Your baby is now the size of a durian fruit in weight, measuring between eighteen (18) and nineteen (19) inches from head to heel and weighing about four (4) pounds. You are in your eighth month of pregnancy.
During week 33 of pregnancy, your baby begins to transition from a wrinkled alien to a plump newborn in looks. As the liver begins storing iron, your baby’s skin changes from red to more pink. Even babies who will eventually have dark skin as adults are often born with pink, pale, ruddy red, or brownish skin because melanin, the pigment that dictates skin color, is not often present at birth. The bones continue to harden, but the bones in the skull remain unfused to allow the head to mold and fit through the narrow birth canal. Your baby will continue to gain about half a pound each week and will grow and inch or two between week 33 of pregnancy and birth. In preparation for birth, your baby assumes the fetal position with the knees bent, the chin resting on the chest, and the arms and legs crossed. Antibodies pass from you to your baby as your baby’s immune system continues to develop.
Not only do your feet hurt and your back aches, but you might also begin experiencing achiness or numbness in your fingers, wrists, and hands around week 33 of pregnancy. As your blood volume increases and your body retains fluids, increased pressure on the carpel tunnel in your wrists can cause numbness, tingling, shooting or burning pain, or a dull ache in your wrists. You may also be suffering from headaches, which are often brought on by the insomnia that many expectant women experience during the third trimester. Being more tired can also make your more forgetful than usual. Just try to remember that you are not alone if you find yourself struggling with mommy brain.
During week 33 of pregnancy, your uterus rests a little over five inches above your belly button. You should have gained between twenty-two and twenty-eight pounds and will continue to gain about a pound a week until you give birth. Keep in mind, though, that half a pound of that weight gain goes directly to your growing baby. As your belly protrudes more, your center of balance will be shifting as well, so you may find yourself strutting with a signature pregnancy waddle. Your new shape may make you clumsier than usual, so just try to be careful if you find yourself bumping or banging into anything and everything. Be aware of the signs of premature labor, but also know that most pregnant women experience Braxton Hicks contractions during the third trimester. Other symptoms during week 33 of pregnancy include more frequent urination, heartburn, indigestion, bloating, flatulence, constipation, leg cramps, varicose veins, hemorrhoids, stretch marks, lower abdominal achiness, difficulty sleeping, shortness of breath, and a protruding belly button.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is not meant to replace the professional medical advice of your health care provider.
33 weeks pregnant: http://www.babyzone.com/pregnancy-week-by-week/33-weeks-pregnant_70883
Curtis, Glade B. & Judith Schuler. 2011. Your pregnancy week by week. 7th edn. Philadelphia: Running Press.
Stone, Joanne & Keith Eddleman, eds. 2003. The pregnancy bible: Your complete guide to pregnancy and early parenthood. Willowdale, Ontario: Firefly Books.
Your pregnancy: 33 weeks: http://www.babycenter.com/6_your-pregnancy-33-weeks_1122.bc
Your pregnancy week by week: Weeks 31-34: http://www.webmd.com/baby/guide/your-pregnancy-week-by-week-weeks-31-34
Baby Bump at 33 Weeks: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sheila_33_weeks.jpg
Durian Fruit: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Durianfruits_in_Taiwan_-_Summer_2007.jpg