Pregnancy Week 32

Discover how baby-to-be is developing while you're 32 weeks pregnant, and get great tips on preparing for your baby's arrival and choosing a daycare provider

Week by week baby size image. Week by week baby size image.

How big is baby?

Your baby is the size of a Napa cabbage. Because her taste buds are developed, she may acquire a preference for the foods you eat, which she samples when she swallows amniotic fluid.

Baby's Length: 16.69in.
Baby's Weight: 3.75lb.
Fetus at Week 32 What the baby looks like at week 32 of fetal development. Med ART Studios Explore More

Baby's Development

While a teeny part of you might be thinking "get this kid outta here ASAP!" we bet the rest is sincerely hoping he'll stay in there a while longer. That said, you can breathe a sigh of relief for this week's important milestone. Almost all babies born at this stage or later survive and go on to have very healthy, normal lives. By this time all of his major organs are fully functioning except the lungs, which need just a bit more time to mature completely.

Baby Week 32

Your baby continues to rapidly grow and put on weight. He or she is about 17 inches long and now weighs about 3¾ pounds.As your baby's circulation continues to improve and the body gains more fat, he or she can regulate body temperature better and may start to shed the fine layer of hair called lanugo.More hair is starting to grow on the top of your baby's head and, due to increased pigmentation resulting from more melanin production, it now has some color.Your baby's skeletal muscles are growing stronger and the bones are hardening even more. He or she is looking more like a newborn every day.
Week by week baby ultrasound image. Week by week baby ultrasound image. American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine -

Week 32 Ultrasound

There's not much to report on your baby-to-be's developmental milestones this week. Much of his growth is strictly adding weight through fat layers that will insulate his maturing organs. He'll need plenty of fat tissue to keep him warm once he leaves his home in your womb and enters the world, where the environmental temperature is not as controlled. Although you can't see it in this image, your baby has probably been attempting to breathe this week, though his lungs still need more time to mature. Another development you'll notice in this image: look closely and you might spy the edges of his toenails, which are now fully formed.

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Watch Baby's Growth

What Week 32 of Your Pregnancy is Really Like

Mom's changing body

Because your uterus is now almost five inches above your belly, your baby is pressing more intensely on your internal organs. Expect symptoms such as urine leakage, heartburn, and breathlessness to intensify during the last few months. This might also affect your appetite in the coming weeks, causing your hunger to wane. Some expectant moms even feel nausea come back around this time.

Weekly Tip

As your due date approaches, it's a good idea to learn the signs of early labor, just in case. These include your water breaking (which could result in a gush of fluid or just a trickle), not-too-painful tightening of the uterus, period-like cramps, vaginal bleeding, increased pressure in the pelvic area, and diarrhea. With the exception of your water clearly breaking, don't worry too much if you experience one of these symptoms, since they don't always result in premature labor. But, to be on the safe side, do let your doctor know of your symptoms.

Pregnancy Confidential Podcast

Expecting the Unexpected When You're Expecting

At 32 Weeks, you're probably well aware of how unpredictable pregnancy can be—from losing all sense of balance, to forgetting what it means to have a waist, you're never quite sure what's around the corner. This feeling of lack of control happens throughout pregnancy and sometimes it can really throw you for a loop. So how do you prepare for the unexpected, especially if you take pride in being super-organized? Can you even prepare for the future? Or is pregnancy a lesson in rolling with the punches? The answer is most certainly a combination of the two.

This Week's To-Do List