Your baby is the size of a honeydew melon

35 Weeks Pregnant: Your Baby’s Development

Your little one is getting chubbier by the week. The layer of fat developing under your foetus’s skin as he or she puts on weight will make it easier for your baby to stay at the right temperature after being born.

If you’re expecting a boy, his testicles will be moving down from his abdomen into the scrotum around this time.

Things may be getting a bit cramped in there, but even at 35 weeks pregnant you’ll still be able to feel your little one shifting around. You may even see movements on the surface of your bump.

Feeling movement should last right up until your baby is born. Being aware of when and how your little one usually moves is a great way of detecting any possible infections or other problems as early as possible.

This is why, if you notice any reduction or change in those movements, it’s important to call your midwife or doctor straight away (any time of day or night).

Every pregnancy and foetus is different, so there’s no set number of movements you should be feeling at a given time.

At 35 weeks pregnant you’re probably familiar with the patterns of movement inside your belly, but if you’re unsure, a kick counting app or chart can provide you with a rough point of reference.

If you do this, keep in mind that your little one has quieter and more active periods, and even takes little naps on occasion, so getting to know these patterns is just as important as knowing the average number of movements you feel every day.

In some cases, your doctor may recommend you count kicks, and will explain how he or she would prefer you do this. Never try to self-diagnose your foetus’s health. If you have any concerns, always check with your doctor or midwife.


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The Size of the Foetus at 35 Weeks Pregnant

Now that you’re 35 weeks pregnant, your foetus is about the size of a honeydew melon, measuring about 46.2 centimetres from head to heel, and weighing in at around 2.4 kilograms (5.3 pounds).

It’s natural to wonder how exactly your growing little one is positioned inside your belly. Although the below is just a general illustration, it might help you get a rough idea of what your little one might look like and how your baby may be positioned at 35 weeks.

35 weeks pregnant

Mum’s Body at 35 Weeks Pregnant

If you’re having trouble figuring out how many months pregnant you are at 35 weeks, you’re not alone. Weeks don’t fit neatly into months, so this can be a tricky calculation at the best of times.

At a rough estimate though, you’re probably about halfway through month eight of your pregnancy.

In terms of how many weeks you’ve got left, at 35 weeks pregnant there are 5 weeks to go until your due date at 40 weeks pregnant.

Each mum-to-be has a unique experience of pregnancy, but you may find that time seems to pass more slowly in this last period. This could be especially so if you’re starting to experience some extra symptoms at 35 weeks pregnant or tiredness as your little one continues to put on weight.

But be patient: The more time your foetus has to grow and develop inside your uterus between now and your due date, the better. Before you know it, you’ll be cradling your newborn baby in your arms, and all that waiting will have been worth it.

Keep in mind, your due date is only a rough estimate and no two pregnancies are the same, so at 35 weeks pregnant it’s worth getting to know the signs of premature labour just in case.

This is especially important if you’re pregnant with twins or triplets, as multiples are more likely to be born a bit earlier than single babies.

The average delivery date for twins is 37 weeks pregnant, and for triplets it’s 33 weeks.

Keep in mind that all these estimates are just average figures, and the actual date of delivery varies a lot between individual pregnancies.

If you are pregnant with twins or triplets your doctor and midwife will be monitoring you and your little ones very closely at 35 weeks pregnant, so even if you do give birth earlier than expected, you can count on getting the best possible care and support.

If you do notice any possible signs of labour, let your midwife or doctor know as soon as possible.

Signs of labour could include period-like pains or cramping, regular contractions, an unusual backache or even diarrhoea. Another sign that you may soon go into labour is a ‘show’. This is when the mucus plug sealing your cervix becomes detached and leaves your body through the vagina.

35 Weeks Pregnant: Your Symptoms

Here are some of the symptoms you may be experiencing at 35 weeks pregnant:

  • Lower back pain. At 35 weeks pregnant your growing bump is changing your centre of gravity. The ligaments in your back and pelvis can also be softened by the release of a pregnancy-related hormone called relaxin. All this puts more strain on your back muscles. It might help to avoid back pain by keeping up good posture habits – sit and stand with a straight back, avoid twisting your spine when turning, and bend at the knees when picking things up off the floor. Get plenty of rest and make sure your back is well supported when you sit down for any length of time.

  • Trouble sleeping. At 35 weeks pregnant you might find that your ever-expanding bump is another thing (besides all those trips to the toilet) getting between you and a good night’s sleep. Lying on your side and supporting your bump with some pillows, and putting another pillow or cushion between your legs, is a good way of getting comfortable. If you’re having trouble dropping off it’s best to avoid drinks with caffeine in them, like coffee and cola. Trying relaxation techniques or pregnancy yoga might also help you relax before bedtime. Your midwife might know about classes for both in your area.

