Your baby this week
31 weeks pregnant

In the know

You may already feel the need to urinate more often. In early pregnancy, this may be caused by the increased blood flow to the pelvis -- and in later months, there's the additional weight of the baby bearing down on your bladder.

>> See ultrasound images of babies during week 30



Doctors at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas note that while frequent urination is common during the nine months, it shouldn't always be dismissed as just part of the experience. "If frequent urination becomes excessive or is associated with any burning or other new symptoms, you should see a doctor to be checked for an infection," says Dr Gary Lemack, assistant professor of urology.

"Infections during pregnancy need to be treated aggressively." Pregnant women seem no more prone to urinary tract infections (UTIs) than other women. However, when a UTI does occur, it is more likely to travel to the kidneys. According to some reports, 2 to 4 percent of pregnant women develop a urinary infection.

Scientists think that hormonal changes and shifts in the position of the urinary tract during pregnancy make it easier for bacteria to travel up the ureters to the kidneys. For this reason, many doctors recommend periodic testing of urine. Click here to read on about UTIs during pregnancy.

Make a note

Do you know the best things you can do to help avoid catching the cold or the flu? Wash your hands often, keep your hands away from your face (mouth, nose and eyes), reduce stress, eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly.

See it happen

When you exercise, take a moment to praise your body. Visualize the increased oxygen in your blood flowing to the placenta and being transferred to your developing baby. Remind yourself your body is keeping two beings healthy and alive.

Congratulate yourself on getting active, even if you only did three leg lifts... and then had to have a little peanut brittle to keep your strength up. It still counts!

Smiling pregnant woman

What can't you wait for?

From a mama-to-be on our pregnancy message boards:

I can't wait to be able to sit down without taking 10 minutes to get up.
I can't wait to be able to pick my little 1 year old without having to put him down b/c of back pain
I can't wait to nurse another little guy.
I can't wait to see his first smile
I can't wait for my dh to see our newest son.
I can't wait to introduce the newest son to our other boys.
I can't wait to see him
- danilee

Go veg

Looking for a fun vegetarian meal? Betsy -- the mom of four, including a toddler -- says, "I love pasta, but I don't usually have a lot of variations - most of my creations are some combination of noodles, ground beef, red sauce and cheese. Sometimes I'll get crazy and alfredo it up. I'm a busy working mom. I love to cook, but I just don't have enough time or energy to play in the kitchen. Besides, my family is picky and they don't want to try new foods."

Click here to read the rest of her story and how easy she found it to incorporate new vegetarian pasta dishes into her busy household!


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