Pregnancy Week 24
This week brings you good news. What’s that? Well, with this week you have cleared a big milestone of your pregnancy. Now, your baby is medically viable or in simpler terms, he or she has good chances of survival (if born premature) only if kept under good neonatal care.
Catching sight in the mirror can make you little disappointed as you are now more filled out and less defined. More and more fat is accumulating in your tummy, thighs, bottom and upper arms. Apart from this, you must be getting more emotional day by day. Routine incidences, situations and even television commercial will really affect you. Watching any mother child relationship in real or reel, looking at a passing baby in pram can bring outbreak of tears.
Well, there is nothing you can do about it. Just believe that this is perfectly normal and we would only suggest you to enjoy this emotional phase of life.
Growth and Development of Baby
The baby is continuously packing on more fats day by day but he or she still looks long and lean like an ear of corn. However, the fat deposits are lessening their skin transparency making it like normal human beings. The deposition of fats will soon start to plump up your child. The baby weighs around one and half pounds and much of this weight is coming from growth and maturation of organs.
While thinking about baby, you must always have pictured a face of your baby. Well, whatsoever is in your mind, baby has now a complete face which you could see with a baby cam at this week. He or she has complete facial features at perfect positions. Eyebrows, eyelashes, nose, ears and eyes have descended to their respective places to give a beautiful and cute face to your little one.
Fetal hearing is finely tuned with every passing day. Now, he or she can listen to the closest and farthest sound as well. Air exhaling from lungs, gastric gurgles in stomach, your outside conversation with partner or friends, and even the loud noises of honking horns, barking dogs etc can be heard and responded by the baby.
The baby’s lungs are continuously developing to make them efficient to breathe at the time of birth. The lung tissues are developing branches and creating intricate structure to allow baby to breathe. Some special cells are working on the secretion of surfactant which is of utmost importance to allow easy breathing when born.
Along with sense of hearing, fetus is now having taste buds too (now, baby knows what mommy is eating). Though the eyes are still shut, the fetus is using his hands and feet to maneuver and develop their sense of touching.
Changes in the Mother’s Body
- Blurred vision or dry or irritated eyes can be your complain in this week. The pregnancy hormones bring dryness to eyes which are worsened with glasses or contact lenses. Take help of artificial tears or lubricating eye drops. Don’t forget to wear sunglasses with Eye Protection Factor of 10 at least while moving out in the sun.
- Did you notice a strange thing with your breasts? These alike breasts pimples. Actually no, these are actually spots clinically known as Montgomery’s Tubercles which secrete oily lubricant to nourish nipples and supple them. Don’t use pimples cream or hard sops to fight with them. They will disappear on their own.
- Your mouth must be wet and messy all through the day. Excess saliva is common during pregnancy which makes you feel like swallowing all the time. Accept that you can’t win over pregnancy hormones. Just chew some gums, suck mint or use tissue to absorb the extra. Be with it anyhow.
- Do you consider dishwashing the reason of your red and itchy palms? Well, you are wrong if you think so! Again that pesky progesterone makes your palms and feet red, itchy and sore. Though, child birth is the only solution, you can avoid things which are making red more redder. These could be hot baths, overheating, wearing tight gloves or socks, etc. You can even stray away from works which include palms rubbing like dishwashing. (Thank god, there is something good about it, no dishwashing yippee).
- Numbness in wrist and fingers can be the other pregnancy woe pushing your buttons this week. Clinically, this condition is known as carpel tunnel’s syndrome. In this, pressure is exerted on the carpel nerve which runs through the wrist giving numbness, tingling and dull pain in your fingers.
- Stretch marks seem to be dreadful for every woman. Though, for some they are confined to knees, breasts and back while for some others it becomes a big concern. Many lotions, creams and moisturizers have claimed to prevent those unsightly lines but believe me, nothing can bring dramatic changes. Stretch marks are more a hereditary issue. They appear due to tearing of collagen fibers in the dermis part of the skin and no skin can actually seep into that layer. With slow weight gaining and preventing dryness and itchiness through moisturizers, you can lessen their effects.
- Headaches can be felt hanging around more. Just watch for the triggering points like caffeine, bright light, dehydration, etc. If it’s hindering or impacting your office or daily work, you can ask for some safe medications from your doctor.
- As your belly grows, you may feel more connected to your baby. Your partner would find you silently talking and smiling with the baby. Some women even think of some pet names for their unborn child. Though, it’s good to feel connected but make sure you pick a nice name as names started in innocence may carry away with your child for the whole life.
- Your weird and vivid dreams will follow you for another few weeks. Our only advice is not to take them in real. They are just a way of clearing your sub-conscious mind.
Glucose Screening and Glucose Tolerance Test
Generally, every pregnant woman is asked for this test between 24th to 28th weeks of pregnancy. The screening test is done to detect the risk of gestational diabetes. The symptoms of the same include fatigue, nausea, excessive thirst, and frequent urination. Though, it’s a rare condition affecting only 2-5% of pregnant women.
The screening test requires you to drink a sugar solution containing 50 grams of glucose in five minutes. Then, after an hour, a blood sample is taken to check for blood sugar level. Sometimes, the reading comes high in the initial screening one, you are asked to go for three hour glucose tolerance test. Many women who had high reading in the screening one don’t turn to have any gestational diabetes in their glucose tolerance test (GTT).
If you are diagnosed with this condition even after GTT, your doctor will bring about some changes in your diet and lifestyle. You may be given some medications also.
Uncontrolled or high gestational diabetes can cause life threatening effects on mother and child both.
Tips to Consider
- If you are using any cream for stretch marks, make sure it contains Vitamin E. You must apply the same just after shower as the skin is damp, moist and warm.
- Think about your babymoon again, if you have not planned yet. As long as pregnancy goes normal, there is no harm in traveling throughout. You can fly until month 8.
- Fight with your heartburn by eating small frequent meals. You must also avoid late night meals and snacks.
- Avoid taking scalp treatment or hair dye when pregnant. Try to be as natural as you can. Though, not scientifically proven, these treatments can affect your growing fetus.
- Oranges, cranberry juice, lime juice are must for you now. Vitamin C is very efficient in fighting with urinary tract infections which you are more prone to.
- Having swelled feet? Put stool under your desk at work and elevate your legs. This helps in preventing blood pooling and congestion.
- It is always better to take doctor’s advice if your work or anything demands you to get exposed to some fumes or chemicals.
- It’s the time when you can start shopping for baby furniture and nursery accessories. Remember, baby products may allure you but don’t forget your budget before steeping into any shopping complex.
- Don’t force drinking but try to aim eight glasses of fluid especially plain water. Besides water, you can take mild herbal teas, unsweetened juices and coconut water. Stay away from coffee, tea and cola as caffeine in them cases loss of water from the body.
Some Warning Signs
If there are no issues with your pregnancy by this time, there are high chances that you will not face any issues later too. However, there are some warning signs which you should always be vigilant of to avoid any complications:
- Vaginal bleeding: it is a serious issue in pregnancy. Immediately inform your doctor.
- Severe itching: this condition signifies rare liver disorder called obstetric cholestatis.
- Painful contractions: though, Braxton Hicks contractions are normal during these weeks but they are not painful and last for few seconds only. If there is a pain which lasts for longer duration, it may be real uterine contractions. Call your doctor immediately.
- Severe headache: pregnancy headache is bearable. However, if you think it impossible to tolerate, it’s something serious.
Spacing out this information, the most important tip or advice is to eat healthy diet, drink plenty of water and necessarily do some pelvic exercises. Following these simple three tips will keep you healthy and happy all through your pregnancy.