How is my baby growing and developing during week 36?

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At 36 weeks the major activity is continued growth and accumulation of “baby fat”. The fetus is gaining weight at a rate of about one ounce per day. Currently the fetus weighs about 6 pounds and is about 19 inches long and at 40 weeks the fetus will be around 8.5 pounds. All the organ systems are developed and almost ready for taking over the functions done by the placenta throughout the pregnancy. At the end of the 36th week the pregnancy is considered full-term.

During the third trimester, your baby is gaining weight rapidly. At 36 weeks, your baby now has a fully developed digestive system, which is put to its first use. Until now, your baby has been wrapped in a protective fluid called the vernix caseosa, as well as downy hair called lanugo. In week 36 your baby sheds both of these layers, swallows them, and combines it with other bodily secretions to create baby's first bowel movement, called meconium.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.