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35 WEEKS EXACTLY

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ultrasound of human fetus at 35 weeks exactly

Your baby today

Your baby's brain continues to mature. This ultrasound image shows that the folding pattern overlying the cerebral hemispheres has now developed giving rise to the familiar folds and grooves on the brain's surface. The bright reflections are from the bony skull.

The reality of being a mother will begin to hit you in these final weeks, and you have everything to look forward to.

Before the birth, it can be difficult to imagine having a relationship with your baby, even though you may feel a close bond during pregnancy.

Fortunately, bonding is a chemical process in your brain when you give birth. Other people's babies may leave you feeling cold, but it's highly likely that your own baby will spark all kinds of feelings that you never even knew you could experience. It's normal to worry about being a mother-coping with the responsibility, taking care of a helpless baby, being "good enough," and making lifestyle changes. However, when your baby is born, your priorities will become abundantly clear, as will your affections-although bonding may not always be instant.

In some cases, postpartum depression, or even the short-term baby blues , can interrupt the natural progression of feelings a mother has for her newborn baby.

Ask A... Doctor

Will I be able to breast-feed my twins?

Yes, but if possible, arrange for a lactation consultant with experience in feeding twins to be available after birth. If you get the positions correct and know how to latch on your babies at the outset, you'll feel much more confident continuing on your own.

Many moms of twins find that feeding them simultaneously, using a specially designed breast-feeding pillow, is the easiest way to manage. This is something you may want to buy now. There is a variety of effective breast-feeding positions for twins that the consultant or a midwife can show you.

Pregnant woman exfoliating belly

If you're keeping a photographic record of your belly, you'll want it to look as good as possible. Gently exfoliating and moisturizing will ensure the skin is as smooth as possible. It won't, unfortunately, prevent stretch marks but it will improve the appearance of the skin.

Focus On... Your body

Pamper yourself

You may not feel particularly lovely, but that's all the more reason to pamper yourself. There's unlikely to be time for beauty rituals once the baby is born.

  • Treat yourself to a manicure, but don't have nail extensions for when your baby is born-sharp implements and babies don't mix.
  • Indulge in a facial: it will make you feel good and help you relax.
  • Have your hair cut since it may be some time before you get to the hairdresser again. It's a good idea to opt for a style that will be easy to manage once your baby arrives.
  • If you have aches and pains, book a massage with someone who specializes in pregnancy.
  • Have a pedicure a week or two before the birth. You'll be thrilled once your belly has gone and you're able to see your feet again.

excerpted from:

Excerpted from Pregnancy Day by Day.
Copyright © 2008 Dorling Kindersley Limited.
Buy this book now!

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