The beginning of a new pregnancy is exciting, and it is the same when approaching the end because you can’t stop counting down the days till you meet your little one. It can also get stressful once it’s time for the baby to come, and it doesn’t. This typically means that your baby has passed its due date.
A typical pregnancy lasts between 39 to 41 weeks; if a baby is born past 40 weeks, it is considered overdue. There is no definite reason why a woman goes into labour at a certain time; therefore, there is no known cause as to why babies go past their due dates. However, you might likely deliver late;
- If you have never before been pregnant
- If you ever had a baby in the past who was born late
- If any other ladies in your family have given birth after their due date
- If you were a late baby
Having your baby when it is past the due date has some associated risks. These risks are;
- Breathing problems in the baby
- A decrease in the amount of amniotic fluid in your womb, which surrounds and protects your growing baby.
- A slowing heartbeat and other symptoms that the baby is in discomfort are known as fetal distress.
- A cesarean section (C-section) or forceps delivery will be required. because the infant is large.
What to do
It is completely normal to be anxious while waiting for an overdue baby, but there is no need to panic if your doctor says everything with you and the baby is alright. It’s OK to wait.
There are several ways an expecting mom can keep herself occupied as she awaits the arrival of her baby and even speed up the process and jumpstart labour.
- Keep yourself occupied – Make plans for each day so you are not stuck at home waiting for something to happen. Get out of the house, but not too far away.
- Prepare for the baby – Take advantage of the extra time to be organized and prepare for your baby. You’ll be grateful for the extra preparation, especially during those first few days and nights when sleep may be scarce. You could start installing the baby seat in the car, go over baby names of your choice, read about what to expect with newborns, shop for nursing bras, stock up on diapers and baby clothes and pack your hospital bag down.
- Treat yourself – You can spend days treating yourself while waiting for your baby, you could get a massage, a facial, a manicure and pedicure, a new hair or haircut, and a bubble bath.
If you are becoming impatient and uncomfortable because the baby is overdue, you can easily jumpstart labour by doing the following;
- Engage in strenuous exercise that a doctor approves.
- Go for a bumpy car ride.
- Go for a walk around the block.
- Have an impromptu dance party at home.
- Have sex.
- Eat something spicy.
But before engaging in any of these activities, check in with your doctor first to be sure if it is safe for you and the baby.
If you’re concerned about the health of your overdue baby or the chance of stillbirth, you should have foetal monitoring performed at your checkups. One method doctors may use to safely check on your baby’s health is a nonstress test (NST). A nonstress test is a quick, painless examination that lasts around an hour. It listens to the heartbeat of the baby. As he observes your baby’s movements, the doctor will keep track of the rate of your contractions.
Try to stay calm and serene if you’re running late. Your baby will arrive before you know it, and any added stress you’re feeling will be a distant memory in no time.