Your pregnancy and baby guide

You and your baby at 29-32 weeks pregnant

Your baby's development in pregnancy

Your baby continues to be very active at this stage, and you'll probably be aware of lots of movements. There's no set number of movements you should feel each day – every pregnancy is different.

You should be aware of your baby's own pattern of movements. If this pattern changes, contact your midwife or hospital to tell them.

The sucking reflex is developing by now and your baby can suck its thumb or fingers.

The baby is growing plumper, and the skin begins to look less wrinkled and much smoother.

The white, greasy vernix and the soft, furry lanugo (fine hair) that have covered your baby's skin for some time begin to disappear.

Your baby's eyes can focus now. The lungs are developing rapidly, but your baby wouldn't be fully able to breathe on its own until about 36 weeks.

By about 32 weeks, the baby is usually lying with their head pointing downwards, ready for birth. This is known as cephalic presentation. If your baby isn't lying head down at this stage, it's not a cause for concern – there's still time for them to turn.

The amount of amniotic fluid in your uterus is increasing, and your baby is still swallowing fluid and passing it out as urine.

Foetus at 29-32 weeks

Your body at 29-32 weeks of pregnancy

As your bump pushes up against your lungs and you have extra weight to carry around, you may feel breathless.

Leg cramps at night are common at around 29-32 weeks. You may find it hard to sleep because you can't get comfortable.

Try lying curled up on your side with a pillow between your legs and a cushion under your bump to see if it feels more comfortable. You might also find you need to pee a lot.

Read about more common pregnancy health problems.

If this is your first baby, your midwife or GP will measure the size of your womb and check which way up the baby is when you're 31 weeks pregnant.

They'll also measure your blood pressure, test your urine for protein, and discuss the results of any screening tests from your last appointment.

Find out about the stages of labour and signs labour has started.

Tips for pregnancy 29-32 weeks

Maternity leave

If you're taking maternity leave from work, you need to tell your employer in writing at least 15 weeks before your baby is due. This is when you're 25 weeks pregnant.

If your partner plans to take paternity leave (female partners can take paternity leave, too), they also need to inform their employer at this time.

Maternity Allowance

If you're entitled to, you can claim Maternity Allowance from when you're 26 weeks pregnant. GOV.UK has information about benefits for families.

Starting your birth plan

Think about your preferences for labour and birth, such as pain relief and the positions you'd like to be in. You can download a birth plan template to fill and and save, and also print out a blank version to fill in and discuss with your midwife.

You can print a to-do list to keep track of all the essentials for your pregnancy.

Pregnancy infections

Make sure you know about the infections to avoid in pregnancy and how to protect against them, including cytomegalovirus (CMV), slapped cheek syndrome and toxoplasmosis.

Use our visual guide to see how a baby develops during pregnancy

Warning signs during pregnancy

High blood pressure and pre-eclampsia

High blood pressure and protein in the urine are signs of pre-eclampsia, which can be life threatening if untreated.

Severe itching

Severe itching at any stage of pregnancy can be a sign of the rare liver disorder obstetric cholestasis.

Pregnancy week by week

Find out what's happening to you and your baby at:

0-8 weeks pregnant

9, 10, 11, 12 weeks pregnant

13, 14, 15, 16 weeks pregnant

17, 18, 19, 20 weeks pregnant

21, 22, 23, 24 weeks pregnant

25, 26, 27, 28 weeks pregnant

33, 34, 35, 36 weeks pregnant

37, 38, 39, 40 weeks pregnant

Over 40 weeks pregnant

Find maternity services near you

Media last reviewed: 1 Nov 2016

Media review due: 2 Nov 2019

Page last reviewed: 28/02/2017
Next review due: 28/02/2020