen.
Although most babies are born vaginally, cesarean deliveries aren’t uncommon. There are some conditions for which a cesarean delivery may be considered a safer choice than a vaginal delivery for either you or your baby.
One is when labor either slows down or stops. This can occur, for example, if contractions are too weak or infrequent to dilate the cervix enough for the baby to pass through. Another condition would be an abnormal heart rate for the baby, or a pinched or compressed umbilical cord, which may prevent the baby from getting enough oxygen.
A scheduled cesarean delivery may be recommended by your healthcare provider before you go into labor.
Some of the reasons a planned cesarean delivery may be advised include:
Your baby is in breech presentation or in an abnormal position
You have placenta previa, a condition in which the placenta blocks the baby from safely exiting the uterus
Your baby is potentially too large to pass through your pelvis and vagina
You’ve had a previous cesarean section, which may mean having another cesarean section is safer. Keep in mind that vaginal birth after a cesarean (VBAC) is often possible. Read more about VBAC.
During an appointment with your healthcare provider around 35 weeks, you can certainly ask about the chances of needing a cesarean section or what to expect if you end up having one.
35 Weeks Pregnant: Your Symptoms
At 35 weeks pregnant, here are some of the symptoms you may be experiencing:
Frequent urination. One of the signs and symptoms of your baby dropping lower into your pelvis in preparation for birth around 35 weeks pregnant is that you may leak a bit of urine when you laugh, cough, or sneeze, or even just when you bend over. This can happen because your baby is now pressing on your bladder. And don’t be surprised if you feel like peeing every 5 minutes at 35 weeks pregnant or around this time! One way to manage this is to go to the bathroom more often and wear a panty liner. Another way to help prevent those “oops” moments is to do Kegel exercises regularly to help strengthen the muscles in the area surrounding the opening of the vagina. This may help improve your bladder control by enabling you to clench those muscles more tightly if needed! Learn more about how to do Kegel exercises and their great benefits.
Trouble sleeping. It’s not unusual to experience insomnia at 35 weeks pregnant and in the last few weeks of pregnancy because finding a comfortable sleeping position to accommodate your baby belly is difficult! It might help to make your bedroom as comfortable as you can. Try sleeping on your side with pillows between your knees, and experiment with pillows to see how they might give you the best support. Or take over the recliner in the living room if that’s more comfortable! Whatever it takes, rest whenever you can, even if it means sneaking in some daytime naps.
Leg swelling and pain. The majority of pregnant people experience swelling in their legs and feet. Swelling might occur because your body retains more fluid when you’re pregnant. What’s more, your uterus puts pressure on your veins, which impairs the return of blood to your heart and causes swelling. Changes in hormone levels also trigger swelling. To help reduce swelling, try to avoid standing for long periods and don't wear tight shoes or tight clothing. Prop up your legs on a footrest or pillows when you're sitting and wear loose clothing and supportive shoes.
Numbness in hands and feet. Sometimes swelling in your body presses on nerves and can cause numbness or tingling in your hands and feet. Don’t hesitate to mention this to your healthcare provider if it bothers you often or causes pain. Wrist splints might help reduce the tingling in your hands. Resting in positions that take the pressure off your hands and feet, such as propping up your arms and legs on pillows, could help. The good news is that the numbness and tingling typically go away after you give birth and the swelling subsides.
Heartburn. A common symptom around 35 weeks and throughout pregnancy, heartburn feels like a burning sensation in your chest and throat. Hormones during pregnancy relax the valve between your stomach and esophagus. This allows stomach acid to come up into your esophagus, which, in turn, causes heartburn. To help prevent heartburn, try to avoid fried or spicy foods, citrus fruits, and chocolate. (Sorry about that chocolate part!) It might also help to eat small meals more frequently rather than getting overly full on large meals.
How Big Is a Pregnant Belly at 35 Weeks?
As your baby gains weight at 35 weeks and in their final few weeks, your uterus and belly may expand more, leading to some of the pregnancy discomforts we discussed above. In the next few weeks, your baby bump will finish expanding and your fundal height will reach its highest point.
What Does 35 Weeks Pregnant Look Like?
Here’s an idea of how your belly may look around 35 weeks of pregnancy.
