32 Weeks Pregnant: Understanding Physical Changes & Baby Milestones

Fact Checked Medically reviewed by Tanja Premru-Sršen


Welcome to thirty-two weeks pregnant! At 32 weeks pregnant, you are in the third trimester, and you and your baby are preparing for your first meet, even though it might seem so far in the future!

Thirty-two weeks pregnant usually means a lot of planning, dealing with end-of-pregnancy to-dos, and daydreaming about meeting your baby soon.

Keep reading to find more information to help you get through the thirty-second week of your pregnancy.

Physical Symptoms During Week Thirty-Two of Pregnancy

Around the week thirty-two of your pregnancy, some of the main pregnancy symptoms you can expect are going to include:

More Braxton Hicks contractions

At thirty-two weeks pregnant, your Braxton Hicks contractions, often referred to as “practice contractions,” are likely getting stronger and more frequent, which is no fun.

There is one big difference between Braxton Hicks contractions and the real contractions: Braxton Hicks are usually just uncomfortable but painless; the feeling resembles the uterus is tightening.

Braxton Hicks also go away. However, the real contractions will not go away after a while, and they are very painful.

Darker nipples

You might notice that your areolas look darker, which happens thanks to hormonal changes and pregnancy hormones that are preparing your body for the baby’s arrival.

Vaginal discharge

The increased discharge prevents infection in your private area, which is your body’s way of preparing for delivery.

However, the discharge that seems more like a watery liquid in a constant flow might mean that your water has been broken and is now leaking slowly.

If this scenario happens, visit your healthcare provider immediately at your hospital or birthing center.

What Happens to The Baby During Week Thirty-Two of Pregnancy?

At thirty-two weeks pregnant, your baby is about 16.93 inches long and weighs about 4.31 pounds, which is about the size of jicama!

At 32 weeks, baby’s development reaches a milestone of moving from the very preterm category to the moderate preterm category! At this stage, the babies’ lungs continue to develop, with just a few more weeks to reach maturity.

By 32 weeks, there is an 85% chance of your baby being positioned head-down.

However, there is no need to worry if your baby hasn’t turned yet, as some babies just take a bit longer to turn. Your healthcare provider will continue to monitor your baby’s position at every prenatal visit, which should give you peace of mind.

By the middle of the second trimester, your baby started putting on the type of fat needed to stay warm after leaving the womb, which is also called brown fat.

At 32 weeks, your baby’s body has also increased the production of an enzyme and protein needed for generating body heat, meaning that they can now regulate their body temperature better.

Your baby is likely in a head-down position, but if not, do not worry; there is a lot of time for the growing baby to turn. The healthcare provider can even manually turn the baby in the hospital or birthing center.

Pregnancy Checklist During Week Thirty-Two

There are certain tasks you need to fulfill in order to keep up with the journey and make sure you are staying on top of your and your baby’s needs.

The list of things you need to complete during your thirty-second week of pregnancy will include:

Make your meals smaller

Heartburn is one of the most dreaded symptoms of the third trimester, and it can be avoided by not filling your plate completely or going for seconds and sticking to small meals instead.

Your digestive system will find small meals are more manageable, which can ease the discomfort of heartburn or acid reflux.

Since you will be eating smaller meals, make sure to eat them more frequently than usual, about five or six times a day.

Avoid heavy, greasy, and very spicy food can also help with acid reflux and heartburn.

Keep your undies clean and dry

While keeping your underwear clean and dry is a good hygiene tip and rule of thumb, you should follow it; it is crucial during pregnancy if you are dealing with extra vaginal discharge.

Wearing cotton underwear and changing it when needed or using a pantiliner will keep you comfortable and protected from infections.

Take walks

If you are managing to attend your regular workouts at this point of your pregnancy, good for you! If you feel too tired to do Pilates and lift weights, taking a short walk a few times per day can be your way of staying active.

If you are experiencing Braxton Hicks that refuse to let up, walking for a bit might ease the pain. Make sure to stay close, though, because there is always a chance that contractions are real, and you need to call your doctor.

Install baby’s car seat

Chances are, you have already purchased a baby’s car seat, or received it as a gift during your baby shower, if you are lucky. It’s time to install it.

Installing the baby’s car seat is one of those things you delay until it is too late to do it. Set a day with your partner and get it done during the week thirty-two of your pregnancy.

Decide who will be in the delivery room

You should not feel pressured to allow friends and family into the delivery room if that makes you uncomfortable.

As the one giving birth, you have the full right to decide who shares that moment with you.

What To Avoid or Begin to Avoid?

In order to protect you and the baby during your pregnancy, it is essential to avoid potentially dangerous and harmful things and activities.

During your thirty-second pregnancy week, make sure to stay away from:

  • Smoking, doing drugs, drinking alcohol, and being exposed to toxic substances.
  • Sleeping on your tummy.
  • Performing demanding workouts and carrying heavyweight.
  • Wearing strappy and tight shoes and high heels.
  • Touching kitty litter or cat feces.
  • Drinking an excessive amount of caffeine and carbonated drinks.
  • Getting tattooed as it poses a risk of infection.
  • Eating junk food, deli meats, raw or undercooked meat, eggs, cheeses from unpasteurized milk, unpasteurized dairy foods, high mercury fish, and unwashed fruits and vegetables.
  • Having close contact with anyone with rubella, chickenpox, or the Zika virus.