You and Your Baby at Week 29 of Your Pregnancy

(10 minute read)

You and Your Baby at Week 29 of Your Pregnancy

Week 29

You must be feeling a mixture of excitement and apprehension by now. Week 29 marks the beginning of the third and final trimester. Your baby is now fully formed, although there is still lots to do, like maturing the organs and gaining fat.

How Big is Baby at 29 Weeks?

At 29 weeks, your baby is about the size of a butternut squash, typically measuring around 38 cm from head to heel and weighing approximately 2.5 to 3 pounds (1.1 to 1.4 kg). The bones are continuing to harden, except for the skull, which remains soft and flexible to make the journey through the birth canal easier.

Your baby's muscles and lungs are maturing, and the head is growing to accommodate the developing brain. Your little one's brain is busy forming millions of neurons. Additionally, the baby starts to develop a more regular sleep and wake cycle, which you might be able to notice in terms of their movement patterns, although the chance of this matching yours is fairly remote!

Your baby's senses are also evolving. By now, they can taste, see, hear, and touch. The eyes, which have been closed, can now open and are sensitive to light. The taste buds are developed, and your baby can taste the amniotic fluid. They might even respond to sounds by moving or increasing their heartbeat.

Your Body at Week 29

By week 29, you might have gained about 19 to 25 pounds, though this can vary. Your uterus is now about 3 to 4 inches above your belly button, causing noticeable changes in your body shape and posture. You might experience symptoms such as:

Braxton Hicks Contractions: These are "practise" contractions and are usually painless. They are a normal part of pregnancy and a sign that your body is preparing for labour.

Stretch Marks: As your bump expands, you may notice stretch marks on your skin. They are typically pink, red, or purple streaks on your abdomen, breasts, hips, or buttocks.

Changes in Skin Pigmentation: You may observe darker patches on your face due to increased melanin production. This is known as the "mask of pregnancy" or chloasma.

Emotional Changes

The third trimester can be an emotional time. You may feel excited, anxious, or a mix of both about the upcoming birth and parenthood. It's also common to feel more tired and have difficulty sleeping.

 


Common Symptoms at Week 29

Heartburn and Indigestion: As your uterus expands, it can press against your stomach, leading to heartburn or indigestion.

Shortness of Breath: The growing uterus can also press against your lungs, making it harder to breathe. The extra weight you're carrying around doesn't help either.

Swollen Ankles and Feet: Swelling is common due to increased fluid retention and reduced blood circulation in your legs.

Back Pain: The extra weight can strain your back, leading to discomfort or pain. Leg cramps are also common.

Insomnia and Nighttime Urination: It will be becoming increasingly difficult to sleep. Your baby could be really active at night. Add to that the fact that the baby will probably be pressing on your bladder, meaning you have to get up in the night to go to the loo.

Managing Symptoms

Balanced Diet: Eating small, frequent meals can help with heartburn and indigestion, along with avoiding spicy food.

Gentle Exercise: Activities like prenatal yoga or walking can improve circulation and alleviate swelling.

Proper Rest: Elevating your feet can help reduce swelling, and using pillows for support can aid in relieving back pain.

Staying Hydrated: Drinking plenty of water is crucial for you and your baby's health.

Prenatal Appointments

Your prenatal visits will become more frequent during the third trimester. These appointments are crucial for monitoring your baby's health and development, as well as your own. Your doctor or midwife will check your blood pressure, test your urine for protein, and measure your bump to assess the baby's growth.

 

Week 19 Fetus (27)

Boy or Girl?

You may have already been told the sex of your baby from your "anomaly scan" although this is not always easy to determine. Sometimes, it is the hospital's policy not to reveal a baby's sex before the birth. There are many old wives' tales about how to tell the sex of your baby from various factors such as your diet, the position of your bump and your baby's heart rate. None of these have any basis in fact, however! Also, don't bother with "gender prediction kits" that you can buy on the internet - these are completely useless.

Birth Plan and Classes

Now is a good time to start thinking about your birth plan and discuss it with your doctor or midwife. Consider enrolling in childbirth education classes, which can provide valuable information and help ease any anxieties about the birthing process.

Baby's Needs

Begin preparing for the baby's arrival by acquiring necessary items like a cot, car seat, and baby clothes. This is also a time to start baby-proofing your home to ensure it's a safe environment.

Congratulations on reaching week 29 of pregnancy! Continue to take care of yourself, manage the symptoms as best you can, and prepare for the upcoming birth. Remember to enjoy this special time as you get closer to meeting your little one.

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