35 Weeks Pregnant
Ready as you’ll ever be! At 35 weeks, some moms-to-be feel like they have a ton of stuff left to do before baby’s arrival. Others can barely wait for baby to make their debut. Either way, try not to stress; baby will show up when they’re ready and won’t care if you haven’t checked every little detail off your list. As long as you’ve got a safe place for baby to sleep, some diapers and an infant car seat for the ride home, you’ve already got a bunch of baby’s basic needs taken care of.
At 35 weeks pregnant, baby is as big as a pineapple. Baby measures about 18.2 inches from head to heel. From here on out, they won't get much longer but will keep plumping up. Your 35-week fetus now weighs about 5.3 pounds, and will put on a pound or more of baby fat before you meet them.
Thirty-five weeks pregnant is eight months pregnant, although doctors refer to your stage in pregnancy by week, not month. Just about five more weeks left!
As you wrap up your eighth month, you’re probably feeling some of these 35 weeks pregnant symptoms:
- Frequent urge to pee. Yup, your bladder is being pressed on by baby (or babies, if you’re 35 weeks pregnant with twins), who’s likely sitting pretty low in your pelvis, getting ready for birth. Don’t let the extra trips to the bathroom deter you from drinking lots of water, though—dehydration puts you at risk for preterm labor, so drink up.
- Constipation. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Make sure to get plenty of fiber in your diet. If you’ve tried everything and are still struggling with constipation, ask your doctor if it’s okay for you to take a fiber supplement or a stool softener.
- Aches and pains in the hips and pelvis. These ouchies are continuing—and you may even be feeling a few new ones. While you’re dealing with discomfort, look on the bright side: It’s a sign your body is getting ready to deliver your baby. Yep, all of this pain actually has a purpose! Your ligaments are loosening so that baby can make their way out of your uterus and into the world.
- Braxton Hicks contractions. At 35 weeks pregnant, you may have noticed an increase in the number of contractions you're having. It’s kind of crazy how hard your belly can get! Just keep an eye on those contractions; rest when you get them and drink lots of water.
Is it normal to be really tired at 35 weeks pregnant?
You are definitely not alone in feeling fatigued at 35 weeks! Your body’s aches and pains, your bursting bladder and your very active baby all make insomnia a very real possibility at this stage of your pregnancy. You may also be experiencing symptoms such as leg cramps or heartburn that can prevent you from sleeping soundly. Just try to get all the rest you can now—in a few weeks, it will be much harder to sleep with a new baby to love and care for!
Growing, growing, growing. Yup, baby and you. Now that you’ve reached 35 weeks pregnant, your uterus has grown to about 500 to 1,000 times its original size, a number that might sound exaggerated to everyone else—but to you, it probably feels more like a million. You can expect to gain about a half-pound each week until you give birth.
When you’re 35 weeks pregnant, it’s a good idea to review the signs of labor. You may think this is early, but about 11 percent of singleton moms give birth prematurely, while moms who are 35 weeks pregnant with twins are close to being considered full term at this point.
This is not a drill! Here are signs of actual, call-the-OB-and-grab-your-hospital-bag labor:
- Water breaking. You’ll know your water has broken if you experience something that’s less like discharge and more like a flow of water. It can happen in a big gush (like in the movies) or in a slow trickle that just keeps coming.
- Painful contractions. Those Braxton Hicks have nothing on real contractions. If you’re suddenly feeling pain in your 35 weeks pregnant belly or back instead of some mild tightness, it could be time.
- Regular contractions. True contractions happen regularly and don’t stop—they get more frequent, and more painful. Your doctor will probably tell you at what point to call and let them know about your contractions. A good rule of thumb is to call when contractions are about five minutes apart for a first pregnancy. If it’s not your first, call earlier—more like when they’re 10 to 15 minutes apart—because those labors tend to be much shorter.
Unsure if any 35 weeks pregnant symptom could be a sign of labor? Always call the doctor just to be safe.
Baby’s hearing is now fully developed, and your 35-week fetus responds best to high-pitched noises. If you’re pregnant with a boy, you would see on a 35 weeks pregnant ultrasound that his testes have probably fully descended. (Bet you hadn’t thought about that one!)
This week or next, you may have a Group B strep test. For it, your doctor will take a swap of your vaginal area and rectum and have it tested for bacteria called Group B Strep. This bacteria is common and isn’t going to make you sick, but it could be harmful to baby if they’re exposed to it at birth, so knowing whether you have it is important. If you do, you’ll be given antibiotics during the birth to prevent exposure, and that’s that. Easy peasy.
Yes! While it’s still a couple more weeks until baby reaches “early term” at 37 weeks, they can still be born now and be just as healthy in the long run as one born later. Don’t be surprised if your doctor wants to extend baby’s hospital stay a bit just to make sure all is well.
Pack your hospital bag
If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to prepare for delivery. There are things you’ll need (insurance information, photo ID) and there are things that you’ll want (socks, comfortable clothes for the trip home). Here’s a checklist if you need ideas for what to pack.
Use your pregnancy pillow
At the 35-week mark, this pillow has probably been a lifesaver for you. It helps you maintain that ideal left-side sleeping position, and it also relieves pressure on your hips while you’re lying in bed.
Watch your water intake before bed
There’s not a whole lot you can do about your frequent trips to the bathroom—it’s just part of being 35 weeks pregnant. Up all night? Limit how much water you drink in the hour or two before you go to bed to reduce the number of middle-of-the-night wake ups.
Eat more salads
They’re a great way to get more fiber in your diet to prevent constipation. Start with spinach or kale, add some lentils or roasted chickpeas (or go fruit-forward with pears, berries or apples) and top with sesame seeds or chopped almonds—they’re all tasty fiber-rich foods.
Reminders for the week:
Medical content was reviewed November 2020 by Sherry A. Ross, MD, an ob-gyn and women’s health expert at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California, and author of she-ology and she-ology, the she-quel: let’s continue the conversation.