Your due date

It’s a rare baby that turns up on her due date, which means that most will be either early or late.

When will your baby be born?

The majority of babies do not appear on their due date (only 1 out of every 20). There is no way to predict whether your baby will be born on this day.

If you have an uncomplicated pregnancy then induction of labour will be offered between 41 to 42 weeks. This is when labour is started artificially. Research suggests the risk of stillbirth increases beyond 42 weeks. 

At 37 weeks the rate of stillbirth is 1 in every 3,000 births, which increases to 3 in every 3,000 births at 42 weeks and 6 in every 3,000 births after 43 weeks. 
If you wish to continue your pregnancy beyond 42 weeks, your midwife and doctor will respect your choice and will offer closer surveillance of you and your baby’s health until labour begins spontaneously.

Some induction procedures can take a while before your body starts to contract and go into labour. Don’t be anxious if it takes a day or two.Induced labours can be more painful than natural labours. You will be offered support and whatever pain relief method is right for you.

Last Updated: 22 January 2018
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