You at 9 months pregnant
Be prepared for the following situations in the days leading up to labor:
- You might not give birth on your due date. 95% of women don’t give birth exactly on their due date. Your baby could be born any time from 38 to 42 weeks.
- Your water could break any day now. If this happens, you will most likely feel liquid trickling down your leg, not a sudden splash of water on the floor. Don’t panic. Just get to a bathroom and call your partner and provider. This usually signals labor. However, you might not give birth for another 24 to 48 hours. It is a sign though that things are starting.
- You will go into labor. Somehow your body knows when it's time to give birth. It starts to release chemicals called prostaglandins that cause your cervix to dilate and your uterus to start contracting.
- Your contractions could be fast and strong following your water breaking. Or you may not have any contractions for a while. Every woman and each labor is different.
Your baby at 9 months pregnant
In the days leading up to birth, the umbilical cord will begin to transfer antibodies to your baby. The antibodies will help your baby build up immunity to many harmful bacteria and germs that are in the outside world.
Things to think about
It's very normal to experience feelings of disappointment and worry when things don’t go to plan. Do your best to go with the flow. The most important thing is that you and your baby make it through birth safely and in good health.
Know that drama you go through on the big day may eventually become a fond memory that you will one day share with your child.
If, however, you have problems accepting the type of labor and birth you had, speak with your pregnancy care provider. Some women need counseling after their baby's birth to help them come to terms with their experience.
The information of this article has been reviewed by nursing experts of the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric, & Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN). The content should not substitute medical advice from your personal healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider for recommendations/diagnosis or treatment. For more advice from AWHONN nurses, visit Healthy Mom&Baby at health4mom.org.