Pregnancy Week 29
The big belly and hard jabs and kicks must already be giving you feel of your little one every time. The baby hiccups are another way to feel him. Apart from this, your baby is big enough to make his presence feel to the outer world too.
As the pregnancy progresses, its effects are visible and felt by your legs, bladder, belly and even brain. The life’s simplest task like bending also seems difficult. You must be feeling as you were pregnant forever. With every passing day and week, you are surprised by new symptoms and challenges. Let us read more about them.
Growth and Development of Baby
At the beginning of the third trimester, your baby is around 15 inches long and weighs around 2½ pounds. With the high pace development, baby is reaching its birth length but may double or even triple in the next 11 weeks.
The fat continues to deposit under the baby’s skin which is less wrinkled and smoother now. The baby is accumulating white fat which is different from the brown fat which baby developed for the regulation of temperature. This white fat is actually meant for energy purpose. At the same time, white greasy vernix and soft furry lanugo begin to disappear. This gives more of human like look to your baby.
The lungs are continually being more mature by practicing inhaling and exhaling of amniotic fluid. The muscles are also getting stronger. As the brain is developing with thousands of nerves and blood vessels, the head has to expand to accommodate the growing brain.
The little eyes which your baby opened in last week’s have now started focusing around. Just imagine how he would feel his world around.
Though, the baby has grown in size considerably but it still has enough space for movements and curling up. Therefore, in these weeks you will feel strongest baby movements. Jabs and pokes from his elbows and knees would make you worried at times. As all the baby is responding to all sorts of stimuli, be it movements, sounds, lights and even to what food you ate, his movements are more vigorous and frequent. You can either count or keep a general track of your baby’s movements to ensure his well being inside you.
As the baby grows at a significant pace during these weeks, he would be requiring lots of protein, vitamin C, folic acid, and iron. Besides that, baby’s bones and teeth development is also soaking up lots of calcium from your body. So, make sure you do not forget that warm glass of milk in morning and evenings. Apart from that, you must take other sources of calcium like cheese, yoghurt, orange juice, etc.
The teeth buds for your baby’s permanent teeth are forming in this week.
The baby’s chances of survival are improving with every passing week. If by any chance, baby takes birth in this week, he may survive even without respiratory support.
The baby’s placenta is becoming round and flat providing necessary nutrition and oxygen to the growing fetus.
Most of the babies start changing their position to get ready for birth and make their head down by 32 weeks. However, if baby does not do so in this time, there is nothing to be concerned about as still he has enough of the time to turn his body.
Changes in Mother’s Body
Every morning when you get up, you see a bigger belly. This growing belly has gifted you with a series of new pregnancy symptoms. Apart from this, your whole weight has increased considerably making you feel heavier every time.
Heavy legs: what’s that?
This is another complaint of pregnancy. Every time when you walk after standing or sitting for long, you feel as if you are marching with the lead boots in your feet. The blame goes to darned pregnancy hormones which makes the circulation of increased blood volume quite sluggish. The best way to keep away from this problem is to be active all the time. Try not to be in one position for too long.
Besides this, you can help yourself by putting cold compresses on your legs, massaging your calf muscles, wearing support tights, keeping your legs elevated or using a cool leg gel.
Varicose veins: ouch, it hurts!!
These are swollen blood vessels which can be caused either due to increased blood volume, growing pressure of uterus on pelvic veins or due to relaxation of veins due to hormones. Whatever is the reason varicose veins are of no concern (provided you ignore the cosmetic part of them) until they are painful. However for some women they do not cause any discomfort at all. Sometimes, these veins occur in your rectum as hemorrhoids or in vulva also. Like stretch marks, varicose veins are also associated with hereditary. So, if your moms had them, you will probably be having them for sure.
The best bet to prevent or minimize them is to keep up with the body circulation. As long as the blood flow is even and continuous, you will be saved from many problems of this trimester.
Where is the washroom?
The first trimester problem of frequent dashes to the bathroom is again becoming prominent but this time apart from the more blood volume, the growing uterus is also one big reason. It is continuously pressing on bladder making you feel rushing to washroom more often. Sort to say, but the problem will further aggravate in coming weeks.
High body temperature: uff, it’s too hot
Do you feel like spending days and nights in the air conditioner only? If so, it’s normal. In the third trimester, women face a real shift in their body temperature. You could find yourself complaining about being hot everywhere. To get some relief, avoid spicy foods, alcohol and stress.
Besides all these new symptoms of this week, your body is still fighting with the weeks old problems like:
- You must be noticing heavier and denser breasts which are now showing dilated veins and dark nipples. This is to prepare your breasts for the breastfeeding.
- Getting swollen and puffy day by day? It is simply because of the increased blood flow into the body. It’s time to get large of everything. Go buy new shoes which could fit in your swollen and bigger feet. Take off your rings before they get stuck up there.
- Bending over will become difficult day by day. If you are waiting to shave your legs or cut your toe nails, you must not. Do that now, as your big belly won’t allow you to do that later.
- Lying on your back is not only uncomfortable but harmful too. It would make you feel dizzy as the uterus puts pressure on your blood vessels thus restricting the blood flow to the body. The lightheadedness and dizziness caused by this can prove fatal if nobody is around to support you. So, better avoid that and if by any chance you feel so, don’t get up immediately. Sit there for a while, sip some water and then get up gradually.
Maternity Leave, is it the right time?
If you are a working woman, legally you are eligible to go for your maternity leave. However there are some women who prefer to stay there till end whilst others want a break from work and want to focus solely on their pregnancy and prepping up for baby.
It is completely an individual’s choice to decide the time of maternity leave. But we would suggest you to have some time for yourself before birth to take good care of yourself. You will also need some time to make preparations for the coming baby, take rest and get organized with the changing life.
With the stepping-in in the third trimester, most of the mums-to-be begin to flag while there are other lucky ones who had enjoyed their pregnancy all the way through and will continue doing so.
Before deciding about maternity leave, we would say that every pregnancy is different so don’t make any decision remembering your friends or relatives. Nobody can tell you what your body and baby demands you.
Some Important Tips to Consider
- Sleep on your left to fight with the dizziness and to ensure optimum supply of oxygen to baby tissues.
- Keep up with the light stretching exercises as it will help in efficient circulation which would then help in sciatic pain, swelling, varicose veins and the problem of heavy legs. We do understand that you are not as energetic as you were in your last trimester, but keep trying.
- The third trimester makes you more susceptible towards urinary tract infections. So, if it’s burning while peeing, see your doctor without delay.
- The nutritious pre-milk colostrum may leak from breasts now due to increased level of prolactin. So, stock up some breast pads to avoid embarrassing situations.
- Make sure to nosh on the iron-rich diet as baby demands more of it in these weeks.
- The skin stretching is continuous thus making your skin thinner and itchier than ever before. Apply some moisturizer to ease up with dryness and itching.
- If you are thinking of continuing with your work after baby, it’s the right time to do some research for the child care providers or day care centers.
- Start shopping for essentials that you will need in the hospital and immediately after his birth. Make a list and buy accordingly.
Like your first trimester which was crucial in terms of your lifestyle and eating to meet the developing baby’s needs, this is another crucial growth time for your baby. You must be getting right amount of minerals, vitamins and other energy sources demanded by your baby.
Just listen to your body! Rest if tired, go to washroom if feel the urge, watch for any new symptoms, eat and drink if body demands. Remember one thing that your body is designed to demand and fulfill its own needs only if you help it.