35 Weeks Pregnant: Things to Consider
At this point, you’re probably readying yourself for that big arrival. Here are some things to consider and help you along at 35 weeks pregnant:
You’ve spent a lot of time with your baby as they grow inside your belly, and your bond will grow even stronger once you hold your little one in your arms. Keep in mind that bonding isn’t a one-time, dramatic event but is something that develops slowly over time as you get to know your new child. This connection may not feel as strong as you had expected immediately after your baby is born. You have a lot on your mind, and adjusting to parenthood isn’t always easy. In time, forming a close and loving relationship with your baby will help build your little one’s sense of security and will make you want to protect them and surround them with love and affection. If you have questions about how you’re feeling, either now or after the birth of your baby, chat with your healthcare provider and trusted loved ones.
At this phase in your pregnancy, you’re probably having healthcare appointments every other week. If you have a checkup at 35 weeks, your healthcare provider will check the usual things, and sometime between 36 and 38 weeks, your provider may also test you for the group B streptococcus (GBS) bacterium. GBS is usually harmless to adults but can cause illness in a small number of newborn babies if they get infected during delivery. To test you for GBS, your provider will use a swab to take samples from your vagina and rectum. If you test positive for GBS, you'll probably be given antibiotics during labor to decrease the chance of your baby becoming infected during delivery.
Preeclampsia is a serious high blood pressure disorder that can occur after week 20 of your pregnancy, such as in the third trimester, or after childbirth. Some of the signs of preeclampsia are a headache that won’t go away, changes in eyesight or seeing spots, difficulty breathing, or pain in the upper abdomen or shoulders. If you experience any of these signs or symptoms of preeclampsia at 35 weeks pregnant or at any time in your pregnancy, it’s best not to ignore them—contact your healthcare provider with your concerns.
If you’re planning to give birth vaginally, now is a good time to start thinking about the positions you might like to try during labor and childbirth. For some positions you only need a chair or stool. Others require extras like a birthing ball or pool. Ask your healthcare provider what will be available for you to use and whether anything needs to be reserved in advance. Take some time to think about your options and what you might prefer. Know that it’s OK to change your mind once you get to the birthing center or hospital, or even once labor is in full swing. The key at this stage is to know what your options are.
With just weeks to go until the birth of your baby, why not set aside and enjoy some “me time,” doing whatever it is that will help you feel positive and rejuvenated. It could be spending a few hours alone, or going on a special date with your partner, or catching up with friends.
If you haven’t already, take the time now to find a healthcare provider, such as a pediatrician, for your little one. Ask your own provider for advice on how to go about finding a good pediatrician. Other parents in your area may also be able to recommend one.
35 Weeks Pregnant: Questions for Your Healthcare Provider
More and more questions may pop up as your due date draws near. Here are some you may have for healthcare provider around 35 weeks pregnant:
What are my pain relief options during labor?
Can I still breastfeed if I have inverted nipples?
If you’re having “oops” moments where a little urine comes out when you cough, sneeze, or even laugh, you might like to ask: When I go to the bathroom, are there ways I can sit to help fully empty my bladder to reduce the chance of leakage?
What are some symptoms not to ignore at 35 weeks pregnant?
Will I have an ultrasound scan at 35 weeks pregnant?
Under what circumstances might I need a cesarean delivery? If I do need one, what should I expect?
Would a photographer or videographer be allowed in with me during labor and delivery?
What is likely to happen during my hospital stay after my baby is born? How long can I expect the hospital stay to be?
35 Weeks Pregnant: Your Checklist
Check out our simple checklist for 35 weeks pregnant:
☐ Prep for postpartum care by stocking up on sanitary pads if you’re having a vaginal birth, or, in the case of a cesarean delivery, plenty of incision dressings such as gauze pads. Your healthcare provider can tell you exactly what you’ll need. Read more about postpartum care and healing to find out about how to prepare and what to expect.
☐ Prop up your feet, relax in your favorite comfortable chair, and write those baby shower thank-you notes!
☐ Find out if your healthcare provider, hospital, or birth center can help you with a lactation consultant.
☐ If you took a childbirth class, review your notes and practice your breathing techniques. If you have a little time, you might even like to check out our nine-part childbirth classes.
☐ Unbox and assemble any baby gear you already have. Wash and sanitize all of the items your little one will come into contact with.
☐ As your due date nears, you may be thinking about baby gear items you still need to get before your baby’s arrival. Check out our compilations of the best baby products as voted and reviewed by thousands of Pampers Parents. Don’t forget those smaller essentials like the best baby bathtubs and the best diaper rash creams.