Do you know only 5% babies are born on their actual due date? In medical terms, 40 weeks pregnant, no signs of labor clearly indicates something is wrong, but not always and with every woman who completed 40 weeks gestation period. If the baby is unborn at the last gestation period, then there is a risk of being stillborn upon birth. 40 weeks of pregnancy means, your child is now the size of a watermelon.
Now let us get it real, you are nearing the of the normal gestation period. You need to get that labor signs so that you can enjoy the significant chapter of your life. Nevertheless, what will happen if you are not showing any labor on completion of 40-week pregnancy? It is a hard reality, which certainly pushes you to a complex mental trauma when you realize that your due date continues to change. Now let us check the facts hereunder, what will happen and how you can tide over the situation.
Is it that much worrisome experience if you are 40 weeks pregnant and no signs of labor?
Not really, as mentioned earlier, your pregnancy due date is calculated by adding 40 weeks from the first day of your last period. It is simply a prediction and might change which is normal. Most of the women experience long-term pregnancy, which lasts for more than 40 weeks. The third trimester is clearly from 37-42 weeks, and your pregnancy is not overdue until 42 weeks.
During the first week after your due date, if both you and your baby are doing quite well, there are no risks of complications. But as a couple of weeks pass by, there are chances that the placenta slowly loses its capacity to do the job properly. As your baby stays for a longer time, placenta might stop providing supply, which will put your child in distress.
Amniotic fluids also tend to drop during this time. It may lead to unwanted complications. After the 40-week mark, your midwife will be spending more time on monitoring the position of the baby. A long-term infant is at a risk of having high birth weight and glucose metabolism.
Getting through the waiting game
Meanwhile, your' babies weight will start to increase, and this puts pressure on the cervix tissues. Your child will have developed entirely with hairs growing and immune system strengthening and the baby start preparing to adjust to the new world. While you are anxious and under stress, because there are no signs of labor and due to the pressure there will be a lot of changes happen to your body.
Things that should happen to your body before the baby is born:
- Your cervix needs to soften/ripen and move back to the front.
- The cervix must thin out and dilate by a few centimeters.
- Your baby’s head must have molded.
- Baby must rotate and change its position to head down and chin tucked.
Now there are certain things you can do after 40 weeks of waiting for the labor pain to begin. Giving your body enough amount of exercise can help in inducing labor. You can start with walking or climbing stairs. Keep in mind that you do not need to exhaust yourself to experience the labor pain. Taking big steps during walk can put a slight pressure on your cervix, and it will help in the overall process.
Get yourself a good body massage which helps in releasing oxytocin, a hormone that has an important role during labor. Being in stress releases the hormone adrenaline which inhibits oxytocin release. Your midwife will suggest some of the natural supplements and herbs which are believed to trigger contractions. Do not get obsessed with inducing labor and try to force it because your baby needs time to be ready to come out. Trying hard to induce labor will put too much stress on your child.
By this time, your baby is going to feel everything that you feel emotionally, so you need to relax. Anxiety can also take a toll on delaying the labor. The perfect combination of relaxation and exercise can help your baby to be in the right position for delivery. Utilize the time to decide upon the things that need to take care of before your child comes. Be patient and do whatever makes you feel calm and take good care of you.
Are no signs of labor implies C-section?
Among pregnant women, 40 weeks pregnant, no signs of labor is a very much emotionally disturbing fact. They will be very much concerned, whether no signs of labor may push them for a C-section, which is the last resort if at all natural process fails to deliver the result. However, studies show that C-section, not exclusively related to delayed labor.
There are many other reasons when your doctor will recommend you a C-section delivery. If you are having any chronic medical conditions or any infection, which might affect your baby’s health, you have to go for the procedure.
The most common reason for a C-section can be your weight or your child's weight. Being obese can put on a higher risk for the need of a C-section as there are other complications connected with obesity. Sometimes you will also have a large baby, and it becomes difficult for the baby to come out through the birth canal.
If your labor doesn’t start after 42 weeks that is because your cervix is not dilating the way it should be or you are getting contractions, you doctor might decide on a cesarean delivery. I had gone through it myself when my baby's umbilical cord was short, and the doctor had to do a C-section. It was a little disappointing for me as I have already set my heart on normal delivery. Make your mind prepared for a C-section if you are pregnant although there is not even a clue till the end. It will help you if any change happens during the time of delivery because all you want is a healthy and happy baby.
Just as every woman is different, so is your pregnancy and delivery. Sometimes you are going to get certain clues that you are docking for the labor, but it should not be the case with everybody. 40 weeks pregnant, no signs of labor only mean that you fall into late term pregnancy category and apart from that, there is nothing to worry.
No one knows exactly when the baby would be out. Do trust your body's wisdom to know when your child is ready because the natural body development and hormonal changes are very detrimental in deciding the time of labor. Follow the advice of your midwife and seek her help to determine the right time. As your little bundle of joy takes his/her time, you need to relax and prepare to welcome them into this new world. Congratulations!