32 Weeks Pregnant: Symptoms & Baby Development - Babylist
32 Weeks Pregnant
April 6, 2021

32 Weeks Pregnant

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32 Weeks Pregnant.
32 Weeks Pregnant

How Big is Your Baby at 32 Weeks?

At 32 weeks, your baby is about 16.7 inches long and weighs around 3.8 pounds. That’s about the size of a Care Bear.

Here’s what else to know when you’re 32 weeks pregnant:

Your Baby’s Development at 32 Weeks

With only two months left to go, your baby is finalizing everything they need for life outside the womb. Here’s what’s happening with baby at 32 weeks.

  • Sucking and swallowing: When you’re 32 weeks pregnant, your baby is practicing sucking and swallowing to prepare their digestive system for drinking milk.
  • Breathing: They’re also practicing breathing by inhaling amniotic fluid.
  • Strong kicks: Is someone knocking down the door from the inside? Keep counting those kicks, and log how many minutes it takes your baby to get to 10 movements. Call your doctor if it’s longer than two hours, or if you notice a change in how often your baby is moving in general.
  • Change in position: Wondering what the most common 32 weeks pregnant baby position is? Most babies change position to being head-down, facing your back, by this week. It’s called the cephalic position, and it’s the ideal position for vaginal birth. If baby’s still head-up, there are still a few more weeks for them to flip into place.
Pregnant with Twins?

We probably don’t have to tell you this, but if you’re 32 weeks pregnant with twins, you’re truly in the home stretch. Many twins are born around week 37 of pregnancy.

💛 Congratulations 💛

You are 80% through your pregnancy!

32 Weeks Pregnant Ultrasound


Your Body: 32 Weeks Pregnant Symptoms

You’re probably starting to feel a bit uncomfortable at this point. Carrying around all that extra weight and blood volume certainly isn’t easy, so take a break whenever you can. Here are some of the main symptoms you may be experiencing at 32 weeks pregnant:

  • Shortness of breath: At the 32nd week of pregnancy, your uterus is about five inches above your belly button, which means your lungs are getting crowded. So don’t be surprised if you have trouble catching your breath. Rest assured your baby’s getting plenty of oxygen, but you’ll probably need to take more frequent breaks and not push yourself as hard as you’re used to.
  • Heartburn: The third trimester is notorious for being plagued by heartburn. Keep watching what foods and practices may cause yours to flare up—eating before bed or noshing on spicy foods, for example. And take an over-the-counter antacid when your precautions don’t seem to work—just make sure you’ve gotten the OK from your healthcare provider.
  • Urge to nest: The nesting instinct is so real! Dogs, mice, cats, humans—even honey bees—are all driven to create a safe, welcoming place for our young at the end of pregnancy. Your nesting instincts may take the form of working on your baby registry, picking out nursery colors or choosing the softest swaddles. #youdoyou
  • Weird dreams: Pregnancy hormones—plus trouble sleeping, stress and anticipation for baby’s arrival—can cause some pretty wacky dreams. Consider keeping a dream journal, so you can look back and your wild nighttime visions. You may even want to share them with your future child when they’re older.
  • Signs of labor?: If you start to experience any signs of preterm labor at 32 weeks, like consistent contractions, bleeding or a sudden change in vaginal discharge, be sure to let your doctor know and head to Labor & Delivery right away, just to be on the safe side.

Braxton Hicks Contractions at 32 weeks Pregnant

How do I know it’s Braxton Hicks and not something else? By definition, Braxton Hicks contractions aren’t painful or regular. The cramping or tightening sensation usually only lasts about a minute or less. You might notice them when you’re dehydrated, after sex or when you need to pee. True contractions would happen repeatedly and would become more intense and continue to happen more often.

If the cramping doesn’t go away, and/or if it continues to get more intense or frequent, you should contact your healthcare provider immediately. It could be a sign of preterm labor.

Fun Fact

Your breastmilk changes based on whether you have a boy or girl. One study suggests milk for boys may be richer, and milk for girls may be higher in calcium.

Your Life at 32 Weeks Pregnant

Your baby is growing, and so are you. This week, let’s talk dates (the kind you eat), breast pumps and baby positions. But first, a long, well-deserved shower.

  • Top tip: Here’s something you might not miss until it’s gone in, oh, let’s say, approximately two months: time for leisurely, steamy showers. If you’ve taken bathing for granted, now is a good time to step up your game and get in all the long showers—or baths—you can.
  • Recipes to try: Dates are basically nature’s candy, but according to a study, they’re also a legit way to make for an easier labor and delivery. One study showed that pregnant women who ate dates were more dilated upon admission to the hospital for delivery compared to those who didn’t eat dates. Another found that late-term date consumption was linked to reduced use of pitocin. Eat them as is, or sneak some date-based recipes into your repertoire, like this vegan chocolate date smoothie, date energy balls or savory stuffed dates.
  • Helpful hint: If you’re getting a breast pump, once you’ve finalized your selection, check the fit. Yes, this is a thing. Flanges—that’s the part that slips over your nipples and rests against your boobs—are sized based on the diameter of your nipple’s base. Shields that are too big or too small can lead to unnecessary discomfort and diminished output. Here’s a good sizing how-to. Important note: Not all nipples are created equal, so you may need different size flanges for each breast.
  • In position: You probably already know that the ideal birth position for your baby is head down nose down. Don’t worry if your little one is still all over the place, or firmly head up (aka, breech). Your healthcare practitioner will track movement as the weeks pass, and there’s plenty of time for serious baby gymnastics. In the meantime, if you’re curious about ways to improve fetal positioning, check out Spinning Babies. This go-to resource has all the info you need to safely and gently encourage your babe into the best position possible.

Managing Multiple Registries?

We can link or transfer items to your Babylist (you won’t lose your hard work!) Everything will be in one place and you’ll only have to share one registry link with gift-givers in your life.

Your 32 Weeks Pregnant Belly

By 32 weeks pregnant, you’re probably continuing to gain around a pound per week. About half of that weight goes straight to your growing baby (who’s almost 17 inches by now!), and the other half is mostly fluids and blood. Think about it this way: your blood volume has increased by 40-50% since the beginning of your pregnancy.

You may still be carrying your baby high in your midsection, but soon they will “drop” (they actually move lower toward your pelvis; it’s also called “lightening”). This happens for some pregnant women in the month or so before they deliver; for others, it happens during labor. When your baby drops, you’ll probably know it. You may breathe easier, and heartburn may ease. You will probably also feel a heavier sensation in your lower abdomen, switch to a “waddle” when you walk (sorry) and need even more frequent bathroom breaks.

32 Week Baby Bumps from Real Moms

32 weeks pregnant belly @krystalmfesterly

32 weeks pregnant pictures reganseefuss

32 weeks pregnant baby size @jen ed

32 weeks pregnant belly size @sweetmamasharon

32 weeks pregnant belly pictures @chris tinexo

32 weeks pregnant baby position @mariapbj

32 weeks pregnant belly bump pictures @ meganmade

32 weeks pregnant bump pics @cheyanneloiseau

32 weeks pregnant belly @cassy16

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32 Weeks Pregnant Checklist

  • Go to your week 32 prenatal visit.
  • If you’re going to try to breastfeed, read that breastfeeding book to get ready and make sure your pumping attachments fit properly.
  • Go on a tour of the hospital’s labor and delivery ward to see what to expect.
  • Enjoy your baby shower, if you’re having one! It’s probably happening right around now.
This information is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. We do not accept any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, from any information or advice contained here. Babylist may earn compensation from affiliate links in this content. Learn more about how we write Babylist content and the Babylist Health Advisory Board.