  • Swollen legs, ankles and feet. At around 35 weeks pregnant, your growing uterus may be putting pressure on the blood flow to your legs, leading to a build-up of fluid in your ankles, feet and legs. To avoid or ease this, don’t stand for long periods of time, and rest with your feet elevated whenever you can. Comfortable shoes and socks are a must – you might prefer to keep anything that pinches or has tight straps in the wardrobe for now. It’s also important to drink plenty of fluids. Gentle exercise that works the legs, like walking, can also help. Alternatively, just get your feet moving at regular intervals with this simple exercise: end and stretch both feet up and down up to 30 times, then rotate each foot in a circle 8 times in both directions. You can do this whether standing or sitting down.

  • Heartburn. Your growing foetus may still be pushing up against your stomach at 35 weeks pregnant, making it harder for you to digest as much food in one sitting. This can give you indigestion and heartburn. Eating smaller meals more frequently can help here, and it’s best to avoid rich, fatty or spicy foods for now. Lying down soon after eating can also make things worse, so have your last meal of the day a couple of hours before going to bed. The good news is that sometime soon, if it hasn’t already happened, your little one may move further down into your pelvis, taking some of the pressure of your stomach. Keep in mind that there’s no way of telling when this will happen, though. There’s also a chance it may not occur until just before labour, especially if this is not your first pregnancy.

35 Weeks Pregnant: Things to Consider

  • You may have another antenatal appointment coming up in around a week’s time, at 36 weeks. From 34 weeks pregnant, these check-ups are usually scheduled every 2 weeks until the end of week 40. At the 36-week appointment, your midwife or doctor will usually measure your uterus and check your little one’s position. Your blood pressure will also be taken, and you’ll usually have a sample of urine tested for protein. This is to screen for early warning signs of pre-eclampsia, a blood pressure related complaint that is rare, but could be dangerous if it isn’t detected in time.

  • If your foetus is still in the breech position (with the bottom or feet facing downwards) at your 36-week antenatal appointment, you may be offered external cephalic version (ECV). This is where the midwife or doctor tries to turn your little one’s head down by gently applying pressure to your bump. It works about 50 percent of the time. Medication may also be given to relax the muscles in your abdomen, which can improve the chances of success. If your foetus doesn’t turn head-down as your due date nears, your midwife or doctor will explain all your options.

  • Besides the medical tests, at your 36-week antenatal appointment you’ll probably be given information about feeding and caring for your newborn baby after the birth. Just as importantly, your doctor and midwife may talk to you about your own health and wellbeing after your baby is born. This is a good opportunity to discuss any worries you might have and find out more about how to recognise and deal with issues such as postnatal depression, for example.

  • If you’re planning to give birth vaginally, it’s never too early to start researching the various positions you’d like to try during labour and childbirth. Some of these don’t need much in the way of ‘props’ – often just a chair or stool is enough – but others might need special equipment like a pool or birthing ball. Ask your maternity unit what special items they may have available for you. It’s worth keeping in mind that whatever you decide now, you’ll be able to change your mind at any time during the birth. The important thing right now is to know what your options are.

  • With just weeks to go until the birth of your baby, this might be your last chance to enjoy some ‘me time’ for some time. Use this opportunity to enjoy doing whatever it is that will help you feel positive and rejuvenated. It could be having some time to yourself, a special date night with your partner or catching up with friends.

  • If you haven’t already, take the time now to find a paediatrician for your little one. Ask your doctor or midwife for a recommendation. Other parents in your area may also be able to recommend one.

35 Weeks Pregnant: Ask Your Doctor

  • What are your pain relief options during labour?

  • If you have inverted nipples, will you be able to breastfeed?

  • Are there any reasons you might need to have a caesarean section? If you do have one, what exactly will happen?

  • Would a photographer or videographer be allowed in with you during labour and delivery?

  • What is likely to happen during your hospital stay after your baby is born? How long can you expect the hospital stay to be?

35 Weeks Pregnant: Your Checklist

  • Prep for your postpartum care by stocking up on sanitary pads if you’re having a vaginal birth. Read more about the postpartum bleeding called lochia to find out about how to prepare and what to expect. If you’re having a caesarean, ask your doctor what supplies you should have at home so you can care for the incision in the weeks after you give birth.

  • If you’ve just had a baby shower, sit down with your feet up and start writing those thank you notes, emails or messages.

  • Ask your midwife or doctor if they can recommend a lactation consultant.

  • If you’ve been to childbirth classes, look back over your notes or handouts, and practice your breathing techniques. If you attended the classes with a partner, going over what you’ve learned together can be an enjoyable bonding experience.

  • Unbox and assemble any baby gear you already have. Wash and sanitize all of the items your little one will come into contact with. Take stock of what you already have and what you still need to get.

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How we wrote this article
The information in this article is based on the expert advice found in trusted medical and government sources, such as the National Health Service (NHS). The content on this page should not replace professional medical advice. Always consult medical professionals for full diagnosis and treatment.