Size of Fetus at Nine Months:
Braxton Hicks Contractions
Braxton Hicks contractions are a series of contractions that occur just before “real” labor begins. According to the American Pregnancy Association, these contractions may begin as early as the second trimester, but are most common during the third trimester.1
“Real” labor and the “false” labor associated with Braxton Hicks contractions are contrasted below, according to the timing of each type of contraction:
Braxton Hicks contractions are often triggered by your baby’s movement inside of your uterus, intercourse, physical activity, and dehydration.
Call your healthcare provider if you experience any, or all, of the following:
Focus On: Breastfeeding
Thinking of breastfeeding your baby? The following information may provide insight on the benefits of breastfeeding over the bottle.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) says that breastfeeding “provides an infant with essential calories, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients for optimal growth, health, and development.”4
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) agrees, “Breast milk has the perfect combination of proteins, fats, vitamins, and carbohydrates.” The AAP adds that, “Leukocytes are living cells that are only found in breast milk. They help fight infection. It is the antibodies, living cells, enzymes, and hormones that make breast milk ideal. These cannot be added
There are significant benefits for you as well. The U.S. Surgeon General adds that mothers who breastfeed may maintain a healthy weight if they breastfeed for six months and may decrease their risks of developing breast and ovarian cancers.6
Normal to Experience:
Experiencing insomnia during your ninth month of pregnancy is normal. During this last month, a good night’s sleep can get disrupted for a number of reasons, including fluctuating hormones, back pain, restless leg syndrome, anxiety, indigestion, hunger pangs, and nausea. At this time, insomnia may also arise due to the constant pressure placed on your bladder from your baby’s weight. This pressure can cause you to wake up at all hours of the night with a persistent urge to go to the bathroom.
The following suggestions from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) may help ease you into a good night’s sleep7:
Watch Out for:
Is it time, or just Braxton Hicks contractions? Following are five signs the Mayo Clinic recommends that you look out for:
This information is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always consult your healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for your own situation.