What to expect

Finally: the big day! The due date your doctor calculated all those weeks ago will tick over, although it’s unlikely for your birth to fall on it. Some women have their baby in week 40 while other pregnancies might even stretch out to a 41st or 42nd week. This is completely normal, and every pregnancy is different.

Some of the signs to look out for that your baby is ready to arrive include your waters breaking, an acute backache, a sudden feeling of downward pressure within your pelvis and a sudden rush of diarrhoea. These are all signs that you might be ready to meet your baby.

Although many babies are born through a labour-induced vaginal birth, some are artificially induced while others occur via caesarean, or c-section. If it’s either of the latter, you are likely to have discussed this with your specialist in advance or these will be in response to certain complications in the hospital.

Most babies are born between the weight range of 2.9 and 4.2kg and measure in at 46 to 56cm. When your baby is born you might think that its skull looks out of shape. Don’t worry – this is a natural part of childbirth and the skull plates will realign and fuse in the weeks to come. Babies also have almost a hundred more bones than adult humans – these will fuse together as they mature.

Congratulations! Now the fun part really begins as you and your baby leave the hospital for home and a whole new world awaits you both.